Sri Lanka Netball soars to top 20 in World Rankings

Netball Singapore

After a successful year of competition, Sri Lanka Netball has managed to claim the 19th position in the International Netball Federation’s World Rankings as of 2nd December 2018.

The nation began the year in 27th position, behind Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong but saw a slight improvement as they moved past Hong Kong to 26th position this June. Since then, with the success they enjoyed at the Asian Championships, Sri Lanka has managed to climb 7 positions to end the year on a high.

Read how the ranking system works : Sri Lanka moves up in World Netball Rankings

The success of the team should largely be credited to the appointment of Thilaka Jinadasa as head coach in December 2017.

With renewed support from the Sri Lanka Netball Federation, Jinadasa ensured that players in the national pool got plenty of international exposure and practice prior to the Asian Championships, organizing a friendly tournament in Sri Lanka (which included the Singapore National Team) and then touring Malawi (ranked 6th in the World) in July/August.

Read Also: Poor administration not performance that hurt Sri Lanka – Jinadasa

Add to this Sri Lanka also regained the services of their star shooter Tharjini Sivalingam in 2018, after a tiff with the administration had seen her out of the team since September, 2014. Sivalingam was instrumental in Sri Lanka’s championship run, achieving a shooting percentage of 97% at the tournament.

Sri Lanka reached the heights of 14th in the world following the Asian triumph back in 2009, but have gradually been slipping down the rankings with administrative issues and fewer games coming their way over the past decade. With the rise to 19th in the World, Sri Lanka are now also the highest ranked team in Asia, surpassing Singapore (25), Malaysia (27) and Hong Kong (28).

However, with a first National Netball Championship being played to international standards over the last week and the push towards bringing in more sponsors and more players into the game, one can hope that Sri Lanka Netball is on an upward trend.

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