The 2023 ANZ Premiership schedule has been announced, headlined by a return to prime time Saturday night netball along with double-headers in a Netball World Cup year.

The MG Mystics and Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel open the season at The Trusts Arena with a Saturday night clash on 4 March in what will again be a condensed draw due to the World Cup in South Africa in July.

The shortened schedule will be played over 12 weeks with the Finals Series to be played at the end of May and start of June.

Netball NZ Head of Events Emma Fowlie said the return of Saturday night netball was exciting for the ANZ Premiership as well as double-header weekends providing a feast of sport for netball fans throughout the country.

“We have found in the past that netball holds its own in the prime time Saturday night slot and it will add something special to a weekend of competition,” she said.

“There is another pinnacle event for our sport next year, so we have again condensed the draw to allow a full three rounds over 12 weeks leading into the Netball World Cup in South Africa.

“We know the ANZ Premiership will play an important role in the Silver Ferns build-up to their title defence on the world stage, so we can expect some fierce competition as our athletes look to put their best foot forward.”

There will also be a new venue added to the ANZ Premiership calendar with Mainpower Stadium in Rangiora to be used for the first time as a home court for the Trident Homes Tactix in a double-header weekend in Round 4.

“We’re delighted to add another venue to the schedule and encourage the North Canterbury community to get in behind their home team when the Tactix play the Pulse and Magic in Rangiora,” Fowlie said.

All 45 regular season matches will be broadcast live and replayed on Sky Sport, along with free-to-air coverage of selected games on Prime.

Extensive coverage of the ANZ Premiership can also be found on the league’s website and social channels.

Details on the Finals Series will be announced during the season.