LIVERPOOL – South Africa ended an excellent Netball World Cup in Liverpool on a disappointing note on Sunday, going down to England 58-42 in the bronze medal play-off at the M&S Bank Arena.
Coach Norma Plummer and captain Bongiwe Msomi were sad after the final match, but strong performances during the tournament augur well for the team's future with most of the players showing they can compete competitively against world-class opposition.
Plummer, who is now retiring after a long stint with the team, said: “It would be an understatement to say that I am not sad with the fact that we didn’t beat England. However at the same time I am super proud of the girls, they gave it their all on the court.
"Granted we made a few mistakes, second-guessed ourselves at times, but we played better. I can never fault anyone here. England came out on top and for that we congratulate them. I am proud of this team. I am proud of the journey travelled with all of them and the players that they have become over time.
"I think we have done better in this World Cup as a team, finishing in the top-four is not a thing to take lightly and I am telling them now to walk out there with their heads held up high, they have done the unthinkable and put their name in the history books," said Plummer.
Come on South Africa 🇿🇦 let's show coach Norma and Nicole our gratitude! Let's give them some LOVE! ❤️ Thank You coaches for helping us become a force in international netball again.— Netball South Africa (@Netball_SA) July 22, 2019
📸 Reg Caldecott pic.twitter.com/YPlQRXMWEM
SA captain Bongiwe Msomi was also sad they could not win a medal.
“We had hoped and planned for a bronze medal, but it was a tough game and always tricky to face the same team twice in the space of three days.
"I think England put up a great fight, they came at us very strongly and made it count when it mattered the most. But as a team we have grown. When you look at where we started to where we are today, I think we have players who have really improved.
"On behalf of the team we wish Ma (coach Norma) everything of the best - we would like to keep her forever though.”
African News Agency (ANA)