She Cranes Defeat Singapore At Netball World Cup

Uganda’s National Netball team, the She Cranes secured its first victory over Singapore in the opening game of the ongoing Netball World Cup in South Africa.

The She Cranes which is making its fourth World Cup appearance, outsmarted Singaporeans in all quarters and finally ended the game with an impressive 79-37 scoresheet down at the International Conventional Centre in Cape Town, South Africa.

In a surprising tactical move, She Cranes head coach, Fred Mugerwa opted to rest team captain Irene Eyaru and towering goal shooter Mary Nuba. He instead gave Shadia Nassanga and Hanisha Muhammed the opportunity to shine in the goal-attacking and shooting positions, respectively. The decision paid off splendidly as the substitutes rose to the occasion, leaving the coach gratified with their performance.

The She Cranes, which commanded a nervy start, dominated from the outset, ending the first quarter with a commanding 22-09 lead. Undeterred by their initial advantage, the Ugandan team held their ground, skillfully neutralizing their opponents’ physicality and intensifying the game’s pace.

These tactical maneuvers enabled the Ugandan girls to extend their lead to 42-18 by the end of the second quarter. Margaret Baagala was named player of the match after an industrious performance that saw her start at Centre before she was switched to Wing Attack in the second half.

After the break, Mugerwa made a couple of changes and introduced Nuba and Eyaru for Muhammed and Nassanga respectively, Lillian Achola also came on for Lunkuse while Farida Kadondi also replaced Nanfuka.

The She Cranes continued pushing and ended the third quarter leading 62-29, before adding 17 in the last quarter to command a 79-37 win. Muhammed contributed the most goals 31 of her 35 attempts while Margaret Baagala who started at Centre before she was switched to Wing Attack in the second half, was named player of the match.

Buoyed by their triumph over Singapore, Uganda’s next challenge will be against World Champions New Zealand, who secured a convincing 76-27 win against Trinidad and Tobago in their opening game. Uganda is in Group D alongside defending champions New Zealand, Singapore, Trinidad and Tobago.

Speaking to journalists after the game, coach Fred Mugerwa said that their primary target is reaching the knockout round and a win in their opening game will boost their ambitions.

Hanisha Muhammad who contributed the most gals for Uganda said that the win in the first game is important because it determines how they perform in the overall tournament.

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