Twelve teams will take part in this year’s inter-provincial tournament, which is played on a “strength versus strength” basis, with the top six sides scheduled for battle in Section A.
While the primary goal for teams may be to stop defending champions Southern Gauteng from retaining their title, individual players will be doing their best to impress national selectors.
The final South African team for the World Cup in Spain will be named immediately after the tournament, and many players will also be eyeing available spots in the SA squad for the 2008 Olympic Games.
"The IPT provides the ideal opportunity for our top players to get together and prepare for the upcoming World Cup," said Dave Carr, President of the South African Hockey Association (SAHA), "and I would like to thank SPAR for their continued support of the international women’s programme and for making events such as this possible."
Southern Gauteng, boasting a host of national players, including Marcia Marescia, Fiona Butler and Caroline Jack, can expect tough competition, particularly from 2004 champions, Western Province.
Border, who won the President’s Cup in 2005, have been promoted to the A tournament, replacing the SA Juniors team.
Section A: Southern Gauteng, Western Province, North West, Northerns, KwaZuluNatal, and KZN Midlands
Section B: Eastern Province, Peninsula, Witwatersrand, KZN Mynahs, Free State and Border