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Silver Ferns hammer England in Quad Series

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 2/02/2017

New Zealand achieved two of their primary goals in a comprehensive 61-37 win over England in their Quad Series Test in Liverpool.

The Silver Ferns defence was too staunch for the hosts, who fell seven goals behind in the first six minutes and rarely looked like closing the gap.

It leaves both teams with a win and a loss with one round remaining in the travel-heavy tournament.

New Zealand improved hugely on their opening 57-50 loss to unbeaten Australia in Durban.

Coach Janine Southby had identified two areas to improve - making a superior start and completing more turnovers.

Her side responded by powering 8-1 clear on the back of English errors and some early long bombs from goal attack Maria Tutaia (33 from 37).

A brief England flurry reduced the first-quarter deficit to 16-13 but seven successive goals early in the second second stanza effectively made the game safe.

Southby started veteran Anna Harrison at wing defence ahead of Sam Sinclair, who made her debut in Durban.

The move worked, with Harrison working in tandem with her midcourt and the defensive circle.

Goal keep Jane Watson was named player of the match, helping force 37 turnovers from the English compared to New Zealand's 21.

New Zealand were 31-19 clear at halftime, with the only hiccup being a back injury which forced goal shoot Bailey Mes (8/8) from the court, replaced by the impressive Te Paea Selby-Rickit (20/21).

Soutby introduced Gina Crampton for wing attack Grace Rasmussen at halftime before handing lanky 20-year-old Kelly Jury her Test debut. Jury played the last seven minutes at goal keep as New Zealand dominated the final quarter 19-7.

New Zealand's final Test is in London on Sunday against a South African side that lost 60-55 to England in extra time and went down 62-46 to Australia.

England must upset Australia in the other game to give the Silver Ferns any chance of denying the Diamonds a succesful defence of their Quad Series title.

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