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Proteas players during the game against Trinidad and Tobago in Cape Town. Picture: ASHLEY VLOTMAN
Proteas players during the game against Trinidad and Tobago in Cape Town. Picture: ASHLEY VLOTMAN

SA kept their faint hopes of a Netball World Cup semifinal alive with a dominant 69-28 win over  Trinidad and Tobago at the Cape Town International Convention Centre on Monday. 

The Netball Proteas still have a chance of progressing to the semifinals but their fate is not entirely in their own hands  after losing to Jamaica on Sunday. 

The Proteas started the second preliminaries stage of this complicated format disadvantaged because losing to Jamaica means they must beat New Zealand and Uganda. 

At the same time, they will be hoping Jamaica and New Zealand get unfavourable results at this second preliminaries stage for them to sneak into the semis as one of the top two finishers in Group G. 

New Zealand and Jamaica started the second preliminaries stage with comprehensive victories over Wales and Malawi and they now occupy the top two positions which comes with progression to the semis. 

SA have a day off on Tuesday and return to action on Wednesday to take on defending champions New Zealand and defeat in that match will almost effectively rule them out of the running for the semifinals. 

In the absence of injured Lenize Potgieter, who has been ruled out of the tournament, Proteas coach Norma Plummer started with goal shooter Ine-Marí Venter. 

Plummer also made some rotational changes with influential defender Phumza Maweni and centre Khanyisa Chawane dropping to the bench.

Venter took the responsibility with a return of 13 goals in the first 15 minutes where she was supported by goal attacker Nichole Taljaard. 

It was not an overly convincing first quarter by the Proteas as they lacked the fluidity that allowed Trinidad and Tobago to keep up with them and they went to the short break with a six-point lead. 

The second quarter started slowly but the Proteas recovered midway to dominate and ultimately outscore Trinidad and Tobago by 12 points. 

A similar pattern followed after half time break as the Proteas continued to keep the scoreboard ticking and they enjoyed a significant lead of 30 points after three quarters. 

SA’s dominance was also as a result of some of the changes by Plummer as Chawane, Elmeré van der Berg and Jeante Strydom came on freshen things up. 

One of the highlights of the match was the World Cup debut of goal attacker Owethu Ngubane who replaced Taljaard in the closing stages as SA closed the game with a comprehensive victory. 

It was a dominant win over this Trinidad and Tobago side but a tougher assignment awaits in the form of tournament favourites Silver Ferns on Wednesday and the highly competitive Uganda on Thursday. 

Monday’s Results 

Australia 76-37 Scotland, Zimbabwe 45-62 Barbados, Wales 34-83 New Zealand, Fiji 48-62 Malawi, Jamaica 61-49 Uganda, Sri Lanka 52-55 Singapore, SA 69-28 Trinidad and Tobago, Tonga 46-72 England 

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