Netball: Nod to all five Tasman Trophy bids

Netball New Zealand has backed the five bids received for the five New Zealand spots in next year's inaugural Tasman Trophy competition.

The national body yesterday said it had recommended to the tournament organisers that all the groups which had submitted expressions of interest should be offered places.

The 10-team, 17-week Tasman Trophy will begin next April, replacing the National Bank Cup and Australia's Commonwealth Bank Trophy.

Unlike in Australia, where there are six nominations for five places, New Zealand's regions worked to produce as many applications as vacancies so that the present eight cup franchises are represented.

NNZ chairman Don Mackinnon said the quality of the submissions from the five New Zealand bids was exceptional.

"A lot of work has gone on behind the scenes, five high quality bids were received, and NNZ's recommendation to the Tasman Trophy board is that all five applicants are on track to be very successful participants."

The Tasman Trophy Joint Venture Board, the organisation running the tournament, would now start a process of agreeing a contract with the participating teams.

Proposed Teams

* North/Auckland Waitakere/Counties Manukau.

* Waikato/Bay of Plenty.

* Eastern/Western/Wellington/Tasman.

* Canterbury

* Otago/Southland.

- NZPA

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