Zanne-Marie Pienaar (Gauteng North) in action against Gauteng Central, during Day 3 of the SPAR National Netball Championships, at the University of Johannesburg on 8 August, 2012. Photo: Reg Caldecott / Gallo Images

Defending champions Gauteng North continued their march to the next round on the third day of the SPAR National Netball Championships at the University of Johannesburg on Wednesday, with decisive victories over Gauteng Central and Frances Baard (Griqualand West).

Gauteng North beat their neighbours 50-35, and thrashed Frances Baard 67-47. With three rounds of play to make up after play was suspended because of snow on Tuesday, play got underway early and continued until after nine o’clock on Wednesday. The top four teams in the two Section A pools will play in the quarter-finals on Thursday, with the semifinals being played on Friday and the final on Saturday.

Boland's Tamzin Dreyer (behind) and Zandre Kruger from Dr Kenneth Kaunda compete for the ball. Dr Kenneth Kaunda (North West South) beat former netball powerhouse Boland 46-32. Photo: Reg Caldecott / Gallo ImagesDr Kenneth Kaunda (North West South) had mixed fortunes, beating former netball powerhouse Boland 46-32, but losing narrowly (43-41) to Nelson Mandela Bay (Eastern Province) later in the day. With Gauteng North and Gauteng Central likely to clinch the top spots in Pool 1, NMB and Kenneth Kaunda were fighting it out for a better place in the quarterfinals, but NMB coach Reg Sharp believed his team will give any team a good run for their money in the quarters.

“It’s a fairly young team, and they are on a bit of a learning curve,” he said. “It was a bit of a blow when their coach Lana Krige and their captain Zanele Mdodana, were withdrawn because of the SPAR Proteas training camp, but they have come out fighting,” he said. “We hit the top two teams, Gauteng North and Gauteng Central, on the first day, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, because we have a second chance against them in the later rounds. Both were close matches – we lost by four or five goals in each match, and in fact we were closer than the scores suggest,” said Sharp.

In Pool 2, Free State Motheo continued to dominate, with Ekurhuleni likely to end second in the pool after beating Gauteng West 53-33, and Amathole (Border) 54-25. It was a bad day at the office for Amathole, who were beaten 40-25 by Western Province. In their only match of the day, Free State Motheo thumped Gauteng West 75-30.


SPAR National Netball Championships Day 3 Results, at the University of Johannesburg in Auckland Park:
A Section:
Ekurhuleni 53-33 Gauteng West
Dr Kenneth 46-32 Boland Bizhub
Gauteng North 50-35 Gauteng Central
Ekurhuleni 54-25 Amathole
Nelson Mandela Bay 43-41 Dr Kenneth Kaunda
Gauteng North 67-47 Frances Baard
Western Province 40-25 Amathole
Freestate Motheo 75-30 Gauteng West
B Section:
Vhembe 44-24 Joe Qgabi
Western Province 59-05 Lejweleputswa
SWD 30-20 Gert Sibande
Gauteng North 42-35 Boland
Bafokeng 39-28 Cacadu
Nelson Mandela Bay 48-25 Buffalo City
Cacadu 36-33 SWD; Bafokeng 77-8 Lejweleputswa
Gert Sibande 37-24 Vhembe
Western Province 87-14 Joe Qgabi
Bojanala 38-35 Gauteng North
Nelson Mandela Bay 44-31 West Coast
Boland 54-34 Zululand
Umgungundlovu 61-38 Buffalo City
Jow Qgabi 36-26 Lejweleputswa
Gert Sibande 55-26 Cacadu
Umgungundlovu 58-38 Nelson Mandela Bay
Buffalo City 41-37 Zululand
Boland Bizhub 52-44 Bojanala
C Section:
Nkangala 48-20 Sisonke
Uthukela 52-23 Ugu
SANDF 56-15 Dr Ruth Mompati
Uthungulu 52-22 Nkangala
Western Province 25-20 Sekhukhune
Waterberg 48-44 Ilembe
SANDF 51-31 Gauteng Vaal
Central Boland 41-33 Ehlanzeni
Nkangala 40-20 Umzinyathi
Umkhanyakude 77-44 Chris Hani
Alfred Nzo 40-29 DCS
NM Molema 37-21 Dr Ruth Mompati
Ethkwini 48-27 OR Tambo
Central Boland 65-23 Uthukela
Ilembe 56-21 Alfred Nzo
Gauteng Vaal 49-29 NM Molema
Gauteng Central 45-29 Fezile Dabi
A Section Results on Day 2 of the SPAR National Netball Championships, at the University of Johannesburg in Auckland Park (Click here for all Day 2 results):
A Section:
Gauteng Central 40-36 Dr. Kenneth Kaunda
FS Motheo Fundco 59-59 Ekurhuleni
Gauteng North 58-42 Boland Bizhub
Nelson Mandela Bay 61-45 Frances Baard
Amathole 52-34 Gauteng West
Free State Motheo Fundco 47-33 Western Province
A Section Results on Day 1 of the SPAR National Netball Championships, at the University of Johannesburg, Auckland Park (Click here for all Day 1 results):
A Section:
Boland Bizhub 51-42 Frances Baard
Western Province 56-30 Gauteng West
Gauteng North 42-37 Dr. Kenneth Kaunda
Gauteng Central 45-41 Nelson Mandela Bay
Free State Motheo Fundo 53-28 Amathole
Western Province 42-36 Ekurhuleni
Dr. Kenneth Kaunda 63-23 Frances Baard
Gauteng Central 55-44 Boland Bizhub
Gauteng North 51-45 Nelson Mandela Bay