The SPAR Proteas and Baby Proteas both achieved a whitewash over Wales in the SPAR Challenge International Netball Series at the Durban International Convention Centre at the weekend.

In Sunday’s final matches, the Proteas beat Wales 64-50, while the Baby Proteas thrashed their Welsh counterparts 88-21.


The Proteas (pictured above with their trophy) did not have everything their own way in the third and final match. Wales, ranked eighth in the world to South Africa’s fifth, had a brilliant first quarter and halfway through the quarter, they went into a 6-9 lead, after overturning two consecutive centre passes. The Proteas also overturned centre passes, but Wales won the quarter 15-14.

The Proteas started to come back in the second quarter, but the lead changed hands several times before South Africa crept ahead to win the quarter 15-13.

However, it was situation normal after halftime, with South Africa moving swiftly to lead by more than 10 goals. Izette Lubbe took a blow to the knee and was replaced by veteran Protea Erin Burger, and goalshooter Lenize Potgieter limped off after twisting her ankle, giving 19-year-old Siggie Burger the opportunity to win her first cap. South Africa won the quarter 16-11 and the final quarter 19-11.

Coach Norma Plummer, who returns to Australia on Monday, said she was very happy with the outcome of the series.

‘We won three-love, so I have to be happy. I’ve had a squad of 14 and I was able to play all 14 players. I took some risks, playing three new caps, but I was able to see what depth there is in South African netball,’ she said.

‘South Africa’s shooting is looking particularly healthy.’

Plummer said she was delighted with the work ethic in the South African team. ‘They also respond very well when you give them feedback between the quarters. Every now and then they’d go into a dip, but those are things that we can continue to work on.’

Wales coach Trish Wilcox was also very happy with her team’s performances. ‘They displayed a style of netball that we’ve been working on for a while,’ she said. ‘We’ve gained such a lot from this series.’

‘That opportunity to keep playing the top teams is invaluable, especially with the Commonwealth events coming up.’

South African goalshooter Lenize Potgieter, who recently returned from playing in the English Super League, said she was very happy to be back with her Protea teammates. ‘From the first training camp, we clicked as a team. It’s all my teammates who make me look good. They get the ball to me and all I have to do is get the ball in the net,’ she said.

‘Netball is very much a team game, and this is a great team to be in.’

Pictured below are the victorious SA Under-21 squad. Pictures by Reg Caldecott
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