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Tutaia sinks Australia in Fast 5s decider

NZN 30/10/2016 Samantha Sonogan

New Zealand have blown Australia away 41-16 in the final of the Fast 5s netball world series on the back of another prolific points effort from sharp shooter Maria Tutaia at Hisense Arena .

Facing a daunting 17-point deficit heading into their last quarter power play, Australia failed to score a single point when double points were on offer.

Tutaia was on fire and amassed 27 personal points, including five three pointers, two of which counted for double during her side's second-quarter power play.

New Zealand's power play netted 18 points and effectively ended the Diamonds' tilt at claiming their first Fast 5s title and completing netball's slam.

Australia were favourites heading into the final after reaching the decider undefeated and claiming the prize scalp of the Silver Ferns 32-29 in their electrifying pool game on Saturday night.

Earlier, tournament surprise packets Malawi overcame England 35-32 in one of the upsets of the tournament to secure third place and their best finish against the top six netball nations.

New Melbourne Vixens signing Mwai Kumwenda, who top scored for the tournament with 151 points, led her team to the famous win which will likely be remember for the side's spirited post-match dance celebration.

New Zealand have won six out of the last seven tournaments and their only loss came against Australia in Saturday night's last pool game, 32-29.

Earlier, captain Susan Pettitt played a telling hand in Australia's 26-20 victory over England and Australia completed their pool rounds undefeated with a resounding 31-14 win over winless South Africa

Fast 5s is netball's answer to T20 cricket. The 26-minute matches feature hybrid rules, 5-players a side, multiple point shots and power plays.

Fast 5s Fern captain Tutaia announced her retirement from Fast 5s after 25-point grand final victory.

Tutaia was the tournament's second highest scorer with 129 points.

Fast 5 Diamonds captain Susan Pettitt said she was extremely disappointed with her side's power play.

"The girls did really well considering the situation but when our shots aren't going in and Maria is hitting all of hers, it's hard," Pettitt said.

"Our defensive effort throughout the whole tournament was fantastic but we couldn't stop Maria at the end there, and that's unfortunate.

"We actually weren't too worried about the second quarter (NZ power play) and we still were in range and we knew that but when (Maria) was nailing those threes on our power play, we knew we had to go for sixes and that's not our strength."

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