The Net

Posted by martin.parnell |

Next Quest:

  • Comrades Quest 89

  • The Comrades Marathon (89km)
  • Sunday May 29th 2011
  • Durban to Pietermaritzburg
  • South Africa
  • Days to go: 34
  • Finish Time (target): 11hrs 59 mins 59secs
  • Finish Time (actual):

In 1891, James Naismith, a Canadian physical education instructor, working in Springfield,  Massachusetts, invented Basketball. Naismith's new game quickly spread across the United States. But, when basketball spread to England, an entirely new sport emerged. In 1893, Martina Bergman-Osterberg introduced a version of basketball to her female students, at the Physical Training College in Hamstead, London. The rules of the game were modified over several years: the game moved outdoors and was played on grass; the baskets were replaced by rings that had nets; and in 1897 and 1899, rules from women's basketball in the United States were incorporated. Madame Osterberg's new sport acquired the name "net ball".

The sport is now played by over 20 million people in more than 70 countries and is administered globally by the International Federation of Netball Associations (IFNA). Local-level participation is widespread in Commonwealth nations, particularly in schools, and the highest level of international netball includes the Netball World Championships, the Commonwealth Games and the World Netball series. In 1995, netball also became an Olympic-recognised sport.

Last week I played in an exhibition netball game. Julie Arnold from Netball Alberta had contacted me, to see if I was interested in playing and help promote the sport. You bet. Julie had also asked Earle Conner, 100m Para Olympic gold medalist, to play and he had agreed. Julie was promoting it as "The Hare vs the Tortoise". Cheeky. Earle and I joined members of the Women's U18 and U23 squads and played for two, 15 minute periods. This game is tough. There's loads of stop / starts and after the half an hour I was done. I'm now in awe of my wife, Sue, who was captain of her school netball team.

Now, maybe if the game was 6 or 12 hours long, I'd have a chance!

Dr Randolph Randolph's book of animal jokes (Bees)

Q: What kind of bees drop things?
A: A fumble bee!

Quote of the Day

"We should come home from adventures, and perils, and discoveries every day with new experience and character."

Henry David Thoreau.

Earle Connor, 100m Para Olympic gold medalist and Marathon Martin join members of the U18 and U23 Alberta Netball squad for an exhibition game.

Net ball

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