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‘Angry’ Sunshine Girls ask for support

Published:Wednesday | July 17, 2019 | 12:00 AMRobert Bailey/Gleaner Writer


Jamaica’s senior netball captain Jhaniele Fowler is urging netball fans in the country not to give up on the Sunshine Girls despite their poor showing at the ongoing Vitality Netball World Cup.

Fowler described the mood of the players following the results, pointing to anger and shock.

The Sunshine Girls are on the verge of missing out on a place in the semi-finals, after suffering back-to-back defeats to South Africa and host England in their last two matches in the competition.

The number-two ranked Jamaicans lost 55-52 to the Proteas, before being brushed aside 56-48 by England to essentially kill their medal hopes.

The results now mean that the Jamaicans will have to win their remaining matches and hope for the extremely unlikely result of both South Africa and England losing their remaining two fixtures.

If, as is now expected, they fail to make it into the last four, this will be the first time since 1995 that the Jamaicans will be missing the semi-finals of the competition.

Fowler, who is rated as the best goal shooter in the world, said that the Sunshine Girls were distraught by Monday’s defeat to England, and she said that they need all the support that they can get in these tough times.

“We know that we have disappointed everyone because the expectations were very high, but still continue to support us,” said Fowler.

“It is sports, the ball is round. We win some and we lose some, and we are doing our best to fight it out there on (the) court and represent the country well,” she said.

She added that both defeats had taken a toll on the players, who she said were all hurt and shocked by the results.

“We had a sleepless night after the defeat against England,” said Fowler.

“We got tense in the meeting that we had (Tuesday), because a lot of anger was there because we had lost,” she said. “There was some tension, until we started talking and just released everything out and just got the air clear, and so everybody got relaxed and just reset.”

Fowler outlined that the Sunshine Girls will be pulling out all the stops to ensure that they end the championships on a high.

“We have two games to go and so we know that we just have to take it one game at a time,” said Fowler.

“We know that every team comes out for Jamaica hard and gunning, but we are just going to go out there and stamp our class and show them that we are here, not because we are not good enough, but we are here because of our own errors,” she said.