Sunshine Girls fall to England
SYDNEY, Australia (CMC):
All three Caribbean teams were beaten on the second day of competition in the Netball World Cup in Sydney yesterday.
England edged Jamaica, while Trinidad & Tobago and Barbados suffered huge losses against New Zealand and Australia, respectively.
Following comfortable wins on the opening day, both Jamaica and England were fighting to maintain the Pool B lead, but England took a four-goal win over the Sunshine Girls to confirm their status as World Cup title contenders.
Jamaica, led by goal shooter Romelda Aiken, took a 14-11 first-quarter lead and doubled their score by the half-time interval. With Jhaniele Flower-Reid replacing Aiken, England stormed back to outscore their opponents, 16-9, and take the lead, 39-37, in the third quarter.
The Jamaicans were relentless, but England held onto their narrow lead to seal an important 54-50 win.
Aiken finished with 27 goals from 29 attempts, and goal attack Shanice Beckford, 17 from 20, for Jamaica. Joanne Harten, 37 from 46, and Helen Housby, 11 from 13, led the way for England.
Trinidad & Tobago, who lost to the hosts on the opening day, were no match for New Zealand in their Pool A match.
Despite Rhonda John-Davis becoming the highest test-capped player of the tournament with 150 games for the Calypso Girls, the milestone didn't stop the Silver Ferns from a second straight victory.
Goal shoot Samantha Wallace, 24 from 31, and goal attack Joelisa Cooper, nine from 11, led the shooting for Trinidad & Tobago, but New Zealand led in all quarters, 16-12, 37-25, 56-33 and, finally, 74-38 for the win.
In the other Pool match, the Barbadians were no match to Australia as they were limited to single-digit scores in the quarters.
The Australian Diamonds restricted the Bajan Gems to three goals in the first quarter, 20-3, and extended their lead, 38-7, 61-11, and 83-16 for a 67-goal margin of victory.
Trinidad & Tobago and Barbados are on today, with Jamaica playing Scotland tomorrow to determine who will join England as the second team to advance from Pool B.