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Tauranga to host Constellation Cup

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The Silver Ferns will face the Australian Diamonds for the first time in over a year when the Constellation Cup comes to New Zealand as part of the Cadbury Netball Series.

The event, which was postponed due to COVID-19 last year, will be hosted in Christchurch and Tauranga.

The first two matches on March 2-3 will be held at Christchuch Arena, then the action will head to Trustpower Baypark Arena in Tauranga on March 6-7.

It will be Australia’s first series in New Zealand under new coach Stacey Marinkovich and the side will undergo a two-week quarantine period to comply with the New Zealand Government’s COVID-19 requirements.

The Diamonds team will travel to Christchurch on Monday February 15 and prepare for the series during 14 days of managed isolation.

Netball NZ chief executive Jennie Wyllie says she was delighted to announce the series against their trans-Tasman neighbours after what had been a long wait.

“We’re really excited to confirm this series after the disappointments of postponing the Constellation Cup in 2020 due to COVID-19,” she says.

“We’d also like to acknowledge the Australian Diamonds for agreeing to come to New Zealand where they will go into the mandatory two-week quarantine leading into the series.

“To be able to host international netball in the current climate is something we do not take lightly so we’re excited to see our world champion Silver Ferns have the opportunity to take on one of their toughest opponents.”

Silver Ferns coach Dame Noeline Taurua says she is looking forward to the challenge of playing the Diamonds.

“Australia is deservedly ranked number one in our sport and as a Silver Fern, there is nothing better than gauging yourself against the world’s best,” she says.

"We love the trans-Tasman rivalry and Constellation Cup. It truly is a blessing that we can rekindle our connections, and play the sport both countries love in these Covid times."

The Silver Ferns last met the Diamonds in October, 2019 where Australia retained the Constellation Cup trophy.

The 2021 Constellation Cup is also scheduled to be played again later this year in an international calendar for the Silver Ferns which will include a Taini Jamison Trophy series.

This Constellation Cup series is an official International Netball Federation tournament and will count towards world ranking points.

All Constellation Cup matches will be broadcast live on Sky Sport 3, with tickets set to go on sale from early February.

For more information: click here.

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