Friday, July 28
•New Zealand 76-27 Trinidad & Tobago
•Tonga 56-51 Fiji
•Australia 86-30 Zimbabwe
•Uganda 79-37 Singapore
•Jamaica 105-25 Sri Lanka
•South Africa 61-50 Wales
•England 90-29 Barbados
•Malawi 55-49 Scotland
Saturday, July 29
•New Zealand Vs Uganda, 10am
•Zimbabwe Vs Fiji
•Australia Vs Tonga
•Jamaica Vs Wales
•Scotland Vs Barbados
•South Africa Vs Sri Lanka
•England Vs Malawi
•Trinidad & Tobago Vs Singapore
Uganda’s National Netball team, the She Cranes, will return to action against New Zealand on Saturday morning in their second game at the ongoing 2023 Netball World Cup in South Africa.
Uganda got their campaign off to a good start thanks to a deserved and expected 79-37 victory over Singapore in Cape Town on Friday.
But in New Zealand, Uganda faces the defending champion and also the world number two.
The She Cranes will however remain confident of causing an upset.
Hanisha Muhammad was the team’s leading goal-scorer with 31 goals in the opener, and played a vital role at the back in the second half.
“It has been exciting, and when you get a chance to be on court the expectations from coaches and players are high,” Hanisha said after the game.
“Winning the first game is important as it gives you the clue on how the tournament will shape out.”
The KCCA player, commenting in his versatility, said: “It’s always tough but I am mentally ready, the coach reminded me that I was to play two positions at the tournament so it was just up to me to know that its time to shoot and I had to go there and shoot as much as I can.
“And its down on me as well to go and defend and the interceptions are expected. I was ready for it. The first game was exciting for me and I hope the rest of the games are like that as well.”
On facing New Zealand, she revealed: “New Zealand is a strong team in the group, if we take a win it would be more exciting and it will give us a chance to win the group.
“We need to sleep and wake up on the good side of the bed to win this game.”
And it’s work cut out for Uganda against a New Zealand side that beat them 53-40 on July 30 last year in the Commonwealth games.
Current players in South Africa Hanisha, Margaret Baagala, Mary Nuba, Irene Eyalu, Norah Lunkuse and Shadiah Nassanga were part of the team in Commonwealth.
Against the Silver Ferns, the She Cranes must convert on every possession to have a chance.
And it will not be a surprise if a more clinical and experienced Nuba starts at Goal Shooter position.
Nuba, the only foreign-based player on the team, was used only in the third third quarter.
“Everybody brought on the team is as strong as everyone. We just decided to start with those starting seven. There was nothing like reserving someone for another team,” She Cranes coach Fred Mugerwa commented when asked on his surprising starting team against Singapore that saw Nuba and Captain Irene Eyalu starting from the bench.
“Our target is to go through this stage and every game that comes in we have to win it and see that we go through the next stage.”
New Zealand beat Trinidad & Tobago 76-27, and will be hoping to pick a second win as they look to win their sixth Netball World Cup title.
The attacking duo of Grace Nweke (GS) and Maia Wilson (GA) are expected to start up front for New Zealand.
She Cranes Probable Starting Seven – Mary Nuba (GS), Irene Eyalu (GA), Norah Lunkuse (WA), Maggie Baagala (C), Shaffie Nalwanja (WD), Christine Nakitto (GD), Haniisha Muhammad (GK)
How To Watch – The game will be live on Supersport Variety 3 (DStv) and Select (GOtv).
Watch She Cranes Documentary by KYE Films: