Jamaica’s Under 21 Netballers made a winning start to the INF Netball World Youth Cup in Botswana this morning.
This after struggling before eventually clipping Cook Island 43-41 in their opening game in Pool C.
It was never a pretty victory for Jamaica who had to fight tooth and nail against the Cook Island to secure a nail-biting win. The Sunshine Girls Jamaicans came out jittery in the first quarter after making some simple mistakes but managed to win it 12-8 , and when the second quarter rolled in Cook Island stepped up the tempo of their game, and were now running at the speed of the Jamaicans and converting even more goals as Team Jamaica struggled in defense.
While Jamaica was called for contact, and stepping on several occasions, the Cook Island took care of every centre passes and possessions and ended the half in front 20-18.
It was the same intensity from Cook Island in the third quarter, who outscored the green and black standard bearers 28-32, before Jamaica rallied with several steals and more accuracy from Shooters Shimona Nelson and Hasana Williams to put the contest to bed. Nelson executed the shot of the game, as after a miss from Williams she grabbed the rebound while falling out of bound and scored on the play, which sent the few Jamaican fans in attendance into a frenzy.
The Jamaican Coach Janet Guy said, “It was tough game for the Jamaicans who really were put to the test today, and while there were some errors, I happy for the win as the girls who are quite aware for the magnitude of the task at hand.”
Meanwhile in earlier games, Defending Champions New Zealand stopped Northern Ireland 89-22 in Pool A’, while else-where in the same pool Scotland were 69-48 winners over Sr-lanka.
Over in Pool B’ Australia hammered Zimbabwe 86-33, while South Africa shut out Caribbean side Barbados 62-30, in Pool D’ Fiji knocked off Trinidad 55-28, and England were 69-23 winners over Wales.