Jamaica hang on to claim opening victory

Jamaica has held off a fast finishing South African side to claim victory in their opening game of the Fast5 Netball World Series.

An even first quarter saw both teams creating plenty of chances, with Jamaica taking a one-point lead into the first break.

Jamaica was able to make the most of some inconsistent offensive play from the South Africans to take a five-point lead into the half-time break.

Anna Kay Griffiths led the way for Jamaica with some strong shooting during her side’s power play in the third quarter to help extend their lead to 12 points. The shooter shone from mid-long range, recording eight two-point goals from ten attempts.

“I am very pleased with my game and we set out there to play our best and we did and I know that my team needed to shoot so I had to do that for us to win,” said Griffiths.

South Africa finished strongly with a 14-5 quarter, but were unable to wrestle back the lead from a strong Jamaican side. Goal shooter Ine-Mari Venter was pleased with the team’s efforts, however they fell just short. In heartbreaking fashion, she had a final failed attempt for a two-point shot with 18 seconds on the clock, which would have seen South Africa take the game thanks to their power play.

“I think we have to improve on getting our balls through and actually taking the shot and just chasing it down and also just taking it gently but fast ball-for-ball and just sinking the shot,” said Venter.

“I think we were a little bit way back and we had to push out power play to make up that 12 points. I think at the end we did a good job catching up but it was not enough,” she said.

The win sees Jamaica claim their fourth straight win over the South Africans and will next take on Australia while South Africa go up against New Zealand.

JAMAICA (35) defeated SOUTH AFRICA (32)

South Africa shooting statistics

Shooter 1 point goal 2 point goal 3 point supershot
Ine-Mari Venter 5/6 4/9 0/0
Charmaine Baard 0/0 1/4 3/7

Jamaica shooting statistics

Shooter 1 point goal 2 point goal 3 point supershot
Shantal Slater 9/13 0/2 0/0
Anna Kay Griffiths 1/1 8/10 0/2
Vanessa Walker 0/0 0/2 0/0

South Africa starting five – GS: Ine-Mari Venter GA: Charmaine Baard C: Lauren-Lee Christians GD: Fikile Mkhuzangwe GK: Phumza Maweni

Jamaica starting five – GS: Shantal Slater GA: Anna Kay Griffths C: Nicole Dixon GD: Althea Byfield GK: Nicole Aiken-Pinnock

South Africa power play: quarter four
Jamaica power play: quarter three

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