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HomeSportSouth Africa beat Scotland to lift SPAR Diamond Challenge

South Africa beat Scotland to lift SPAR Diamond Challenge

South Africa beat Scotland to lift SPAR Diamond Challenge

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Tshwane — Norma Plummer has been in the game of netball way too long to know not to get too carried away by small victories.

And so it was that while the crowd and just about everyone inside the Rembrandt Hall at the University of Pretoria was excitedly celebrating the team's 54-36 victory over Scotland to clinch the SPAR Diamond Challenge, Plummer was only too glad to give perspective to it all.

"This is not the World Cup yet, we still have a lot of work to do."

Do not, however, misconstrue that to mean that Plummer was not pleased with what her team achieved in her maiden week back as coach since she took them to the World Cup back in 2019.

She admitted that they had a poor start to a match that they ended up winning at a canter.

"It was a little bit sluggish. But it was because I wanted to see the new players under pressure. If I don't give these young players the opportunity they won't know what the pressure is."

Pressured as they were, Plummer was impressed by how the juniors accounted for themselves.

"I was really pleased with what they did and they need to understand the pressure and they learnt of that in the first quarter and in the second."

The hosts enjoyed a 10-8 lead at the end of the quarter but found themselves trailing by two midway through the second as the Thistles turned on the heat.

But they got back into it to go to half-time 24-20 up. Plummer then brought on the seniors and the Proteas took total control of the tie.

"We worked not like a machine early on but after I put in the senior players and in the last quarter, we were dominating the game."

The Proteas also dominated the individual awards, with Ine-Mari Venter crowned the best shooter, Khanyisa Chikwane the player of the tournament and Phumza Maweni the best defence while the President XII’s Didintle Keebine walked away with the sportsmanship award.

Scotland's Iona Christian was the best centre.

The team will take a three-day break before going into a two-week camp in Stellenbosch.

They will then play a Quad series in January before they tour Australia in February as part of their build-up to the World Cup in July.


IOL Sport

Original Article

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