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Success for Netball minnow Malawi

21 Mar 06 08:50
New Zealander Irene Van Dyk 

New Zealander Irene Van Dyk
aims for another goal in the
Silver Ferns' victory over
South Africa.

The Netball field continues to narrow, with Australia defeating Samoa 78-47 and netballing minnow Malawi securing a victory over St Vincent and Grenadines 44-66. Gold medal favourite New Zealand thrashed South Africa 74-37 and Wales beat Singapore 45-36 in the closest match of the day.

Australia defeats Samoa 
Samoa scored the first goal of its match, but Australia responded quickly with tight defence and speed-driven attack. Samoan shooter Catherine Latu proved a challenge to Australian Goal Keeper Susan Fuhrmann, but Australia led by the end of the first quarter, mainly thanks to shooter Susan Pratley's accuracy and timing.

Jessica Shynn of Australia had a brilliant first half, her explosive power and reliable feeding proving too much for the Samoan backline. Samoa began the third quarter with a line-up change and dramatically lifted its game in the second half, with Fuimaono and Goal Attack Malu Faasavalu dominating the circle and scoring 11 goals in the third quarter to Australia's 14.

Both teams continued to play strongly in the final quarter. The inclusion of veteran Janine Ilitch to Australia's defence added a little more intensity to the defensive circle. Australian powered forward, leaving Samoa behind in a clean 78-47 victory.

Malawi defeats St Vincent and Grenadines
Malawi meanwhile lost key Goal Attack Mary Waya to injury in the early minutes of the first quarter but direct passing and the height and strength of shooter Linda Magombo helped it prevail over a flat St Vincent and Grenadines, ending the first quarter 18-9.

St Vincent and Grenadines scored better in the second quarter thanks to shooter Galeine Gordon's accuracy, but a string of penalties by goal keeper Joeana Christopher allowed Malawi to stretch the lead 36-22 by half-time.

Despite numerous injury calls, both teams battled through the last half of the game. St Vincent and Grenadines struggled to keep up the pace, with Malawi securing a comfortable 22 goal victory. Key players of the day were Centre Peace Chawinga and Goal Keeper Esther Nkhoma of Malawi, who played vital attack and defence roles.

New Zealand defeats South Africa
Gold medal favourite New Zealand has defeated South Africa 74-37 in a commanding performance with a number of unforced errors and crowding down the court. New Zealand held a tight mid-court defence which hindered South Africa, which scored just five goals in the second quarter.

With New Zealand's Leana De Bruin and Vilimaina Davu in defence, they were able to contain the towering South African Sindisiwe Gumede from penetrating the shooting circle.

Down the other end, Irene Van Dyk and veteran Belinda Colling were unstoppable in the New Zealand goal circle. The height, skill and experience of the New Zealand shooters was too much for the South African defence of Leigh-Ann Zackey and Karin Venter

Despite staying with the New Zealanders during the third quarter, the Silver Ferns' lead was never threatened. With both the Australian and English teams watching from the sidelines, New Zealand continued its commanding performance to close out the match with a 37 goal defeat of South Africa.

Wales v Singapore
The Welsh team have defeated Singapore 45-36 despite a last quarter burst from the losing side. 

- with Games News Service

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