The Proteas had a shaky quarter and committed a few mistakes which England punished them for and at the end of the first quarter
The final day of the 2020 Vitality Nations Cup saw World Champions, the New Zealand Silver Ferns beat the Sunshine Girls of Jamaica 67-56 to lift the inaugural Vitality Nations Cup trophy.
However, before the final, the SPAR Proteas took on the Vitality Roses in what has been dubbed the battle of the flowers for the bronze medal, which England narrowly won by two points.
Earlier in the week South Africa and the hosts England played what was labelled a game of two halves. South Africa led and won the first two quarters and England overtook them to win 58 -54.
The SPAR Proteas have really gotten better with each game that passed and this was evident in how they played against World Champions New Zealand on Saturday. The coaching duo of Dorette Badenhorst and Dumisani Chauke went into this their final game with one objective in mind and that was to keep up the momentum and possibly beat England in their own back yard.
South Africa made two changes to the team that played New Zealand on Saturday, Khanyisa Chawane got a start at Centre in place of Rome Dreyer (pictured) and Izette Griesel at Wing Attack ahead of Captain Bongiwe Msomi.
The Proteas had a shaky quarter and committed a few mistakes which England punished them for and at the end of the first quarter, it was the host that enjoyed an 18 -15 lead.
It was England that kept pushing and took an overall lead of 36 -29 at half-time. England started the third quarter where they left off before half-time and kept up the momentum.
At the end of the third quarter, it was England who were still upfront even though South Africa who had won the quarter 19 -13. The third-quarter score was 49 -48 in favour of the hosts.
The visitors pushed England in every part of the game and made sure that they convert their chances making England chase the game in the last seven minutes of the match. The game went all the way to the last second and England eventually won the match 65-63.
England Captain Natalie Haythornthwaite who was also playing her 50th Test match was the Player of the Match on the day. England finished third at the 2020 Vitality Netball Nations Cup.
“I am proud of the ladies, they really fought hard for each other on court even though we had some calls going against us, we soldiered on. As we head back home we take with us a lot of lessons and I am sure we are a better team leaving here.
“Playing against the best in the world has done us a whole lot of good and I am certain that we will strive to be better as we go along,” said SPAR Proteas head coach Dorette Badenhorst.