Singapore were given a lesson in Calypso as the Trinidad and Tobago netballers played all over them yesterday in the Netball World Cup in Sydney, Australia. On their return to the Allphones Arena, the Calypso Girls recorded their highest goal total so far in this year's competition as they strolled unchallenged to a 75-32 victory against Singapore.
T&T wasted no time in establishing the status quo, as they raced to a 21-8 lead after the end of the first quarter. Despite being a crowd favourite down under, the Calypso Girls were playing in front of a half-empty arena, as they were playing in the early match, and the big draw; Australia and South Africa were on the cards later.
That didn't deter T&T, who were determined to keep the wins going. Samantha Wallace was at it again as her conversion rate continued to impress onlookers; she would go on to score 27 goals from 31 attempts. During the contest, she outmatched her opponents physically, which was a recurring theme during the match.
T&T made wholesale changes at the start of the second half, Kalifa McCollin, who started the second half at goal attack, had an impressive third quarter shooting 15/15, and missing just one goal overall for the match T&T continued to dominate all areas of the court. The score was 58-24 after the third quarter.
The rest of the match played out to the same script, as Kielle Connelly, Daystar Swift and Onella Jack marshalled an uncompromising defence throughout which pressed on the Singaporeans throughout the entire match.
In attack, T&T showed their superior athleticism, physicality and flair commonly associated with Caribbean teams. Wallace, who features for UTT in the Courts All Sectors Netball League led the scoring for T&T with 27—she also top scored in all the previous matches.
McColling scored a massive 26 goals of her own, while skipper Joelisa Cooper also put in a strong shift with 14 goals. Veteran centre Rhonda John-Davis proved once again to be the backbone, as she assisted 24 of the goals on the day.
Goal-attack McCollin acknowledged that their next match would be a tougher encounter.
“I think that Samoa is a little bit more physical than the other team so from the start we need to be physical with them and get the game going," she said.
Rhonda John-Davis, a veteran of four previous Netball World Championships and over 150 appearances for T&T, and a leader in her own right in this World Cup campaign so far, echoed the sentiments for her teammates to be cautious.
“Last time we played Samoa, we won by one… it’s good to know we will be meeting them again and we can measure ourselves for the future," she said.
The win means T&T need to beat Samoa in their last encounter of the second eight group to give them a favourable draw in the play-off. The Samoans also defeated Zambia (55-53) and Singapore (46-39), and would be hoping for an upset win today. T&T were scheduled on the court early-morning (6.20am T&T time).