Defending champions New Zealand started the Netball World Cup with a 76-27 victory against Trinidad and Tobago ©Getty Images

Defending champions New Zealand and hosts South Africa were among the teams who began the Netball World Cup with convincing victories in Cape Town.

The first day did not produce too much in the way of surprises at the Cape Town International Convention Centre, with New Zealand starting in Group D with a 76-27 thrashing of Trinidad and Tobago.

Goal shooter Grace Nweke scored 31 goals with a 100 per cent shooting accuracy to ensure she and her team began the tournament in fine fashion.

Uganda dominated the other Group D match with a 79-37 triumph over Singapore.

The morning session in Group A began with a 56-51 win for Tonga, before Commonwealth Games champions Australia underlined their ambitions with an 86-30 victory against Zimbabwe.

Australia had their run of three consecutive Netball World Cups ended by New Zealand with a one-point defeat in the final four years ago, but 29 goals from Cara Koenen, 27 from Sophie Garbin and 26 from Steph Wood started their quest to reclaim the trophy on the front foot.

South Africa were in action in the evening session in Group C, overcoming Wales 61-50 to the delight of the home crowd.

Ine-Marí Venter starred for the hosts with 42 goals from 43 shots.

South Africa's best performance at a Netball World Cup came in 1995, when the vent was known as the World Netball Championship and they finished as runners-up to Australia.

They reached the semi-finals four years ago.

Jamaica began the Netball World Cup by breaking the century mark in a 105-25 thrashing of Sri Lanka in Group C.

Jhaniele Fowler starred with 42 goals from 43 shots for the Commonwealth Games runners-up.

The match marked only the 14th time a team has hit the 100-point mark in the 60-year history of the Netball World Cup.

England missed out on a medal at their home Commonwealth Games last year, but the world number three-ranked side made an encouraging start to the World Cup in Group B with a 90-29 triumph over Barbados.

Malawi were the day's other winners in Group B, overturning a 17-9 first quarter deficit to beat Scotland 55-49.

Preliminaries stage one action is due to continue tomorrow and on Sunday (July 30), with the top three sides in each group advancing to Groups F and G in stage two.