Commonwealth Games: Silver Ferns to battle it out for bronze after heavy defeat to Australia

  • 14/04/2018
Commonwealth Games: Silver Ferns to battle it out for bronze after heavy defeat to Australia
Photo credit: Photosport

New Zealand's nightmare Commonwealth Games netball run has continued, the Silver Ferns stumbling to a 65-44 semi-final defeat to Australia.

The loss means Australia will tackle England in Sunday's final, leaving New Zealand to play off for bronze against Jamaica after they were pipped 56-55 by England in the other semi-final.

It will be the first time in 20 years, since netball's introduction to the Games at Kuala Lumpur in 1998, that the Kiwis haven't made the final.

Australia were too quick through the middle, too accurate on the shot, and far too impenetrable defensively right through the court.

They led 18-12 at the end of the first quarter, stretching out to 32-21 at half- time as the Ferns struggled to convert the scraps of possession they gleaned into points on the board.

The Diamonds took the third quarter 18-9 to lead 50-30 at the three-quarter mark, finishing the final quarter with ruthless efficiency to wrap up the win.

Maria Folau shouldered the burden of New Zealand's shooting duties, with first Te Paea Selby-Rickit then Bailey Mes and finally Ameliaranne Ekenasio struggling to shake the untiring attentions of returning goal keeper Laura Geitz.

Between them, the trio sunk 12 from 17 for the match, with Folau netting 32 from 41.

In all, the Kiwi shooters shot at 76 per cent accuracy, in stark contrast to the Diamonds goalers who missed just six shots all night for 92 per cent.

Caitlin Bassett missed just one of her 18 attempts, Caitlin Thwaite shot 24 of 25, rejuvenated goal attack Susan Pettit completed 15 from 16, and Steph Wood 9 from 12.

NZN