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Premier netball semifinals promise thrilling matchups

Wednesday 26 June 2024 | Written by Solomone Taukei | Published in Rugby league, Sports

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Premier netball semifinals promise thrilling matchups
Takuvaine’s goal defence Cathy Elder collected numerous intercepts, keeping her team in contention throughout the match. Picture: CB SPORTS OFFICIAL/24062511

Rarotonga’s netball season is reaching its climax as the extended premier division competition narrows down to the top four teams.

Last week’s knockout matches at the Ngatangiia courts provided plenty of excitement, with intense competition and determined plays setting the stage for the upcoming semifinals.

In one of the fiercest battles of the weekly competition, Tupapa clashed with Takuvaine.

The game was heated from start to finish, with Tupapa’s defenders putting on a formidable display. They effectively shut down Takuvaine’s strong offensive plays, particularly focusing on holding shooter Lily Mataitini, who has been averaging an impressive 30 goals per game.

Despite Takuvaine’s efforts, including their swift transitions and hard work to bring the ball to their towering shooter, they struggled against Tupapa’s solid defence.  

Takuvaine’s goal defence Cathy Elder collected numerous intercepts, keeping her team in contention throughout the match.

However, the resilience of the Tupapa side proved to be the deciding factor.

Still recovering from previous tough encounters, Tupapa entered the game with a determination to win. This drive was evident in their play, particularly in the efficiency of their circle shooters, Tashi Kopu and Mere-Jean Piri.

Their strong movement and shooting accuracy left little room for Takuvaine to mount a comeback.

In the end, Tupapa secured a hard-fought victory with a close scoreline of 44-36, earning their place in the semifinals.

Meanwhile, on the other court, Arorangi delivered a stunning performance, overwhelming the Ngatangiia netters with their biggest margin win of the season, finishing at 85-24.

Despite facing player unavailability, the Ngatangiia team put up a valiant effort in their final match against the Arorangi Flames. However, Arorangi’s defenders were relentless, averaging seven intercepts per quarter, and their shooters were on target throughout the game, making it an uphill battle for Ngatangiia.

In an exciting semi-final round this week, Tupapa is set to face off against their season rivals, the Avatiu Dragonflies. This matchup is particularly intriguing as Avatiu maintain an unbeaten winning record against Tupapa this season.

However, the semifinals bring a different level of intensity and unpredictability, meaning anything can happen. Tupapa will need to bring their A-game to overcome their past defeats and secure a spot in the final.

On the other side, the Arorangi Flames will take on the Titikaveka Pearls. Titikaveka has been a dominant force throughout the season, showcasing their strength and consistency.

However, Arorangi has shown significant progress during the second round of the tournament. Their recent performances indicate a team that is hungry to finish on top and has the capability to challenge Titikaveka’s dominance.