In early 2017 the NGB commissioned an independent Competitions Pathway Review. The review reached out to the Welsh Netball membership in order to gain views and feedback on the current competition structure and take recommendations for any improvements.
Four regional focus groups were conducted with key netball stakeholders . These groups were designed to gain honest and current reflection on the existing competition structure. Semi-structured interviews were also carried out with Welsh Netball staff focusing on four key aspects of competitions: Quantity, Resource, Quality and Challenges. The results from the review show the collective opinions of key stakeholders who completed a survey or attended a forum. The independent review collated data into key themes which were consistently mentioned and therefore highlight the key findings for areas of improvement:
- Fair selection and equality
- Governance and engagement
- Priority calendar
- Talent development focus
- Inclusive pathway
- Workforce development
The purpose of gaining feedback was to identify recommendations and actions moving forward based on the results.
Welsh Netball are fully committed to the needs of the membership and the sport and as such will begin to examine the more in-depth recommendations that will shape the future of the competitions landscape. Our intention is to secure a fit for purpose structure which is clear and has long term sustainability. As such we will look to minimise any potential impact on our netball stakeholders for the coming 2017/18 season.
Any immediate changes for the 2017/18 season will be communicated ahead of the new season. These will be small operational changes and not major structural shifts in the landscape as it currently stands.
While a full timeline of all the changes to be made will be released in due course, the following actions have been identified as key starting points for significant change in readiness for the 2018/19 season:
- Introduce a National Competitions Steering Group to provide strategic direction and operational support to the delivery of competition in Wales. Terms of reference and make up of the group to be created, shared, appointed and scheduled
- Introducing a Welsh Netball governance framework in alignment with INF regulations for the operation of competitions from Regional to National level. For clarity this is not intended to apply to domestic leagues.
- Explore and encourage potential partnerships for the delivery of competitions.
- Promote a talent development focus throughout the pathway and organisation.
- Publish a holistic national and performance competition calendar.
Further actions and information will be communicated with a timeline as soon as practical. We thank each member for their time and input during the review process. We are aware that further discussions will be required and support and input will be welcomed.