Black Pearls’ winning start

Friday March 22, 2019 Written by Published in Netball
The Rarotonga-based players and team management before leaving for New Zealand. 19032123 The Rarotonga-based players and team management before leaving for New Zealand. 19032123

The Cook Islands netball side won two of its three matches on day one of the Pacific Nations Cup in Auckland, New Zealand on Wednesday.


The Black Pearls defeated Tonga 35-25 in their opening match before going down to Aotearoa Maori Red 29-39. In the final match, the national side defeated Aotearoa Maori Black 39-26.

Against the Tongans, the Black Pearls led 8-5 in the opening quarter and 15-11 at the break.

At the end of the third quarter, the national side was up by 21-17 before putting on an impressive performance in the final quarter to seal the 35-25 win.

Yesterday, the team played Stars of Southern Cross before taking on arch-rivals Samoa.

The Black Pearls are expected to feature in the knockout rounds which will be held today.

The Pacific Nations Cup is hosted by Netball Cook Islands, in conjunction with generous sponsorship from High Wire Charitable Trust and played at the Phyllis Latour Doyle Stadium in Papakura.

The national team comprise 10 Rarotonga-based players and is captained by Natalia Short. Newly-appointed Anna Andrews-Tasola is coaching the team.

The tournament is a non-ranking tournament, featuring teams from the Cook Islands, Samoa, Tonga, Aotearoa Maori, the New Zealand Defence Force, and the Stars of the Southern Cross – featuring our five scholarship recipients of Anania Piri, Daimzel Rongokea, Simone Nicholas, Marei Nicolas, and Tia Henderson.

The national team is made up of skilled and experienced players and features an exciting mix of young netballers, including five new caps.


Cook Islands netball squad – Natalia Short (Titikaveka) – Captain, Marjorie Toru (Avatiu), Alanna Smith (Titikaveka), Antonina Brown (Titikaveka), Alex Iro (NZ), Ashleigh Iro (Titikaveka), Maeva Carr (Titikaveka), Greta Remuera (Arorangi), Norma Pepe (Tupapa), Nicole Marurai (Tupapa), Rangi Tatuava (Takuvaine).

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