World Cup warmup tests – NZ v Fiji & SA

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    Taini Jamison Trophy

    NZ v Fiji – 23 July 2015 – Te Rauparaha Arena, Porirua
    NZ v S.A – 26 July 2015 – Claudelands Arena, Hamilton
    NZ v S.A – 28 July 2015 – The Trusts Arena, Auckland


    Fiji’s golden girls prepare for NZ

    The Fiji Pearls will arrive in Wellington ahead of Thursday’s one-off Test in the New World Netball Series full of confidence after winning the Netball competition at the 2015 Pacific Games in Papua New Guinea.

    Coached by New Zealander Kate Carpenter, the Fiji Pearls remained unbeaten through the Pacific Games, defeating Vanuatu, Cook Islands, Samoa and hosts Papua New Guinea in the gold medal match on Saturday.

    Fiji goal shooter Taraima Mitchell was the star of the match, sinking an impressive 93 per cent as the Pearls registered a 68-51 victory.

    Mitchell told the Pacific Games official website that the gold medal was earned on the back of a lot of hard work and preparation by the whole team.

    “I think at the end of the day our fitness came through, [thanks] to our coach pushing us,” Mitchell said.

    “There was a lot of teamwork too. It’s a big boost, winning the gold medal. The girls have all been working hard for the families and for the country, so we are pretty happy about it.”



    Plummer returns to face New Zealand

    Former Australian coach Norma Plummer crosses the ditch this month to take on the Silver Ferns in Test Match Netball once again, but this time she has a new bunch of athletes on her bench.

    When Netball South Africa made their latest phone call to Norma Plummer, it came with a request she couldn’t turn down.

    The sixth-ranked country in world Netball wanted the Australian to take them to next month’s Netball World Cup in Sydney.

    And when the two-time world championship-winning coach found out the SPAR Proteas were bound for New Zealand to take on the Silver Ferns as part of their build-up, the passion for the game prickled just a little more for the netballing guru.

    “My first thought was the Kiwis will be going ‘I thought we got rid of her and now she’s back’,” Plummer says with a laugh when contemplating her first trip back to New Zealand for over 12 months as head coach of a side. “To tell you the truth, I love coming to New Zealand and this is a whole new world for me coming back with the team from South Africa.”

    It was not in Plummer’s grand plan to step back into a head coaching role of an international side, with the job of mentoring other coaches the pathway she seemed destined to take.

    South Africa however kept in touch with the super coach following the 2011 World Championships and after Plummer attended a training camp for the SPAR Proteas in February, the players were keen to learn more.

    But it still came as a surprise, when relaxing in her Melbourne home – a glass of wine in hand and feet up on the couch – she got a phone call from South Africa’s chief executive, Blanche de la Guerre, with a proposal she felt she couldn’t refuse.

    “I just thought how lousy would you be if, when I’m quite capable of doing it, not giving them some attention,” Plummer says.

    “It was never by design, but the players had asked and honestly I felt they just needed a bit of direction.”

    It is a big ask, even for someone with the coaching experience that Plummer wields – having been in a coaching role of some sort since 1967 – to take on a national side they know little about and take them to a World Championship.

    Challenge however, is a word that drives Plummer.

    “Of course I’m not underestimating the challenge – you’ve got Lisa Alexander (Australia) and Wai (Taumaunu – Silver Ferns) who have had four years with their team and I’m going to have three weeks. It puts it into perspective and I take that on board, take it on the chin and say ‘let’s go and give it a good crack’.”

    Plummer has been impressed with what she has seen in South Africa so far having taken the SPAR Proteas to the Diamond Challenge where they went unbeaten including two victories over Malawi – their first since 2012.

    “They’ve responded beautifully,” she says. “They’re quite capable but they just need direction.”

    And Plummer sees the series against the Silver Ferns as a key opportunity to replicate the pressures they will face when they head to Sydney for next month’s world event.

    “Going to New Zealand will give them the intensity so they know what they’ve got to work at,” she says. “Seriously, there are some great athletes in this side but there’s just a thirst for knowledge. And what better place to come to, to gauge how you’re tracking?”




    New Zealand:
    Jodi Brown
    Kayla Cullen
    Leana de Bruin
    Shannon Francois
    Katrina Grant
    Phoenix Karaka
    Casey Kopua (capt)
    Laura Langman
    Bailey Mes
    Malia Paseka
    Grace Rasmussen
    Maria Tutaia

    Jane Costello
    Nina Crikisuva
    Sera Dakuitoga
    Episake Kahatoka
    Maria Lutua
    Taraima Mitchell
    Alisi Naqiri
    Kelera Nawai
    Mere Rabuka-Neiliko
    Afa Rusevakula
    Alesi Waqa
    Matila Waqanidrola

    South Africa:
    Erin Burger
    Elsunet du Plessis
    Maryka Holtzhausen (capt)
    Rochelle Lawson
    Lindie Lombard
    Izette Lubbe
    Phumza Maweni
    Karla Mostert
    Bongiwe Msomi
    Precious Mthembu
    Adele Niemand
    Lenize Potgieter




    Would have thought SA and Fiji might play a match together. Would probably be closer than their games against New Zealand.



    Am so looking forward to these games.

    Mind you they will be analysed to the nth degree to find positives and negatives for the SFs.

    Damned if you do and damned if you don’t for Taumaunu.



    Damned if you do and damned if you don’t for Taumaunu.

    Especially if SA happen to beat them



    Am so looking forward to these games. Mind you they will be analysed to the nth degree to find positives and negatives for the SFs. Damned if you do and damned if you don’t for Taumaunu.

    I agree! Plus we should see some really competitive netball from the Ferns, as all players would be showing their worth and trying to gain the starting 7 spot. Really looking forward to this!



    Just got told by PortiaV that today’s game is on Foxtel – Fox Sports 4 at 17:30. The other games are being shown as well.



    Awesome , thanks V :)



    Sorry, should have mentioned that. It had been mentioned on a couple of other threads, so I sort of assumed that those people with Foxtel would know by now.



    Yay netball again, has been a stressful few weeks not being able to watch.



    GS Bailey Mes
    GA Maria Tutaia
    WA Grace Rassmussen
    C Shannon Francois
    WD Laura Langman
    GD Katrina Grant
    GK Casey Kopua

    GS Taraima Mitchell
    GA Maria Lutua
    WA Nina Cirikisuva
    C Alesi Waqa
    WD Sera Dakuitoga
    GD Matila Vitorina Waqanidrola
    GK Mere Rabuka Neiliko




    Forgot to record this game! Hoping I make it home from work in time to watch it on Foxtel.

    Ferns line up looks good – finally Langman at WD!!



    Langman started her Ferns carer at WD, was much better there.



    Hoping Francois can stamp her mark on the C bib tonight.

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