Kukoma Diamonds on Sunday maintained their unbeaten run in the Rainbow Paints Blantyre District Netball League (BDNL) after notching a 42-38 triumph over rivals Tigresses in a close encounter at Blantyre Youth Centre (BYC).
With a game remaining to wind up their fixtures, they have already retained the ultimate glory of the 10-team league with insurmountable 34 points from 17-straight wins, six points ahead of second-placed Tigresses, who are tied on 28 points with third-positioned Thunder Queens. So far, Tigresses have completed their fixtures while Thunder will take on Diamonds in their last match.
“We challenged ourselves to win the league title with straight wins and we are happy that our dream is still alive with a single game to play,” said Diamonds assistant coach Noel Mussa.
On the other hand, Tigresses coach Peace Chawinga-Kaluwa attributed their defeat to misplaced passes, especially in mid-court battles.
“I can say we played well and we put our opponents under pressure. The only problem was that we were frequently losing possession,” she said.
On Sunday, Diamonds trailed 9-13 in the first quarter before turning the tables to lead 21-20 in the second segment. They had a two basket advantage at the end of the third quarter that ended 29-27 before settling for a four-basket win at the sound of the final whistle.
Both sides had their star players in excellent form and it was a balanced affair that oozed the excitement of the adoring netball fans. Diamonds had the likes of Alinafe Kamwala, Jessica Mazengera-Sanudi and Carol Mtukule-Ngwira while Tigresses banked on the services of players such as Sindi Simtowe, Laureen Ngwira and Beatrice Mpinganjira.
In another game, Shizaella Queens thrashed Machinjiri Sisters 55-24 to maintain their stand on seventh place.