Jamaica’s Sunshine Girls will face world champions New Zealand in today’s final of the Vitality Netball Nations Cup at the Copper Box Arena in London. Match time is noon.
The Jamaicans secured their spot in the final of the championships after an exciting 70-66 victory over hosts England at the same venue yesterday.
The Sunshine Girls, ranked fourth in the world, one place below England, dominated yesterday’s match from the opening whistle as they led in all four quarters. The Connie Francis-coached girls were ahead 19-15 at the end of the first quarter and 39-31 at half-time.
Jamaica outscored their opponents 18-14 in the third stanza for a 57-45 lead at the end of the third quarter. The English team tried desperately to get back into the match in the fourth period but the Jamaicans held on in the final minutes to secure victory.
The Sunshine Girls will be seeking revenge in today’s final after they were thrashed 71-45 when the teams met in the group stages last Wednesday in Birmingham.
Francis said she is confident that they will give a good account of themselves against the world number two ranked Silver Ferns in today’s final.
“I am very excited about this match because we know that they are a very good team and we know that we are going up against world-class netballers,” said Francis. “I think going up against New Zealand, we have to stay in the game and stay within the game plan and stay disciplined right throughout the match,” she added.
Reflecting on her team’s victory over England, Francis said: “I am very happy because I thought that we played much better than in previous games.”
Meanwhile, England and South Africa will meet in the third-place play-off at 9:30 a.m.