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Nations Cup 16 Match Report: Ireland Vs Botswana

Day 4 started with a highly contested match between Ireland and Botswana with the teams fighting till the very end, and Botswana eventually winning the match with a score of 34 – 27.

Within 30 seconds of the first quarter, Binang (GS) of Botswana scored the first goal of the match. Swiftly followed suit was a score by Ireland’s Tuataga (GS). Even with Botswana style of play – quick passes and constant movement around court, Ireland manages to catch up with more scoring opportunities. Ireland’s goal shooter manages to even out the score of 7-7 by the end of the first quarter – making the 800th goal by team Ireland since their first participation in the Cup.

After a series of many failed attempts by both sides, Tuataga of Ireland manages to score three goals in a row for Ireland in the second quarter. With just five minutes left to the end of the first half, Botswana sends in their captain, Bagidi, who manages to support the team into scoring enough goals to even out the score to 5 – 5. Ireland relentlessly puts up a strong defence and attack to take the lead. With both teams having multiple opportunities to score, the first half ends with a score of 14 -14.

The third quarter started off tough as both teams returned determined to get the better half. Botswana switched back to their African style of play and manages to edge the earlier part of the quarter. Even with Ireland’s strong defence that limited Botswana’s scoring opportunities, the latter continues to be agile and scores multiple goals in a row. Botswana takes the lead with a score of 25 – 20.

Ireland remains determined in the last quarter with a strong defence, hoping to catch up with their opponents. This quarter is similar to the first half of the match with both teams chasing each other’s scoring points. Ireland’s Duffy manages to sneak a score one second to the end of the match. Despite Ireland’s hope of making a comeback from yesterday’s match, the game ends with a score of 34 – 27, in favour of Botswana.

Throughout the game, players from both teams displayed their strength of adjusting to their opponent’s style of play.

Genevieve Slater, Team Ireland’s vice-captain 
“We really came into this game after a tough match yesterday against Zambia. We had a brilliant first half in this match but the second half was almost a completely different game for us. We had to make sure that we were committed to the full four quarters as opposed to just a half and I think we really did that. It was even at half time and we were down by 7 at the end, but we really showed some guts and forged there. We’re a new bunch of girls with two new, big injuries yesterday which didn’t help. But credit to our squad, we’re strong and we’ve got that depth. We just supported and backed each other up, so it was good effort today.”

Tumisang Bagidi, Team Botswana’s captain
“We didn’t start really well, but I wouldn’t say we were very bad because we were on par with them. But when the led by a margin of 3 points, we managed to cover and even out the game. As for how we managed to keep the lead at the end of the game, we went back to our basics. The African way of playing – easy, landing, passing to one another, varying between short and long passes and making sure that every ball that goes to the shooter is a score. Luckily Ireland had a number of mistakes which we capitalized on.”

HIGHLIGHTS

• The first half of the match was tied at 14 -14
• Hilda Binang was the top scorer of the match with a scoring percentage of 96%
• The largest score difference was only 5 points

MATCH STATISTICS

 IrelandBotswana
Score3427
Total Attempts3949
Goal Percentage87%55%