The Malawi Queens have lost 62-63 to Jamaica in a tightly contested match at the Allphones Arena at the ongoing World Netball Cup in Sydney, Australia.
From a sloppy start in the first quarter that saw them trail 13-19, the Queens came back in the second quarter with more tactics, but still Jamaica led 16-19.
In the third quarter, the Queens came back strong and more tactical, they were a beauty to watch and were rewarded with a 17-10 lead.
The final quarter was crucial, Jamaica knew they were about to lose, and they did everything to deny the Queens more possession. In this quarter, Queens led 16-15, ending the match 62-63 in favour of the Sunshine Girls.
Sindi Simtowe scored 23 baskets, and she didn’t miss any chance, while New Zealand based shooter Mwawi Kumwenda netted 39 baskets, from 43 chances.
The loss ended the Queens’ dream of breaking into top four of World netball, and will now compete for position five at the tournament.
They will meet continental rivals, South Africa’s Spar Proteas who lost to England. They will be fighting for position five.
Jamaica’s Sunshine Girls are ranked fourth in the World, two places above the Queens.
The Malawi team has never beaten Jamaica, and the last time the two teams met at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games in Scotland, Jamaica outclassed the Queens with 81-50 baskets.
But the one basket margin this morning shows the Queens’ determination for success.
The Queens beat Spar Proteas, Singapore and Sri Lanka in the early stages of the competition, before seeing off Uganda.
However, they lost 57-49 to World number two New Zealand before meeting Jamaica.
Despite failing to break into top four, the Queens can still afford a smile after scoring a century goals against Sri Lanka, the first of its kind in 12 years.