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Singapore Put Up Fine Performance Against World No. 9 Barbados

Singapore to fight for 15th spot after losing to Barbados

Singapore find themselves fighting for the 15th spot at the Netball World Cup (NWC) Sydney 2015 despite putting in a fine performance after losing to world no 9, Barbados 56-39.

After a disappointing game against Zambia yesterday, Singapore know that they will need to pick themselves up quickly and give a good response in today’s game. The winner of today’s playoff match will head for the 13th/14th Placing match while the loser has to be contended with fighting for the 15th spot at the NWC2015.

It is an uphill task for Singapore who is ranked 15th in the world as they have to overcome world no 9, Barbados who are a hugely experienced team and have eight returning players from the 2011 World Championships. Barbados are also competing in their eighth world cup.

Singapore did not disappoint and come out fighting from the first whistle. Singapore settled early in the game and an improvement was seen through the court. The defenders had a few defections and turnovers and the feeding to the shooters was more precise. The shooters were able to find space within the tight circle and Charmaine Soh shot a high of 92%, missing only one shot from twelve attempts. The first quarter ended 15-12 to Barbados.

Singapore started the 2nd quarter well and had two successive turnovers (by Micky Lin and Premila Hirubalan) early into the quarter but unfortunately, miss passes and bad hands meant that Singapore failed to capitalise on the turnovers. Barbados soon gained confidence in their play and under the post and had five turnovers that they successfully converted, widening the gap to 11 goals and putting the half-time score at 30-19.

Barbados raised the tempo of the play in the 2nd half and the game proceeded at a faster pace. There was increased pressure on Singapore, particularly from midcourt through the way to the shooting circle and the goal difference widened to 17 goals. Olivia Flanagan and Shelby Koh were introduced midway through the quarter after an injury time-out by Ang Shiqi and added fresh legs to Singapore. The changes worked well as Singapore stormed to finish the quarter strongly. The quarter ended 12-11 and put the score at 42-30 to Barbados.

Barbados were no pushovers and came out in the last quarter firing. Nonetheless, Singapore were unrelenting and pushed Barbados to the end. The match ended to 56-39 to Barbados.

Despite losing, Head Coach, Ruth Aitken took heart from the performance today, “They did well. I was really pleased. Obviously we were disappointed yesterday but I thought the fighting spirit was great today.”

On the breakdown during the 2nd quarter, Aitken said, “It’s hard to sustain for all the time. There was definitely different interpretation from the umpire from one end to the other and we were got really hammered defensively in terms of the penalty calls in the 2nd quarter which always makes it hard as they (Barbados) are pretty good shots most of the times. We probably just lost our flow a little bit on attack.”

“I thought the changes came on really well (in the 3rd quarter). I thought Shelby came on really well and I thought Bai (Nurul Baizura) had a much better game today. She was more dominant and then it was good to get the other two shooters in to keep them in touch just in case. Cause’ it’s horrible being a shooter and not play everyday, u lose touch. I thought there was a lot to take out but if I could replay the 2nd quarter that will be nice,“ added Aitken.

Vice Captain, Nurul Baizura said of their performance, “I thought our performance wasn’t too bad. We started off quite well but I thought we drifted a bit especially the attacking part that we didn’t convert and went on a slump. We picked up the game (in the 3rd quarter) but it’s a little bit too late. We had some change of line-ups and I thought the fresh legs were really great when they come on and they were ready to get into the game. I think Pam (Pamela) and Mei (Mei Ling) did very well. We really tried but hard luck. They were within reach but we didn’t capitalised on their mistakes and we had some errors too.”

On whether she is feeling fatigue and the placing match tomorrow, Baizura said, “Tired is an understatement. Everyone is. It is the nature of the game. We are here to play competitive netball. We will go all out (for tomorrow’s game). There’s nothing to lose.”

“It’s all on. It’s back to square one and we have came full circle which is quite not where we wanted to be but it is where it is so we just have to finish well tomorrow,” added Aitken.

Singapore missed out on the chance to improve their 15th position from the last edition and will have to be contended with fighting for the same position tomorrow, 10.50am (8.50am Singapore time) at the Netball Centre, Sydney Olympic Park, Australia. Singapore will play the loser of the playoff match at 5.15pm (3.15pm Singapore time) today between Zambia and Sri Lanka.

In the other playoff matches, former Singapore coach, Kate Carpenter saw her charges, Fiji losing 51-54 to Samoa who came from behind to beat them and Trinidad & Tobago beat Scotland by a sole goal (57-56) in a thrilling match that went into extra time.

New Zealand will match up against England in the first semi-finals while Jamaica will play Australia in the other semi-finals at 12.10pm and 2.20pm (10.10am and 12.20pm Singapore time) respectively.

The gold medal match will be played at 3.20pm (1.20pm Singapore time) on Sunday, 16 August.

 

Starting Line-ups

Singapore

GS CHARMAINE SOH 

GA CHEN HUIFEN (VICE-CAPT) 

WA KIMBERLY LIM 

C NURUL BAIZURA (VICE-CAPT) 

WD PREMILA HIRUBALAN 

GD LIN QINGYI (CAPT) 

GK CHEN LI LI

 

Barbados

GS FAYE SEALY

GA NIKITA PIGGOTT

WA SAMANTHA BROWNE

C LATONIA BLACKMAN (VICE-CAPT)

WD SHANICE ROCK

GD RHE-ANN NILES (CAPT)

GK SHONETTE AZORE-BRUCE

 

Quarter Results (Barbados v Singapore)

1st Quarter 15-12

2nd Quarter 30-19 (15-8)

3rd Quarter 42-30 (12-11)

4th Quarter 56-39 (14-9)

 

Shooting Accuracy

Barbados (Overall: 84%)

Faye Sealy 43/49 (88%)

Nikita Piggott 12/15 (80%)

Sheniqua Thomas 1/3 (33%)

Singapore (Overall: 80%)

Charmaine Soh 28/34 (82%)

Chen Huifen 7/10 (70%)

Yu Mei Ling 1/1 (100%)

Pamela Liew 3/4 (75%)

 

Singapore’s Past Results and Upcoming Fixtures

Preliminary Round (Pool C)

7 August, 11.50am: Singapore vs Sri Lanka (56-43)

8 August, 5.20pm: South Africa vs Singapore (69-21)

9 August, 6.20pm: Malawi vs Singapore (75-31)

Qualification Round (Pool G)

11 August, 10.20am: Samoa vs Singapore (39-46)

12 August, 10.20am: Trinidad & Tobago vs Singapore (75-32)

14 August, 2.20pm: Singapore vs Zambia (36-67)

Playoff Match

15 August, 10.00am: Barbados vs Singapore

15th/16th Placing Match

16 August, 10.50am: Zambia/Sri Lanka vs Singapore