Home Sport She-cranes plunder Jewels in Tri-Nations tournament

She-cranes plunder Jewels in Tri-Nations tournament

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Uganda beat Namibia in their SPAR Challenge Tri Nations netball tournament match on Monday, while the Baby Proteas were too good for the President’s XII.

Refiloe Nketsa of the SPAR Baby Proteas in action against the President’s XII during the 2021 SPAR Challenge Series at Cape Town International Convention Centre on March 29, 2021 in Cape Town, South Africa. Picture: Reg Caldecott

CAPE TOWN – The Ugandan She-Cranes continued their winning ways against the Namibian Debmarine Desert Jewels at the SPAR Challenge Tri-Nations netball tournament at the Cape Town International Conference Centre on Monday, beating them 57-27 after leading 31 nine at halftime.

It was their third victory over Namibia in the tournament.

Uganda dominated throughout, although the Desert Jewels came back in the last quarter, losing it by just one goal.

“It was a runaway train,” said Namibian assistant coach Chrisna Lombard.

“It was a disappointing performance. They just didn’t stick to the game plan we had worked out. We did well in the last quarter, but it was too little too late.”

The Most Valued Player, Ugandan goalkeeper Shaffie Nalwanja, said Uganda had expected a bigger challenge from Namibia.

“But what we really want to do is to beat the SPAR Proteas in our final game on Wednesday.”

The SPAR Proteas lead the three-match series 2-0.

Earlier, the President’s XII bounced back from their defeat at the hands of the SPAR Baby Proteas on Sunday to beat the Under-21 side 52-46 in the curtain-raiser match. It was the fourth match between the two teams. The President’s XII has won three and the SPAR Baby Proteas one.

The SPAR Baby Proteas led for the first eight minutes before the President’s XII stepped up a gear and went into the lead, winning the first quarter 15-10. The Baby Proteas fought back hard and won the second quarter by 12 goals to eight, to trail by just one goal at halftime (23-22).

The match was played at pace, with both sides moving the ball at speed. The Baby Proteas were guilty of some wild passes and also conceded too many penalties. But they never gave up and fought hard until the end.

President’s XII coach Jenny van Dyk was pleased that her team had come back from defeat on Sunday to claim victory on Monday.

“Both teams are suffering bitter disappointments,” she said.

“The President’s XII because many of them thought this was their opportunity to grab a spot in the national team, and the SPAR Baby Proteas because the World Youth Cup in Fiji has been cancelled. So both teams have something to prove.

Sarah Nakiyangu of the Uganda She-Cranes (r) and Monica Gomases of the Debmarine Desert Jewels in action during the 2021 SPAR Challenge Series at Cape Town International Convention Centre on March 29, 2021 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Picture by Reg Caldecott)

“What has pleased me is that instead of trying to show why they should have been chosen for the national team, my players have gelled and worked for one another.”

She praised the SPAR Baby Proteas, saying there were many talented players coming through.

SPAR Baby Proteas coach Elsje Jordaan said although she was a little disappointed her team had not been able to follow Sunday’s victory with another success, she was very excited because it had been a terrific game of netball.

“These young players are learning all the time. There is so much talent out there – I really believe Netball South Africa should have a High Performance programme for young players. At the moment we are only scratching the surface of all the talent available.”

The SPAR Baby Proteas and the President’s XII meet for the fifth time on Tuesday afternoon, before the Test match between the SPAR Proteas and Namibia at 6pm.

There will be no spectators at the matches, which will be televised live on Supersport Variety 4.

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