Birmingham Commonwealth Games: Silver Ferns lament lack of fight, as another disappointing Games result looms

The Silver Ferns have suffered a brutal defeat at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games, knocked out in the semi-final by a slick Jamaican side, who banked 16 more goals than the Kiwis on Saturday (NZ time). 

New Zealand now have a huge fight ahead to win a medal at these Games - taking on the hosts in the bronze-medal match  - while Jamaica will appear in the final for the first time in Commonwealth history. 

You’d be forgiven for thinking Jamaica had just won the gold, judging by their delirious celebrations - fuelled by a historic victory over the Ferns.

The gusto of the green and yellows hid the hushed Kiwi fans, who had arrived at the match confident.

But it wasn’t close, not even for a minute. From the first whistle, the day was Jamaica's.

"We just weren't good enough," coach Dame Noeline Taurua said after the game. "It showed the gulf in individuals, gulf in our fight and in our competitiveness."

The Silver Ferns suffered a frenzy of fast turnovers and were down 14 by half time, as Dame Noeline urged her team to play for pride.

"I wasn't going to say it was all over and done with, but it's hard to get the ball out of their attacking end," she admitted.

By full time, the Ferns began to process a demoralising defeat.

"It hurts a lot," said captain Gina Crampton. "I feel like everything we had done was right, all the progress we had made to get us to this point.

"We have done all the work, not showing what we are capable of is really disappointing."

But there’s no taking away from the Sunshine Girls, who deservedly basked in the glow of their performance. This is the best Jamaica has ever been.

"They are smooth," noted Taurua.

Their run at the games has been historic - beating Australia for the first time - and now booking a spot at the big dance.  

While Jamica have never made a grand final at the Commonwealth Games, the Silver Ferns - once again - find themselves battling for bronze. 

Their disastrous campaign at Gold Coast 2018 ended in defeat in their bronze medal playoff match against Jamaica, as they missed out on the podium for the first time in Commonwealth Games history.

"We've got a lot to fight for," insisted Cranmpton. "We want to show pride in the silver fern and the silver fern dress."