Malawi Queens shooter Mwawi Kumwenda on Saturday helped her Australian team Melbourne Vixens to reclaim the Sargeant McKinnis Cup.
She scored 37 baskets as the Vixens secured a gutsy 59-53 win over NSW Swifts at the John Cain Arena. Kiera Austin notched the other 22 baskets as the Suncorp Super Netball leaders registered their fourth successive victory.
The cUP is named after Australia netball greats Vixens’ coach Simone McKinnis and Annie Sargeant.
“The Sargeant MicKinnis Cup is back in Melbourne’s hands, thanks largely to a decisive final term,” a match report on the league’s website www.supernetball.com.au explained.
“Defender Kate Eddy sprang to life with the game on the line to support player of the match Kate Moloney and goalers Mwai Kumwenda (37) and Kiera Austin (22).”
Another match report on Vixens website, www.melbournevixens.com.au stated: “With the game on the line, we put the foot down, nailing the first three goals of the final term. MJ [Mwawi] picked up a couple of crucial rebounds as Eddy impressed with a huge intercept on the centre pass to push our lead out to eight goals.”
In an interview on Sunday, Kumwenda said she was happy to have won the cup.
“The game was very tough on Sunday and I am happy with the performance of the team. We got the cup, giving us the motivation for the remaining league games,” she said.
Currently, Vixens top the eight-team log-table with 36 points from 11 games, four points ahead of second-placed West Coast Fever. Giants and Swifts are third and fourth respectively as they are tied at 20 points.
Meanwhile, United Kingdom-based Towera Vinkhumbo-Nyirenda on Saturday played a pivotal role as her Vitality Netball Superleague side Strathclyde Sirens moved a step up into the top-eight bracket with a 51-40 victory over Celtic Dragons.
Sirens are eighth on the 11-team ladder with 18 points from 18 fixtures, the same points as ninth-placed Wasps, who have played a game more. Top-eight finish is a requirement to qualify for the Fast5 Championship.
Malawi Queens shooter Joyce Mvula’s team Manchester Thunder leads the pack on 54 points from 18-straight wins and automatically qualified for the league’s playoffs.