Proteas netball coach considers changes after narrow first Test defeat to Roses

30 November 2019 - 11:36 By MAHLATSE MPHAHLELE in Cape Town
Shadine van der Merwe of the Spar Proteas with the Player of the Match award won in the first Spar Challenge International Netball Test Series match between South Africa and England at Bellville Velodrome on Friday night.
Shadine van der Merwe of the Spar Proteas with the Player of the Match award won in the first Spar Challenge International Netball Test Series match between South Africa and England at Bellville Velodrome on Friday night.
Image: Reg Caldecott

South Africa coach Dorette Badenhorst may make changes for the second match of the netball Test series against England at the Bellville Velodrome in Cape Town on Saturday (3pm).

The Proteas lost 63-58 in extra time to the England Roses in the opening match on Friday night and they have to win on Saturday to level the three match series 1-1.

Faced with the short turnaround, Badenhorst said after Friday’s loss that their post-match analysis will answer the questions on what went wrong in the first Test and how they will need to react on Saturday.

“We need to go back and analyse this match and see what went wrong, why we can’t lead the quarters, and why there are not enough options for us to play the ball forward,” she said.

“We have a very short time for recovery. A player like Shadine van der Merwe played very hard and it will affect their bodies on Saturday. We must recover well, do our analysis and maybe bring in or two other players to have bodies that are 100 percent for battle.”

Van der Merwe was named the player of the match for her strong performance in defence with Phumza Maweni.

Examining the defeat, Badenshorst admitted that South Africa did not start well in the first and second quarters, where England went to the break leading.

“It was a great game from England but we came back strong in the third quarter. On the attack, we really need to keep possession more, get more players fetching the ball and assisting in the attack.

“We were good in defence and managed to turn enough balls to win this game. We just need to find a way to improve on the attack and have stronger leads.

“A player like Bongi Msomi is a brilliant player but she had three bad passes from long distances, and I decided to take her off because she struggled on wing attack and I wanted a little bit of body with Izette Griesel there.

“I am not saying I will not start with Izette in the next game but I think we need to make sure that our leads are a little bit stronger from our centres.

“We could have beaten them but again it’s about stronger leads. I don’t know if it’s fitness or just lack of guts. I thought we can take them in that last quarter because we had a brilliant game.”


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