WINDHOEK, 18 AUG – Namibia’s senior netball team, the Desert Jewels, were on Friday afternoon thrashed 47-86 by Malawi at the African Women’s Netball Championship, which is also the 2019 Netball World Cup qualifiers.
The championship is being hosted by the Netball Association of Zambia in Lusaka from 13 to 18 August 2018.
The Desert Jewels have now lost three of four matches at the championship and won only one thus far.
They lost 44-61 to Zimbabwe on Thursday in their third game of the tournament. Namibia also lost to Uganda (47-72) in their opening match on Tuesday, but won their second match against Kenya (54-34) on Wednesday.
On Friday, Namibia did not stand a chance against the Malawian team that played a high tempo game from the start of the first quarter, which ended 16-21 in their favour.
In the second quarter, Malawi increased their speed and the Namibian team could not handle it, allowing the Malawians to extend their score by 27 points to end the quarter 24-48.
Namibia came back more composed in the third quarter, but the world seventh and Africa’s second ranked team could not be stopped from running havoc on the Namibian defence that made interception mistakes and allowed their opponents to once more extend their lead by 16 points for a 37-64 scoreline.
In the last quarter of the match, the Namibian team only managed to score 10 points, while their opponents added 22 points to their tally for a final score of 47-86.
Six countries – Zambia, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Uganda and Kenya – are battling it out for ranking points as well as a place at next year’s World Cup.
Malawi, who have already qualified for the World Cup, are competing at the event for match fitness, as well as ranking points.
Namibia’s next match in the competition will be against the host and then Botswana on Saturday morning and afternoon.