FS team retains title

2015-06-10 06:01
CHAMPIONS: The Free State Crinums celebrate winning the Brutal Fruit Netball Premier League after beating the Gauteng Jaguars at the University of Pretoria Sports Complex on Sunday (07/06). 

Photo: 
Christiaan Kotze/Saspa

CHAMPIONS: The Free State Crinums celebrate winning the Brutal Fruit Netball Premier League after beating the Gauteng Jaguars at the University of Pretoria Sports Complex on Sunday (07/06). Photo: Christiaan Kotze/Saspa

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THE Free State Crinums coach, Burta de Kock, said she was happy and proud of her players after they had successfully defended their Brutal Fruit Netball Premier League title.

The Crinums defeated the Gauteng Jaguars 61-59 in extra time after the final had ended 48-all after regulation time in Pretoria on Sunday (07/06).

For their efforts, the Bloemfontein side received the trophy and a cheque of R250 000.

Ironically, the Crinums played against the Jaguars in the final of this tournament last year and they won the match by 40-36 in extra time.

“It was important to successfully defend our title. And I’m glad we did just that. I’m happy and proud for the girls.

“They really played well and sticked to our game plan,” De Kock told Express.

“We should have won the match after the fourth quarter as we were leading by two points with two minutes left on the clock. But we allowed the Jaguars to come back and force the match into extra time.

“I’m happy we won the match eventually,” she said.

The Gauteng side started the match like a house on fire and they deservedly led by 13-10 after the first quarter, but the Crinums came back stronger in the second quarter and it was all square at half-time, 24-all.

The Jaguars reclaimed their lead in the third quarter which ended 36-35 in their favour.

The pulsating final, which was played in front of a capacity crowd, failed to produce the winner after an hour of entertaining netball as the two teams were tied at 48-48 after full-time.

In extra time, the Jaguars led by 56-52 and they looked certain to win the match, but De Kock’s girls had other ideas as they showed great character to win the final by 61-59.

“We never stopped believing in ourselves. We knew we had players with great character, the players who have the pedigree to bounce back,” said Burta.

“Our slogan for this tournament has been Grit and Passion, and we showed that on Sunday.

“It was a real team effort, and the girls showed superb big match temperament. They just never gave up,” she said

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