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Netball Super League Stars Shine on Day 1 at the Netball World Cup

Welcome to the Netball World Cup x Netball Super League (NSL) updates blog, where you can keep on top of all that’s going on in Cape Town! In this article, you will find score updates, standout players and much more. Come back daily to read about your NSL stars!

Fixtures: 

All fixtures listed are those including players who feature in the NSL. You can find a list of all fixtures and where to watch on Sky here.

You can also find information about BBC coverage here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Zealand vs Trinidad and Tobago:

The first half of game one was a mixture of fireworks and high intensity. New Zealand fired out of the blocks, taking the first centre pass of the 2023 Netball World Cup straight to goal.

The Silver Ferns were relentless with their scoring, starting off strong with a 9-0 advantage and only allowing Trinidad and Tobago the opportunity to score their first goal of the tournament, six minutes into the first half. The first quarter ended 23-2.

Our very own Shaquanda Greene-Noel of Celtic Dragons was working tirelessly in her defensive unit but was taken off in the second quarter to rest. Her dancing however has already begun and we look forward to seeing more as the tournament progresses.

With the New Zealand side featuring six World Cup debutants, they continued to show flare and solid shooting stats, with Maia Wilson scoring at 100% in the first half.

The half time whistle blew and it was 43-11 to the Silver Ferns.

Quarter three brought more excitement as Trinidad and Tobago stepped up their attacking through court, allowing more balls to put into the circle with confidence. The Silver Ferns went into the last quarter of the game leading 58-20.

With Greene-Noel coming back on in the final quarter, her Trinidad and Tobago side were keen to get as many goals as possible in the remaining few minutes of the first game. Her iconic lifts made a comeback to get maximum height in the defensive circle against a tall New Zealand shooter.

The game ended with a win for the Silver Ferns, 76-27.

Australia vs Zimbabwe:

The first half of game two was a spectacle. Australia of course came out fighting but Zimbabwe did not make it easy for the Diamonds.

An early turnover from Surrey Storm’s Felisitus Kwangwa made it’s way down to the Zimbabwe shooting circle, putting them one ahead in the opening minutes.

With this being Zimbabwe’s second Netball World Cup, they put their all into this first quarter. It concluded 20-11 to the Australian Diamonds.

Quarter two saw Australia’s ball speed reach new heights as their attacking units fired passes from all over. They sailed into the half time break with a comfortable lead of 41-18.

The third quarter saw the Aussie Diamonds put their foot on the gas with Zimbabwe trying their best to keep up. Kwanagwa continued to attempt to win every ball possible but her side went into the final quarter down 62-24.

Quarter four allowed Australia to try some new combinations as well as racking up their goals against the African side. The game ended with a huge score from the Diamonds, winning 86-30.

Uganda vs Singapore: 

The Ugandan She Cranes delivered an undeniably solid start to their World Cup campaign with a first match victory against Singapore, 79-37.

Making full use of their squad, Hanisha Muhammad gave a solid World Cup debut in the GS bib for the first half of the game. Both initial quarters saw a steady tempo from both sides; 22-9 in the first quarter to the She Cranes, which was extended to a 42-18 lead by half time.

Loughborough Lightning’s Mary Cholhok took to the court for the third quarter as GS, in which she delivered a seamless shooting partnership with captain Irene Eyaru. Cholhok demonstrated why she’s consistently been one of the fiercest shooters in the 2023 NSL, where she clocked 808 goals at the end of the regular season and an 89% shooting average.

Both shots from range, and a holding masterclass highlighted the variety Cholhok brings to the court and why she is such a weapon for the Ugandan side. Combined with feeds of pinpoint accuracy from the mid-court, the third quarter proved too much for the Singaporean defence, and Uganda were able to extend their lead to 62-29.

Resting Cholhok for the final quarter, Christine Namulumba took to the shooting circle for Uganda to comfortably round out the match with a 42-goal lead against Singapore. The Singaporean side showcased real moments of netballing prowess; and generated an impressive 47 turnovers against Uganda’s 20. However, the height of the Ugandan side proved problematic for Singapore, who worked tirelessly to make their 47% possession count.

It was a strong start for the She Cranes, who made it clear they are looking to compete in this tournament and will next be on court against the Silver Ferns.

South Africa vs Wales:

The Welsh national anthem was belted out by it’s athletes ahead of their first clash against South Africa, with the opposition singing theirs with gusto in return. The moment is cherished by the players as tears were shed amongst all.

With Wales appearing in their first World Cup since 2015, the first quarter was theirs to take, with their first goal being sunk by Celtic DragonsPhillipa Yarranton. However, the SPAR Proteas were quick to respond, and with the help from the crowd’s enthusiasm, Saracens Mavericks’ Ine-Mari Venter put South Africa’s first goal through the net, despite being against her Mavericks team mate Christina Shaw. The first quarter ended 18-9.

Wales and Leeds Rhinos captain, Nia Jones came back onto court after the quarter time break with a smile across her face, which quickly turned into her game ready mode. Her speed against South African and former NSL star Bongiwe Msomi, was equally matched by her opponent. The crowd showed their appreciation at the impressive turnovers made by Manchester Thunder’s Shadine Van Der Merwe which allowed her South African side to go on a goal scoring streak. The teams went into the break with smiles on their faces after some tough battles, with South Africa leading 32-24.

The half time stats showed that Dragons’ shooter Georgia Rowe shot at 94% in the first half, whilst down at the other end of the court, Ine-Mari Venter was scoring at 96%.

The third quarter gave us tussles, long balls into the circle and sneaky no look passes. Team Bath and Wales athlete Bethan Dyke against South African legend Karla Pretorious was a match in itself as these strong players battled it out to win ball for their team. The SPAR Proteas went into the final quarter holding onto their lead, 47-37.

With a debut for Wales, Nansi Kuti came on to show what she’s made of against a tough South African defence. Meanwhile, Dragons’ Ella Powell-Davies was making it tough for Ine-Mari Venter to regain access to the shooting circle. The Welsh Feathers came back to within eight goals halfway through the final 15 minutes, but the SPAR Proteas were just too strong today, eventually winning 61-50.

Scotland vs Malawi:

The Scottish Thistles got off to a commanding start, posting a 17-9 lead in the first quarter, with a starting seven which boasted six NSL players. The two sides’ previous encounters at CWG 2018 and 2014 saw Malawi victorious in both instances, and by only a single goal in their most recent clash, setting up a fired Scottish team ready for revenge.

The Thistles fielded a solid attack in Strathclyde SirensBethan Goodwin and Niamh McCall working together in the circle to deliver a combined 89% shooting average over the course of the game.

However, the attackers were slowed down by fellow Sirens’ teammate Towera Vinkhumbo who put in a commanding performance at goal defence. Vinkhumbo showcased her dynamic athleticism and ability to read the game and work with her team mates to turn the screws on Scotland as the game went on.

Manchester Thunder’s Iona Christian worked hard at wing attack for the Thistles, delivering no less than 17 goal assists and supported by Celtic Dragons’ Hannah Leighton at Centre who worked tirelessly down the court, contributing interceptions and goal assists. Further down the court, Sirens’ Claire Maxwell gave a solid performance at wing defence, with NSL teammate Emily Nicholl stepping out in the goal defence bib for the first time in the tournament.

At half time, Thistles were proving dominant with a 29-22 lead, however, heading into the third quarter, the momentum started to shift with The Queens capitalising on every ball in their attacking circle. With a scoreline of 41-35 to the Thistles heading into the final quarter, it was all to play for, with The Queens dialling up the heat and shifting the momentum. A huge fourth quarter saw Malawi take the lead, posting 20 goals to Scotland’s eight and claiming a 55-49 victory in the opening match of their World Cup campaign.

England vs Barbados:

With the Vitality Roses facing the Bajan Gems in their first game of the tournament, there were some familiar faces on the opposition of Sasha and Kadeen Corbin. Eleanor Cardwell scored the first goal for the Roses with perfect ball delivery from Manchester Thunder and England Captain Natalie Metcalf.

The Corbin sisters executed some lovely passes between the Barbados attacking unit before getting their first goals on the board. Latonia Blackman, who is playing in her sixth Netball World Cup, also got her name on the scorecard, with a long bomb secured early on in the game. The first quarter ended 20-8.

Quarter two brought a World Cup debut for London PulsesOlivia Tchine, scoring her first goal in the first few seconds of the quarter. With English chants being heard from the fans, it spurred the Vitality Roses on to speed up their attacking play and convert their turnovers to goal. However, with Kadeen Corbin shooting at 75% so far in the first half, she was making it difficult for new Leeds Rhinos signing, Geva Mentor to get round the body. Going into the half time break, the Vitality Roses lead 42-18.

The second half started with an explosive interception from London Pulse defender Funmi Fadoju. With Chelsea Pitman also coming onto the court for the Vitality Roses, they found their feet with the new formations and got back into the flow of the game. Sasha Corbin, however, worked incredibly hard to get the ball through the court for her Barbados side, with impeccable passes into the circle. The Bajan Gems went into the final quarter 43 goals down, with the Vitality Roses maintaining their lead of 65-22.

With Kadeen Corbin being moved to goal keeper for the final quarter for the Bajan Gems, Liv Tchine had to adapt to her playing style but still managed to sneak a goal in the opening seconds. With an injury to the Barbados goal defence, the team had to adapt yet again to new playing styles, but settled in style. With Tchine shooting at 88% and Cardwell at 92%, the formidable shooters were proving difficult to get around.

The Vitality Roses ended their first game with buzzer beater from Tchine to get their score to 90-29. Looking ahead to tomorrow’s game against Malawi, it’s set to be one to remember!

Make sure to follow all NSL social media channels for updates continuing over the rest of the tournament: @NetballSL on TwitterInstagram and TikTok.

 

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