Posted on

SVG Under-23 Netballers fail to regain sub regional title

SVG Under-23 Netballers fail to regain sub regional title


St. Vincent and the Grenadines’ bid to regain the ECCB OECS Under-23 Netball Championships was stopped{{more}} as St. Kitts offloaded a 52-43 whipping on the host team.

After a hard fought, come from behind, draw on Tuesday evening against eventual champions, Grenada, the Vincentians needed to beat St. Kitts to lift the title for the thirteenth time, but choked last Wednesday evening at the Arnos Vale Sports Complex.

St. Kitts sped away to a 16-7 lead in the first quarter, and extended that ascendancy to 28-18 at the end of the second.

The Kittians, buoyed by support from the other five competing teams, maintained their dominance, as the third quarter ended 38-28, in their favour.

The 2009 champions finished off the host 52-43, and handed Grenada the 2010 title.

Grenada finished unbeaten, with five wins and a 53-53 tie against the Vincentians. St. Kitts placed second, with five wins and one loss.

Grenada, on route to the title, beat Dominica, 56-40, Antigua and Barbuda 57-42, Nevis 89-20, and got the better of St. Kitts 53-48 and displaced St. Lucia 56-33.

The Vincentians had outscored Antigua and Barbuda 53-25, St. Lucia 49-28, Dominica 60-20, and Nevis 71-12.

Coach of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines team, Nichole Sandy-Stevenson, who prior to the championships, had boldly predicted a win for her team, told SEARCLIGHT minutes after her charges’ defeat by St. Kitts: “I am sad. I have no words to describe my feelings.”

Reflecting on her team’s final match last Wednesday evening, Sandy- Stevenson said,” I really thought we had this one in the bag, but we did not mark as well as we should in the centre court.”

Sandy-Stevenson said that the loss of two of their defenders during the championships because of injury obstructed their team balance and strategy.

Meanwhile, winning Coach, Grenadian Barbara Simpson, told SEARCHLIGHT, “I am elated, but not surprised”.

“We came here very positive, played physical and hard and with very accurate shooting, we did it”, Simpson stated.
Simpson said that her team was wary of the Vincentians, because of the anticipated home support, and with the knowledge, according to her, that they were “a good team”, despite St. Kitts being the defending champions.

Trailing the top three, St. Lucia placed fourth, followed by Dominica in fifth position, with Antigua and Barbuda, sixth, and Nevis, seventh.

This was the first time that St. Vincent and the Grenadines did not win the championship on home soil. This country has hosted the tournament on four occasions.