The Australian Diamonds have made a winning start to
their 2012 Netball Quad-Series campaign with a 64 – 40 victory over England at
the Adelaide Entertainment Centre on Sunday.
The Diamonds put a hesitant start behind them with a dominant third quarter,
outscoring the visitors by nine goals to record a first up win in the
four-nations tournament that also features New Zealand and South Africa.
Diamonds coach Lisa Alexander opted for youth in attack with WAIS scholarship
holder Caitlin Bassett and Erin Bell starting in the attacking circle while
sticking with experience at the back end with Rebecca Bulley and Bianca
Chatfield at goal defence and keeper respectively.
Both sides made a nervous start as England capitalised on a Diamonds turnover
in the opening possession to trouble the scorers twice within a minute but the
Australians wasted no time striking back.
The visitors were flawless under the post until captain Pamela Cookey was
substituted midway through the first quarter, requiring medical attention after
suffering a heavy knock with Chatfield in circle.
With their leader on the sideline, the Diamonds forced four consecutive
turnovers late in the first quarter to snare a 14-12 lead at quarter-time.
England upped the pressure through the mid-court early in the second quarter to
force turnovers from Madison Browne and Natalie von Bertouch as they overcame
the two-goal quarter time deficit before both sides settled in attack in the
The Diamonds regained their timing and ascendency through the mid-court as they
dominated the final few minutes of the second quarter to finish with a run of
six un-answered goals to lead 27-22 at half-time.
Changes at the main break saw former NSW Swifts team mates Catherine Cox and
Susan Pratley reunite in the goal circle, along with Mo’onia Gerrard at wing
defence, with immediate effort as the Diamonds surged ahead to a 12-goal lead
in the third quarter.
The Australians maintained their momentum in the third and fourth quarters to
outscore England 37-18 after half-time to put the game beyond doubt to record
their second highest score against England in a decade.
Bianca Chatfield was named MVP.
- Netball Australia