The Southern Stings achieved a solid 45-35 win over the defending champions, the Free State Crinums, in their Brutal Fruit Netball Premier League match at the Durban University of Technology on Saturday.
The Stings had the edge over the Crinums throughout the match, but it was only in the final quarter that they were able to cut loose and put some distance between their scores. Until then, they were always only two or three goals ahead.
“I’m really proud of the girls,” Stings coach Annelie Lucas said. “We let them put us under pressure a bit but then we came back.
“I am pleased that we seem to have depth in our shooters – Vanes-Mari [Du Toit] had to come off early in the first quarter, but our young shooters really did well.”
After trailing the Eastern Cape Aloes, the North West Flames stormed back to win their match 38-33.
The match was very close but the Aloes had a slight edge until eight minutes before the final whistle, when the Flames levelled the scores on 30-30 and then made certain of victory.
Flames coach Dorette Badenhorst was happy that they had shown character, but she said she had been worried at one point.
Aloes coach Des Neville was stunned by the result.
“We had it and we lost it in the last eight minutes,” she said. “But I think our attack was better than last week.
“Bavu [Matyumza] really stepped up to the plate. Our defence was good but they were hampered by some of the umpiring decisions.”
Goal attack Matyumza was named player of the match.
On Friday, the Aloes beat the Mpumalanga Sunbirds by 38-26, but the Sunbirds played better than the scoreline suggests.
After a stuttering start, when they were able to score only three goals in the first quarter, they came back strongly and outscored the Aloes 9-8 in the second. The Aloes led 21-12 at half time.
The results were:
Friday EC Aloes 38 Sunbirds 26 Fireballs 48 NW Flames 44 Saturday Jaguars 81 Diamonds 19 Baobabs 43 Kingdom Stars 43 NW Flames 38 EC Aloes 33 Southern Stings 45 Crinums 35 Yesterday Stings 60 Kingdom Stars 23 Baobabs 54 Diamonds 20