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Successful title defence for Tshwane in PE

Tshwane

Defending champions Tshwane romped to a comprehensive 47-34 victory over Mangaung Metro in the final of the SPAR national netball championships at the Missionvale Sports Arena in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.

It was coach Jenny van Dyk’s sixth tournament win since the national championships in Durban last year.

Mangaung surprised Tshwane during the round-robin phase of the tournament, beating them 46-35 and the Pretoria side showed early on that they weren’t going to allow that to happen again.

They were three goals ahead after the first quarter and increased their lead with every successive quarter. By halftime, they were 25-17 ahead and they stepped up another gear in the second half, to lead 38-24 at the third interval.

Mangaung fought back hard in the final quarter, which they narrowly won, 10-9, but it was too little too late.

Tshwane defenders, Jasmine Ziegelmeier and Shadine van der Merwe, were superb in the circle, turning the ball with thrilling intercepts and winning numerous rebounds.

At the other end, Ine-Mari Venter was on song, succeeding with most of her attempts at goal as did her goal attack, Chantelle Swart.

The match, which was moved to the indoor venue because of much-needed rain in Port Elizabeth, was fast and exciting. Tshwane centre Marelize de Bruyn, did a good job of getting the ball to the circle and was well supported by wing defence Shangile Hlongwane and wing attack Lungile Mthembu.

Tshwane did more with their turnover ball than the young Mangaung team and that was the main difference between the two teams.

‘I spent a lot of time last night going over the footage from the USSA (University Sports South Africa) final last week,’ said Van Dyk.

‘We knew what kind of attack they wanted to play, and we played to our strengths rather than theirs,’ she said.

‘We started better than we did in the round-robin match, and we also had a better warm-up this time.’

Van Dyk said the team would to use the prize money from the Brutal Fruit Netball Premier League to travel to New Zealand for the international Super Club competition.

‘We leave there on 24 August and we play our first Varsity Cup match on the 26th,’ she said.

‘But it is important to go to the Super Club, because we learnt so much last year about where we need to be.’

Dr Kenneth Kaunda (Potchefstroom), who missed out on a final berth by 0.07 of a point on goal average, finished third.

Tshwane also won the Under-21 title, beating Cape Winelands 55-47.

Photo: the victorious Tshwane team, by Reg Caldecott

Results
Section A
U21 NM Bay 45 U21 Mangaung Metro 42
U21 Tswane 55 Cape winelands 47
Mangaung Metro 47 Tswane 34

Section B
U21  Zululand 41 Tswane 51
U21  49 Dr KK 35


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