Cayman Islands netball recorded two historic victories in Scotland.
The national Under-21 netball team defeated Ireland, 62-26, and Israel, 71-26, during the round robin consolation playoffs at the 2013 World Youth Netball Championships. The victories are the first in Cayman’s history as the local girls are making their debut in the competition.
Gillian Lee serves as national coach and Cayman’s technical director for netball. The Australian said the squad earned those victories.
“It was well deserved by the girls,” Lee said. “They’ve worked hard all week. Despite the scores not showing it, they’ve had a tough gig against Jamaica and Wales, so I was really pleased that they could then start putting their game together at their standard. Now it’s about being disciplined, keeping alert in the game and not switching off.”
Against Ireland on Wednesday, Cayman won the first quarter 14-7 before going into halftime with an 18-goal lead. The girls would pour it on in the second half. Cayman sizzled on offense behind attacking players Aaliyah Webb and Rosemarie Wilson. Against Israel on Thursday, Cayman were steady and on point through all four quarters. The girls launched their assault in the first quarter, with seven straight goals as part of a 20-for-21 shooting spree.
Cayman lost its first four games during group play to finish last in Pool C. The losses were lopsided: 73-21 to host country Scotland, 98-2 to Jamaica, 94-10 to Wales and 74-24 to Samoa. The competition wraps up with the closing ceremony on Saturday, Aug. 31.
Cayman plays Malta on Friday, Aug. 30, at Glasgow’s £113 million Emirates Arena to decide the teams that will finish 17th and 18th out of 20 squads. Aside from Webb and Wilson, the other local girls in action are: Alexis Carias, Kimberly David, Terry-Ann Hunter, Noviann McLean, Brittany Mobley (vice-captain), Olivia Samuels, Charlotte Shepheard, Roxanne Walton, Sheynae Watson and Martika Williams (captain).
Aside from Lee, the girls are supported by assistant coaches Nicola Williams and Lyneth Monteith, team managers Andrea Singh and Adena Miller and delegates Lucille Seymour and Norma Ferryman.
Martika Williams, 20, said after the Ireland victory the focus was on finishing strong.
“Right now, yeah, we’re playing good but we’re going to go against Malta, probably one of the strongest sides here,” Williams said.
“We’ll only defeat them by playing very hard against them. The girls are high-spirited, they’re ready to go, ready to fight and ready to get that 17th position.”