We tried our best - Fowler
National senior netball team captain Jhaniele Fowler said the Sunshine Girls played well despite their 67-56 defeat to world champions New Zealand in the final of the Vitality Netball Nations Cup at the Copper Box Arena in London yesterday.
Fowler told The Gleaner that the Jamaicans tried their best in the match, but the New Zealanders were better on the day.
“I felt that we could have gone over the line with New Zealand, but things just didn’t work out for us because I think that we made some very crucial errors, and we did not recover from them,” she said. “I think each quarter, we had lulls, where we just lost a little momentum, and New Zealand were able to capitalise on it.”
The Jamaicans, ranked fourth in the world, two places below the New Zealanders, began the match confidently as they trailed their opponents 31-30 at time. However, the Silver Ferns shut down the Sunshine Girls, making it difficult for them to pass the ball to goal shooter Fowler and goal attack Shanice Beckford. The world champions went on to outscore the Jamaicans 19-11 for a 49-41 lead at the end of the period. New Zealand continued their dominance over the Sunshine Girls in the final quarter as they comfortably won the match. It was the New Zealanders’ second win over the Jamaicans in the series after their 71-45 win last Wednesday.
Fowler says that a number of young players gained valuable experience from the competition.
“These performances in the championship show that we are coming back, and we are on the road to where we want to be,” Fowler said. “I think we are in a much better place now because we have the team and coaching staff to push forward to get even better in the future. I think we just need to keep the core of this team together and to get a lot more support, and once we do this, then we can become world beaters,” Fowler noted.