Crinums and Tornados Pull Out All the Stops to Claim Dramatic Victories

The Crinums displayed an authoritative second half performance against the Southern Stings to secure a 52-42 victory in the Telkom Netball League at Heartfelt Arena on Sunday, 25 June 2023.

The Free State Crinums stumbled out of the blocks in the beginning of the game, failing to add to the only goal that they had scored at the time. The Stings found their rhythm as soon as the match got underway and started to set themselves apart. The Crinums started picking up momentum and showcased their defensive expertise, closing the gap to just one goal.

The stage was set for a captivating second quarter and the Crinums wasted no time in taking the lead for the first time. The Crinums continued to congest the mid-court, preventing the ball from the entering the Stings’ goal third. Coach Nicolene Martin then made some changes, moving Nerine Koopman to Centre and introducing Adri Kannemeyer on Wing Attack. The changes proved profitable, helping the Stings trail by one goal at half-time.

The Stings were cursed with poor ball placement in the third quarter, giving the Crinums a platform to shine with intercepts. Crinums shooting pair of Lefebre Rademan and Rolene Streutker, shared the responsibilities very well in the circle and converted at every chance, handing the Free State team a seven-goal advantage. The Crinums’ peerless fourth quarter performance made it impossible for the Stings to restore parity, as they continued to stretch their lead in order to maintain their top position on the Division One log.

In Division Two, the Sunbirds and the Tornados brought the same intensity at the start of the game and were quite evenly matched in their efforts. The Sunbirds had already claimed five intercepts in the first quarter but were unable to convert all the gains that presented themselves and were only leading by just one goal in the opening stanza. Sunbirds Goal Keeper Palesa Mbukwana stood out in second quarter with her cheeky intercepts and coach Freda Kemp called for strategic stoppage when the Tornados were four goals behind. The ted talk didn’t grind out an improvement from the Western Cape team, who continued to have no clear drives and struggled to find each other.

Kemp made two defensive changes in the third quarter in an attempt to overturn a five-goal deficit. The Tornados applied relentless pressure, forcing errant passes and missed shots from the Sunbirds. It was now Thembi Mdluli’s turn to call her team out for the lack of discipline which allowed the Tornados to close the gap to just two goals, three minutes before the end of the championship quarter. Both coaches opted to make mid-court changes in the final quarter, to ramp up the pressure.

The Tornados’ composure on attack saw them take a one goal lead with just two minutes remaining on the clock. Sunbirds shooters Atacia Mbuyane and Zanneke Ras both fumbled an opportunity to salvage a draw in the final seconds of the match. Liandré Schoeman was instrumental for handing the Tornados a 40-39 win and was named the Player of the Match for shooting thirty-nine of the forty goals.

The Limpopo teams also faced off this afternoon, once again the Baobabs secured another decisive 57-35 win against the Lilies. The Lilies knew already in the first quarter, the mammoth task that lay ahead when they were trailing by fourteen goals. A new shooting combination produced the goods for the Lilies, winning the third quarter 15-11, but their valiant effort in the latter stages of the match was too little, too late.

Results: Telkom Netball League on Sunday, 25 June 2023

Comets 40-48 Sonoblomo

Diamonds 41-50 Queens

Flames 45-54 Jaguars

Lilies 35-57 Baobabs

Crinums 52-42 Stings

Sunbirds 39-40 Tornados

Fixtures: Telkom Netball League on Monday, 26 June 2023

08:00|Div.2|Comets vs Diamonds

10:00|Div.2|Baobabs vs Tornados

12:00|Div.1|Flames vs Crinums

14:00|Div.2|Sonoblomo vs Sunbirds

16:00|Div.1|Stars vs Fireballs

18:00|Div.1|Aloes vs Stings

With editing by gsport

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