The Wright Insight: Stage one wrap up

1 month ago

The Wright Insight has proven to be correct as one sided games dominated stage one of the 2019 Netball World Cup.

Tash Lewis and Rob Wright

Collingwood Magpies netball’s official 2019 Netball World Cup (NWC) correspondent, A.K.A the Magpies’ head coach, Rob Wright, reflects on the first three days of the competition and provides new insights and predictions for the next seven days.

Stage one:

Following the first three days of match-play I’ve already observed a lot. Looking ahead with what to expect for day four, all I can say is double disaster.

The weather is predicted to be 23 degrees – 20 degrees too hot I’d say. I’d rather the three.

Secondly, shortly after my arrival at the M&S Bank Arena I discovered it was a Pepsi venue. My daily 16 coke can consumption has been substantially deprived. In my pursuit of becoming a Coca Cola ambassador I can’t be seen drinking the alternative.

Moving right along…

Results

In the preview piece I discussed one sided games and it very much turned out that way.

  • Out of 24 games played over the weekend only three games had a margin under 10 points. One of those was the massive result of South Africa defeating Jamaica by three (55 – 52)
  • Just under 59% of games were decided by 30 or more.
  • 29% of games had a margin of 50 or more.
  • A real highlight is the effort we’ve seen with Zimbabwe. This is their first world cup – despite the result they did a great job against Australia and beat world no. 8 Northern Ireland today to put them through to the next phase. At this stage they’re looking to finish within the top 12.

Two bold statements I’m putting out there – I believe England’s Layla Guscoth rupturing her Achilles on day two during the Roses’ 70-34 win over Scotland has put England’s chances at the gold medal in real jeopardy. I’m predicting that England will no longer make the final.

Today’s games to watch – Jamaica v England – the outcome of this game is to make the medal round. Jamaica are effectively out bar some miracle. Without a win they have to rely on South Africa to lose against Uganda or Scotland.

South Africa are two points in front and hold a large percentage over Jamaica. My second prediction is for Jamaica not to make the top four. This would be a real disaster for Jamaican netball – they currently rank no. 2 in the world but are likely to be bumper out unless they defeat England.

Back to the Aussies – how our Diamonds are tracking

My thoughts after day one – I believe Australia’s form looked to be the slickest of all teams. All teams made changes in the preliminary three days of play but when Australia made changes they lost nothing. All the other teams didn’t look as efficient and slick as Australia.

Day two – all the top teams played well but New Zealand took the cake. Their thorough court defence was incredible and work on their front end was seamless. They continuously made changes during play and looked to improve. New Zealand is sure looking to build across the tournament. In terms of Australia, I would expect Lisa Alexander wouldn’t have been overly thrilled with our performance against Zimbabwe – we didn’t look great on day two.

All our three Collingwood players have been playing extremely well. Both April and Kelsey did a terrific job on day three. Geva has displayed a strong, consistent form over the three days. I’m really happy with how they are all travelling.

Overall, today was a challenging day of match-play. All the top teams won by 50 points plus. All the top teams looked good but it’s still hard to tell who remains in top rankings. South Africa v Jamaica today will be a big decider.

Updated prediction of the final

Another bold prediction - Australia v New Zealand to compete in the Grand Final.

Signing out.

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