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When did netball originate?

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โˆ™ 2010-09-18 20:29:00

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In 1871 Dr James Naismith, a Canadian immigrant YMCA instructor in the USA, invented the game of Basketball. Another American, Dr Toles, who was visiting England in 1890, introduced basketball to that country, and although Englishmen preferred traditional sports, it was popular with the ladies.

In England in 1895, ladies using broomsticks for posts and wet paper bags for baskets played the basketball game on grass. Their long skirts, bustle backs, nipped waists and button up shoes impeded running and their leg-of-mutton sleeves restricted arm movement making dribbling and long passes difficult. The ladies decided to adapt the game to accommodate these restrictions.

An early netball game © Netball Australia

In 1898 the court was divided into thirds, the number of players increased from five to nine and a smaller ball (a soccer ball) was used. There were two umpires, two scorers and two timekeepers - almost as many officials as players for each match.

In those early days the nets were not open at both ends and after each goal was scored, the umpire had the task of retrieving the ball from the top of the post.

In England in 1901 the first set of rules was published and 'netball' officially came into existence in that country. At the turn of the century school teachers from England travelled to many countries of the then British Empire, and the game of netball or "ladies basketball" (if prior to 1901) went with them.

Once established, the game developed locally and soon each country had its own separate rules and distinct methods of play, even its own name for the game. In Australia and New Zealand where the game was established before 1901, it was called Women's Basketball and the name was changed to Netball in these two countries in 1970.

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โˆ™ 2010-09-18 20:29:00
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