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England Netball eyes participation boost after signing new TV deal

By Matthew Campelli    28 Nov 2016
Surrey Storm were crowned champions of the 2016 Netball Superleague

England Netball is eyeing increased participation after inking a fresh four-year deal with Sky Sports to broadcast a package of league and international matches.

The pay-TV broadcaster will take its coverage of the Vitality Superleague up to 11 years when the deal ends in 2020.

Its Sky Sports Mix channel will also host several England Roses matches, including an upcoming Test Series with Jamaica and the new Quad Series. The former will see England take on Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

Joanna Adams, England Netball chief executive, said she expected the deal to be the catalyst behind grassroots growth.

“This coverage will help to cement the continuing increase in netball’s participation figures,” she added.

The deal represents a big boost for netball and women’s sport in general.

During an interview with Sports Management in June, Adams revealed that the broadcasting deal was helping the governing body become less reliant on government grants from Sport England.

Around 30 per cent of England Netball’s current funding comes from self-generated income, while 70 per cent comes from government. Adams said she would eventually like those figures the other way around.

England Roses head coach Tracey Neville said it was a “wonderful time” for netball at the moment, with the emergence of full-time contracts as well as the television deal.

“Over the last few years our players have seen the positive impact of having England matches shown on Sky, they are really embracing becoming inspirational role models,” she added.

England Netball  netball  Joanna Adams  participation  Sky 
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