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Dr Kenneth Kaunda and Tshwane powered their way into the final of the SPAR National Netball Championships at the Zwartkloof Private Game Reserve near Bela Bela on Friday, for a repeat of the 2019 final.

Dr Kenneth Kaunda cruised to a 54-16 victory over Cape Town in the first semifinal. They were 25-10 ahead at halftime and in the second half, they restricted the Cape team to six goals against their 29.

Coach Elsje Jordaan was satisfied with the outcome.
“I thought we played a better game today, and all my young players had at least half a game. I am very proud of my team – with six Under 21 players in a squad of 10, it’s a massive achievement just to reach the final.”

In 2019, Dr Kenneth Kaunda were unbeaten until the final, which they lost 54-48 after extra time. By contrast, Tshwane had been beaten twice in the round robin, losing to Dr Kenneth Kaunda and to Mangaung.

“We’re still struggling with the loss last year, but this year is another opportunity for us,” said Jordaan.
“We know we are not going in as favourites. Tshwane are the defending champions and they know how to win. But we have nothing to lose and a gold medal to win, so we will give it our all in the final.”

In the second semifinal, Tshwane had a decisive 55-23 win over neighbours Johannesburg.

On Thursday, Tshwane beat Johannesburg 37-29.
“We had a good talk last night,” said coach Jenny van Dyk.
“We decided to take complete control of the court and to avoid the 50/50 umpiring decisions.
“We had a much better game today,” she said.

SPAR Protea goalshooter Ine-Mari Venter, who was injured earlier in the week, made a welcome return to the court in the second half.

“It was good to see her able to play again,” said Van Dyk.
“But Tanita van Dyk, who is still Under-21 did really well and she is a player to look out for in the future.”
Tanita van Dyk is the niece of netball superstar Irene van Dyk, who played for South Africa and New Zealand.
“She definitely has the genes and she is learning very fast. She has gained a lot of confidence during the week,” said the coach.

She said she expected the final to be a very tough match.
“Dr Kenneth Kaunda are hungry, but so are we.  I think our loss to them earlier in the week make us even more determined to win tomorrow. “I like tough matches, because they bring out the best in my team.”

The finals will be played on Saturday, 12 December 2020 and will be broadcast live on SuperSport Variety 3 from 08h45.