Liz Nicholl, the former chief executive of UK Sport, has been named as the new president of the International Netball Federation.
Nicholl, a former England netball international, was elected at the INF’s ongoing Congress in Liverpool, UK, ahead of the 2019 Netball World Cup, which begins tomorrow. She will formally take up the role after the tournament, when the current president, Jamaica’s Molly Rhone, is due to step down.
She was nominated for the role by England Netball, where she had served as chief executive for 16 years over two spells between 1980 and 1999, before joining UK Sport, first as director of elite sport, then as chief operating officer before finally taking up the chief executive role in 2010.
Her time at UK Sport was notable for the London 2012 Olympic Games and the huge success of Team GB, but Nicholl also drew controversy as the architect of the body’s “all or nothing” funding system, which prioritised medals and was criticised for damaging less successful sports at a grassroots level.
“I am thrilled to have been elected as President of the International Netball Federation and would like to thank everyone for their support,” said Nicholl on her election. “Netball is changing the landscape of female sport and opening new opportunities around the world.”
She also paid tribute to her predecessor, stating: “Molly Rhone has been an inspirational and outstanding president and I look forward to building upon her impressive legacy towards the ultimate of positioning netball as a premier sport in the global arena.”
Earlier this week, Nicholl was also named as an independent non-executive director of the Football Association’s new women’s football board.