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Silver Ferns crush Wales in first Test

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 7/02/2017

Bailey Mes impressed in the shooting end for the Silver Ferns against Wales. © Mark Kolbe/Getty Images Bailey Mes impressed in the shooting end for the Silver Ferns against Wales. New Zealand have continued their rollicking form in the UK, crushing Wales 92-27 in the first of two Tests.

The second-ranked Silver Ferns had too much speed and cohesion for world No.8 Wales, who succumbed 25-2 in the final quarter in Cardiff.

The teams play a second Test 24 hours later which will complete an off-season tour by New Zealand which featured two wins and a loss in the Quad Series.

They opened with a 57-50 loss to Australia in Durban before hitting their stride with substantial defeats of England (61-37) in Liverpool and South Africa (70-39) in London.

There was never any doubt that New Zealand would make it 14 wins out of 14 against the Welsh after they powered 21-9 clear at quarter time.

Coach Janine Southby took the chance to experiment at both ends of the court, including a maiden start for 20-year-old goalkeep Kelly Jury.

Only captain Katrina Grant and goal attack Te Paea Selby-Rickit played a full game.

Selby-Rickit, who gave gun shooter Maria Tutaia the night off, was named player of the match after sinking 40 off her 44 shots.

She linked fluently with goal shoot Bailey Mes (25/26) and wing attack Gina Crampton in the first half.

Those two positions were filled respectively by Maia Wilson (27/30) and Grace Rasmussen after halftime, when Southby made a string of changes.

"We had a lot of respect for Wales coming into this game and we had targets that we wanted to hit," Selby-Rickit said.

"We've had a long tour and we wanted to keep building on what we've done in the last few games.

"There are some sloppy things that we need to tidy up on for tomorrow."

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