Zambia has been booted out of the Netball World Cup taking place in Sydney, Australia after losing 71-44 to Wales.
Katwishi Bwalya reports that this is the second loss Zambia has suffered at the world tournament having lost to Uganda in the opening game.
The loss means that Zambia has been booted out and will now have to rely on a formality game against Fiji who have also been booted.
The Zambian queens will now shift their attentions to the rankings games which will determine rankings.
Zambia’s Lucy Jere was outstanding in the game but despite the Zambian queens displaying some athletic passes of play, Wales was able to build on their lead, with the score reading in their favour 37-22 at half time.
Zambian coach Charles Zulu says he did not expect to lose to Wales and called the game tough.
And Captain Annie Mukamba says silly mistakes by the team cost them the game.
Meanwhile, Malawi broke the netball record last night when they beat Sri-Lanka 101-18 the highest of the competition and was the first team to have a three figured score line.
Wales impressive in Day 3 clash
Eighth ranked Wales entered the contest with the 18th-ranked Zambian Chipolopolo as favourites and didn’t disappoint their loyal fans with a 71-44 victory over the African nation.
Zambia’s adoption of the bounce pass was prolific, particularly in their shooting circle in trying to combat the height deficit to Wales, and while at times the Chipolopolo were able to match Wales for pace, they failed to combat the average 15cm height difference.
Strong performances by Zambia’s Lucy Jere, with the shooter scoring the bulk of their goals. Welsh players, centre Kyra Jones and wing attack Bethan Dyke with 31 centre pass receives.
The first quarter proved to be a tight contest with both teams suffering from errors trying to stamp their mark on the game. The crowd were enamoured with the unique one-handed style of Zambian shooters Elizabeth Bwalya and Jere while Welsh shooters Emma Thomas and Chelsea Lewis received solid delivery from centre Kyra Jones driving strongly onto the circle, helping her side to a 14-11 at quarter time.
Nichola James was brought onto wing defence for Wales in the second quarter as the team was able to reduce their errors and capitalise on the mistakes of the Zambian team, helped by a stunning rejection by Welsh goal keeper Rosanna Pretorius. Despite the Chipolopolo displaying some athletic passages of play, Wales was able to build on their lead, the score reading in their favour 37-22 at half time.
Wales looked again to their bench at the start of the third quarter, bringing on debutant Lateisha Kidgner at goal keeper and Kelly Morgan at goal defence. In trying to bridge the gap, Zambia also made changes, bringing on Carol Moono at wing attack and Petronella Bwalya at wing defence. Yvonne Kaholo was brought on for the Chipolopolo after Agness Chingambo suffered an injury early in the quarter. As the Welsh connections improved across the court, they were able to extend their lead to 57-34 at half time.
Wales used their lead in the final term to give bench players Georgia Rowe and Sara Bell some court time in the shooting circle, while a beautiful intercept by one of the shortest players in the competition, Zambia’s Naomi Changwe got the crowd excited with Wales running away eventual winters 71-44.
In looking forward to their final preliminary match of Pool D against Uganda tomorrow, Wales’ Kyra Jones commented “… we’re just going to focus on ourselves, I know this afternoon we’re going to go over some video footage, look to sort some work-ons, especially obviously take some of the good stuff we’ve done from today and look to perform for 60 minutes tomorrow.”