Sydney- The Proteas had a confidence-boosting victory over Wales in their first match
in the second round of the Netball World Cup in Sydney on Tuesday, beating the
Welsh team 60-38.
Wales had sailed
through the opening round, winning all three of their matches, but South Africa
proved too much for them as they were never really in contention.
Goalkeeper Lenize Potgieter was on song, particularly in the first quarter,
when she succeeded with every attempt at goal.
At the end of the first
quarter, the Proteas were 15-10 ahead. By half-time, South Africa had
stretched their lead to the critical margin of 10 goals, with the score 31-21.
Coach Norma Plummer
appeared to have had stern words with the players during the break, because
they stormed back in the third quarter, outscoring Wales by 24-8.
It was probably their best quarter of the tournament with South Africa
achieving five intercepts and five turnovers.
Once again, coach Plummer rang the changes, bringing on fresh legs and making sure that most of
her players got precious time on court ahead of matches against Australia and
The final quarter was
more subdued, as Wales battled hard to make up the deficit. It was the
closest quarter, with South Africa scoring just two more goals than Wales.
Plummer seemed relatively
pleased with the team’s performance.
“I thought they were
a bit lethargic at the beginning. I told them after their warm-up that
they were too relaxed and they had to step up because we are now at the
business end of the carnival,” she said.
“I was a bit
disappointed in the first half when they were a little flat, but I made some
changes at half-time and brought some new life into their movement.”
Wing attack Bongi
Msomi said the match had been a confidence booster.
“It was about
sticking to the game plan and implement the strategies that have been worked
out,” she said.
“We were able to do
that today. We expected them to come hard at us, especially after the game they
played yesterday (when Wales narrowly beat Uganda 49-47 in their final preliminary
round match). I think they were confident, but we put the tactics we’ve
worked on into practice. We needed this win before we play Australia.”
South Africa play
defending champions Australia on Wednesday and world No 3 England on
Friday. The Proteas need to win one of these matches to qualify for the