'We had it there!' SA netball boss rues 'silly mistakes' after thrilling England draw

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Norma Plummer
Norma Plummer
Reg Caldecott/Gallo Images

South African netball coach Norma Plummer admitted that silly mistakes were the difference as the Proteas pulled off a dramatic draw against England on Sunday.

The Proteas are involved in a Quad Series against England, New Zealand and Australia at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.

On Sunday, the Proteas pulled off a stunning 46-46 draw against the England Roses to keep their hopes alive in the series.

In the final seconds of the game with England leading 46-45, Karla Pretorius won a vital intercept which Lenize Potgieter converted to register the tournament's first draw. 

Plummer admitted that some bad choices were made as South Africa failed to pull off a win against third-ranked England.

"I'm disappointed we didn't finish that off to get the win. We had it there, but there were a couple of silly mistakes," Plummer told reporters following the match.

"And that's the difference when you play in pressure situations all the time and you haven't been in it for a while. With some new players, there was a bit of nerves and some bad choices."

South Africa lost their opening encounter against New Zealand 61-41.

Plummer went on to urge Netball South Arica to help their side gain more Test experience ahead of July's Netball World Cup set to be hosted in South Africa.

"It's tough going, you don't get too many competitions other than the World Cup where you're you're playing a full game every day at that standard," said the Australian coach.

"We've got to look at how we utilise the team and there's still a few that haven't been on. As I said, we haven't been playing in a national competition like those three top countries.

"They have had that opportunity to play one another and play full-on Test matches. We haven't had that luxury, so we're slightly off the pace on where the fitness levels could be, but that's not the fault of the players.

"It's just the way it's worked out since the Commonwealth Games and Netball South Africa has got to work harder to pull those top countries in for a diamond challenge, so you don't drop off the intensity."

South Africa next face Australia in their final Quad Series group game on Tuesday at the CTICC at 18:00.

Quad fixtures remaining:

Tuesday, 24 January

16:00 - England vs New Zealand

18:00 - South Africa vs Australia

Wednesday, 25 January

16:00 - 3rd & 4th playoffs

18:00 - Final

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