Netball World Cup: Courageous She Cranes Fall To New Zealand

Saturday, July 29
•New Zealand 54-44 Uganda

Sunday, July 30
•Uganda Vs Trinidad & Tobago, 5pm

She Cranes put up a commendable fight but lost to defending champions New Zealand in their second game at the 2023 Netball World Cup.

The Ugandan side, into the game off the back of a 79-37 win over Singapore in their Friday opener, were well aware of how huge a challenge New Zealand would pose.

But the She Cranes played courageously in a game New Zealand slowly by slowly built their lead.

Mary Nuba, who started in goal-shooting position ahead of Haniisha Muhameed, scored a game high 30 goals.

Shadiah Nassanga added 10 after replacing Captain Irene Eyalu at halftime who struggled to get things going in early exchanges.

The She Cranes missed 13 goal-attempts, including 8 from Nuba, while the Silver Ferns fluffed just 4, and that proved to be the big difference.

There were a couple of turnovers at both ends especially in the first stanza, but overall it was an entertaining encounter until the final whistle as Uganda kept New Zealand at the edge of their seats.

The 10-goal loss is another manifest of how greatly the She Cranes have closed the gap at the top, after having lost 40-53 to the side last year in the Commonwealth Games.

But this is the sixth straight loss for Uganda against New Zealand in recent memory and the Silver Ferns have reached the second round with a game to spare with that win over She Cranes.

Uganda were edged by two goals in each of the first three quarters before running out of steam in the last one as New Zealand weathered through the storm.

Grace Nweke gave Uganda’s Goal-Keeper Stella Nanfuka a torrid time, to score first half 15 goals.

Mary Nuba was tightly marked at the other end by Kelly Jurry and Phoenix Karaka to limit Uganda’s threat.

Sisters Maggie Baagala and Norah Lunkuse combined for 23 assists as Uganda asked New Zealand plenty of questions.

The She Cranes will have to beat Trinidad and Tobago on Sunday to confirm her place in the next round.

How She Cranes Started – Mary Nuba (GS), Irene Eyalu (GA), Norah Lunkuse (WA), Maggie Baagala (C), Shaffie Nalwanja (WD), Christine Nakitto (GD), Stella Nanfuka (GK)

Watch the She Cranes documentary:



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