By Zbc Reporter
The latest Netball World rankings have seen Australia retain their position as the top team in the world, while current world champions New Zealand’s ‘Silver Ferns’ is closing the gap in second place. England overtook Jamaica to claim back third place. Other changes in the top 20 saw Malawi move up one place to 6th, Uganda move down to 7th while Zimbabwe move up a place to 12th and Barbados down to 13th.
The International Netball Federation released the latest INF World Rankings which follow the annual update performed to ensure the rankings reflect the most current form of the international teams.
Zimbabwe Netball Gems who made a huge impression at the 2019 Vitality Netball World Cup in Liverpool, England in July, finished a credible eighth.
The Netball Gems beat Northern Ireland in a thriller of a game which catapulted Zimbabwe into the Tournament’s Top 8 Teams and also raised their World ranking as Ireland ranked at number 9 and Zimbabwe Gems ranked 13t
Their maiden appearance at the 2019 Vitality Netball World Cup in Liverpool, Zimbabwe won the hearts and minds of many with their enthusiasm, dance moves beating Sri Lanka 79-49 in their opening match at the Vitality World Cup. The Zim Gems then lost to then defending and 11 time champions Australia 73-37, beat Northern Ireland 51-49, beat Barbados 66-41, lost to Malawi 59-43, lost to Jamaica 77-47, lost to Uganda 58-47, during the seventh place play-off to finish in eighth place.
Matches played before July 2017 are no longer included in determining the INF World Rankings. Matches played between 1st July 2017 and 30th June 2019 now have a 50% weighting, while those played from 1st July 2019 onwards have a full weighting (100%).
This year, in light of the cancellation and postponement of matches due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the INF Board decided to reduce the number of matches required to obtain a ranking from eight to six. This allows some countries who have not been able to play eight matches in this period due to the suspension of international play to maintain their ranking.
More changes see Antigua and Barbuda move up to 31st place, the Cayman Islands move up two places to 26th while Botswana move down to 27th and Ireland move down to 28th. The largest movement within the rankings is Namibia who move from 30th place to 23rd and Lesotho join in the rankings in 40th place.
Based on matches up to 1st July 2020
This rankings system was developed for the INF by statistician David Kendix.
The first list was published on 11 February 2008. The latest list has been updated on 1st July 2020 and includes matches up to this date. The ranking list relates to senior teams of member countries that are playing regular international test matches.
A rating is a measure of the average performance of a team over a series of matches. Each team earns a certain number of points from each international match. Their rating is the total number of points earned divided by the number of matches played. The team with the highest rating is ranked first in the world. The next highest rating is ranked second and so on.
Weighting Matches played a long time ago are a poorer guide to current form than more recent results. Therefore past results are weighted, giving a lower weighting to earlier results. For the purposes of this list, matches played since July 2019 currently have a full weighting (100%). Matches played in the two previous years (July 2017-June 2019) have a weighting of 50%. Earlier matches are not directly included in the ratings at all.
Each July, the oldest year of results will drop out of the ratings and the weightings redistributed. This is the one annual occasion when the rankings list could alter other than through a match being played.
The number of points earned by a team for any match depends on two factors. The result (won, tied or lost) and the opponent against whom the result was achieved. The higher an opponent’s rating the more points are earned for beating them.
If a team wins a match they will earn 50 points more than their opponent’s rating. But if they lose, they will earn 50 points less than their opponent’s rating.
It is not meaningful for a team to claim a world ranking if they have only played a small number of matches. As soon as a team has played eight International test matches over the rating period then they will have earned an official world ranking. If a team has played fewer than eight matches, they will still have a rating, but without a corresponding ranking. To have a ranking the team must have played at least 2 games against a rated team.
The following teams currently have a rating in the system and could become ranked once they have played 6 matches:
- Chinese Taipei
The INF World Rankings were reviewed at the INF Board Meeting in June 2012, with David Kendix, Statistician, who was retained by the INF to develop the ranking methodology in 2007.
Following a detailed discussion the Board was satisfied that we have a robust and reliable rankings system that presents a true reflection of the quality and standing of the performances of international teams and that this system can be used with confidence for qualification purposes.