Namibia Correctional Service (NCS) made history on Saturday by becoming the first-ever MTC Namibia Netball Premier League champions after a scintillating draw against Tigers in the last match of the league.
NCS only needed a draw to win and the ladies pulled it off in breath-taking manner, equalising 30-all with seconds left on the clock. In a tightly-contested match, NSC showed strength from the onset, scoring first and winning the first quarter.
Tigers brought their A-game from the second quarter onwards, and went on the win that quarter 15-13 and the third quarter 23-22.
The Ingwenyama played hard with long balls and accurate catching to maintain their narrow lead and looked set to win, but NCS fought back and equalised just in time.
NCS and Mighty Gunners both ended on 20 points but NCS had a better goal difference, relegating Gunners to second position overall and Tigers third.
Speaking to this publication after being crowned champions, the NSC coach Manuel Tjivera admitted that it was not an easy game as their opponents had brought the heat to the court.
“I am very pleased. I must say it was a very good performance from my team. They showed great skills and finally we managed to win the first-ever netball premier league, which will forever remain in the history books,” he said excitedly.
“The game was competitive, every team displayed great skills but there were few shortcomings from my team, especially in the centre. It played a big role and I had to resort to bringing in someone new all the time. Our opponents pushed us to the level where we should have given up but we did not give up,” he said
NCS captain, Foxy Pura, could not contain her excitement.
“I don’t have much to say but I am happy with the result and I think we deserved to win the title. We have worked hard throughout the season to ensure we remain on course. I am proud of all my teammates and my coach for pushing us all season long to make this dream come true,” Pura told this publication.
NCS won N$ 40 000, Gunners N$ 35 000 and Tigers 25 000.
Soon after the final, MTC executive Tim Ekandjo announced massively-increased purses for the next premier league season, with the winners set to get N$ 250 000, runners-up N$ 150 000 and third-best N$ 100 000.
“We, therefore, wish to congratulate you on ending the first inaugural MTC Netball Premier League successfully. The final matches were indeed mouth-watering. We know that the league might have had some challenges but we are proud that you managed it very well without any disruption or negative publicity,” said Ekandjo.
Rest of the results:
Namibia Navy 69- 25 United 12
Golden Girls 55- 31 Rebels
Dollar Star 29 -32 Young Stars
Grootfontein 28-32 Rebels
Mighty Gunners 63 – 19 United 12