Australia strengthens support for Pacific Netball

  • Joint media release with:
  • The Hon Anika Wells MP, Minister for Sport

The Australian Government and Netball Australia will continue to partner through PacificAus Sports to support the development of high performance netball throughout the Pacific.

The new four-year partnership will enhance pathways to elite competition for Pacific netballers through athlete immersion programs and high performance workshops and support the development of local coaches and match officials.

Pacific teams will have the opportunity to compete in tournaments in Australia, including the annual Pacific Netball Series in Brisbane, which this year will see Fiji, Samoa and Tonga competing against some of the world’s best.

The partnership also offers unique opportunities to deepen people-to-people connections, with Australian teams to spend time in the Pacific playing matches, supporting local player development, and engaging with local communities.

The success of the partnership which began in 2021 is evidenced by the growth of Tonga’s national team, who has gone from unranked to now be one of the Top 10 netball nations in the world, highlighting the skills, talent, athleticism, and potential of Pacific netballers.

Quotes attributable to the Minister for International Development and the Pacific, the Hon Pat Conroy MP:

“Netball is the number one participation sport for Australian girls and is another example of the many passions that Australia and the Pacific share. The Australian Government is proud to further build on our partnership with Netball Australia through PacificAus Sports, to support the development of high performance netball throughout the Pacific and empower the next generation of women and girls to pursue their sporting dreams.”

Quotes attributable to the Minister for Sport, the Hon Anika Wells MP:

“We want more women and girls in Australia and the Pacific being inspired to be active and reap the physical and mental health benefits sport provides.

“This is yet another example of how the Albanese Government is committed to women’s sport in region and using sport as a means to turn groups of strangers into communities.”

Quotes attributable to Stacey West, Netball Australia Chief Executive Officer:

“Netball Australia is thrilled to extend its partnership with the Australian Government and build on the strong relationship between Australia and the Pacific. The PacificAus Sports initiatives have had a significant impact across the duration of this partnership, pivotally in this year’s Athlete Immersion program, First Nations Coaching Workshop in Fiji, and the upcoming Pacific Netball Series which begins this week.

“We look forward to continuing our shared work to inspire and develop netball relationships between Australia and the Pacific.”

Quotes attributable to Sayonara Alaalatoa (Nara), Athlete for Netball Samoa

“Through the PacificAus Sports program, I was given an opportunity to improve my performance in netball and meet great athletes who inspired me to a point where I started working so hard that now I get to play alongside and against them, which I believe is a great privilege.”

About Nara Alaalatoa

Nara of Samoa took part in the PacificAus Sports Youth Immersion program in 2022 and was then elevated to the Samoan Opens/National squad before making her debut at the second edition of the PacificAus Sports Netball Series in October 2022 on the Sunshine Coast. Nara has remained in the National Squad since then, and her achievements highlight the impact of the partnership and the opportunities it provides to Pacific netballers.

About PacificAus Sports

PacificAus Sports is an Australian Government sports diplomacy initiative developing pathways for Pacific teams and athletes to compete in elite competitions and access high performance coaching in Australia and internationally. The program partners with Australian national sports organisations to support a range of Pacific sports, including rugby league, rugby union, netball, football, AFL, cricket and Olympic/Paralympic sports, with funding split evenly between women and men. PacificAus Sports also partners with the Australian Broadcasting Commission (ABC) to promote Pacific sport through ABC Television’s ‘That Pacific Sports Show’ and ABC Radio’s ‘Fresh Off the Field’. The high performance outcomes of PacificAus Sports are complemented by the Australian Government’s Team Up program, which focuses on sport for development in the Pacific. For more information about PacificAus Sports and its initiatives, visit and follow PacificAus Sports on Facebook.

Media enquiries

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