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New Zealand net one hundred


Kiwis send chilling message to Commonwealth netball rivals.

Belinda Colling

New Zealand look good for the final

New Zealand thrashed Canada with a competition-high tally of 101 goals to 17.

It was the most goals recorded in Commonwealth Games netball, surpassing 94 scored against Wales also by New Zealand - in Kuala Lumpur.

New Zealand coach Ruth Aitken introduced star Irene Van Dyk to the action at three quarter-time and she instantly stamped her class on the game with 20/21.

Aitken said afterwards: "It was a good start. Obviously Canada was worn down a little from their game on Friday night, and we sat all day yesterday watching netball, so we were dying to get out there."

The full court defensive pressure of New Zealand, led by centre Julie Seymour and wing defender Anna Veronese, forced Canada to work laterally and backwards.

New Zealand, despite leading 22-4 at quarter-time, did not settle into their characteristic free-flowing rhythm until the second quarter.

Goal shooter Daneka Wipitit and goal attack Donna Loffhagen often opted for the mid to long-range shot and although down on accuracy early - generally made the offensive rebound and converted when closer to the post.

The Canadian goal-circle defenders persisted with double-teaming Wipitit allowing Loffhagen to roam freely in a playmaking role.

Canadian captain, Sharon Butler said: "Basically we've just been learning during these games against England and New Zealand. We're hoping to come out on top against Wales and Sri Lanka."

New Zealand extended the lead to 49-8 at half-time and 72-12 at three quarter-time.

Goal attack Maralyn Hope, who made the most of limited goal-scoring opportunities converted consistently from mid range, was the shining light for Canada.

Info News Service/nt/jp

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