Jewels defeat favoured Tonga

Home National Jewels defeat favoured Tonga
Jewels defeat favoured Tonga

The Debmarine Desert Jewels delivered an electrifying 54-51 victory against the heavily-favoured eighth-ranked Tonga team yesterday in the ongoing 2024 Pacific Netball Series at the Nissan Arena in Brisbane, Australia. 

Ranked 20th in the world, the Namibians showcased their skill and determination to defeat the defending champions in their second match in Brisbane, thus marking a significant achievement in their tournament journey. 

This impressive win has set the stage for a promising performance against the 24th-ranked Singaporean side, scheduled for today at 9h00.

Namibian head coach Julene Meyer expressed her satisfaction with the team’s performance, noting that the players rose to the occasion, despite their 55-47 loss to Samoa on Monday in their opening encounter.

“We are happy with our win. The players did justice to themselves. Our attack was much improved, showing great composure under pressure. We handled the ball with patience, and were clinical in our execution. Our defence was exceptional, though we still need to work on side defence, coverage and the back,” said Meyer. 

She emphasised the importance of maintaining their best form against Singapore, acknowledging the different styles of play they will encounter. Meyer’s focus is also to ensure the team maintains its momentum, and to address any tactical adjustments needed to overcome the varied playing styles of their upcoming opponents.

Reflecting on the victory, player Cornelia Mupenda highlighted their extensive 10-day training camp, which prepared them for the competition. “We stuck to the game plan, and it worked in our favour. 

I am proud of the girls. To our supporters, please continue doing what you are doing,” said Mupenda. She was particularly excited about the match against Tonga, marking the first time they played against such a strong opponent.

Looking ahead, the Namibians have a challenging schedule. They will face the Australian First Nations team tomorrow at 7h00, and Fiji on Friday at 11h00. The playoffs and grand final are scheduled for Saturday, where the Desert Jewels aim to continue their impressive run and compete for the championship.