Legal wrangling between Netball New Zealand and under-fire Silver Ferns coach Janine Southby is believed to be the reason for the continued delay in revealing the findings of a "comprehensive review" into the team's disappointing Commonwealth Games campaign.

In April, Netball New Zealand (NNZ) announced a probe into its high performance programme in the wake of the Ferns' fourth-place finish on the Gold Coast and amid claims of a dressing-room rift.

The findings and recommendations of the review, led by Auckland lawyer Don Mackinnon, were meant to be presented to the NNZ board at the start of June but it is believed Southby, who is contracted until next year, has been reluctant to walk away early.

The Herald on Sunday understands lawyers have been trying to find a solution, and attempts to settle on a suitable compensation package for Southby is likely behind the delay in the review findings being made public.


The Ferns missed out on a medal in Australia after losing to Malawi, England, Australia and Jamaica.

Southby was widely criticised for her selections and rotation strategy, while her record of winning just six of 18 games across the Ferns' most recent international season (including 11 straight losses to Tier One nations Australia, England and Jamaica) led to calls for her sacking.

Further confirming New Zealand's recent demise in the netball world, the Ferns fell out of the top two of the Netball Federation rankings this month for the first time since the rankings began in 2008.

Former Silver Ferns coach Yvonne Willering has urged NNZ to veer away from taking the easy road, saying now was the time to make an "honest" statement.

"If they remain status quo, I think people will be dissatisfied," Willering told the Herald on Sunday.

"I think Netball New Zealand and the board need to be pretty intent in making sure it's done right.

"In the past, with player reviews, they've not necessarily been totally honest, as their own position in the team was at stake, but I think now is an opportunity for some honest evaluations.

"We're all waiting to see what steps we're going to take going forward [after the review]. Now it's a situation where you have got to provide solutions," said Willering.

Southby could not be reached for comment.