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Semi Final Time in the M1NSL

Sneakers Stingrays advance to the final; Blaze Dolphins and Magic Marlins play for the remaining spot tomorrow

The 17th edition of Singapore’s M1 Netball Super League (NSL) it’s reaching its climax with the semi finals being played today at Toa Payoh Sports Hall.

Semi Final 1: Tiger Sharks 45-52 Blaze Dolphins (HT 22-30)
Q1: 10-15
Q2: 12-15 (22-30)
Q3: 15-7 (37-37)
Q4: 8-15 (45-52)

It’s a tough climb back to the top for the teams who finishes third and fourth in the league. They face-off today, then whoever comes out victorious must maintain the momentum for another on-court battle tomorrow as they aim to make the grand finals next Saturday.

Knowing what was at stake, both sides looked a bit unsettled during the opening quarter and gave away possession all too easily, but at the half time break it was Blaze Dolphins who had the upper hand through sheer grit and determination.

The tables turned dramatically in the third quarter with Tiger Sharks settling into their stride and working well together in defence to bring the score level (37-37).

The final 15 minutes were a tense affair as Blaze took an early lead. Errors crept back into both sides and the Sharks missed several shots on goal that in the end cost them dearly. An exhausted and elated Blaze clung on for a 45-52 victory and are still in contention for the championship.

Blaze Co-Captain Lin Qingyi said, “I don’t know where the team was in the third quarter but I am pleased with the result and how we managed to pull back from that dip in the third. We felt good after the first half but they made some changes and came back strongly and we failed to adapt.

“The big word today would be patience and we need to remind each other of that and play that way again tomorrow.”

Semi Final 2: Magic Marlins 40-44 Sneakers Stingrays (HT 18-24)
Q1: 9-15
Q2: 9-9 (18-24)
Q3: 15-8 (33-32)
Q4: 7-12 (40-44)

Top of the table clash between Magic Marlins and Sneakers Stingrays certainly lived up to expectations with intense end-to-end action from the opening whistle.

The winner would advance straight to next Saturday’s final, the loser would face Blaze tomorrow for a second bite at a finals slot so the tempo was high and so was the hunger for the win.

Defending champions – Sneakers Stingrays – shot out the blocks with goal attack Wong Pei Ying on fire helping to give them a 18-24 half time advantage, much to the pleasure of their vocal supporters.

Marlins battled back in the third and held a one-point lead going into the final quarter but it was the Sneakers Stingrays who found another gear in the fourth for a 40-44 win, as Marlins failed to convert some crucial goals and must return tomorrow to play again.

Carmen Goh, Captain for Sneakers Stingrays said, “Very very happy, out team is progressing to where we want to be at this point in time. Today was a really hard fought game. What motivated us was if we played hard and won today then we wouldn’t have to play again tomorrow.”