Zimbabwe’s Gems gave it their best shot on Saturday but could not stand the heat against 10-time World Cup champions, Australia, and lost 73- 37 in their second game of the 2019 Vitality World Cup in Liverpool, England.
The difference in class is evident from the final score-line as the Gems were no match for the taller and stronger Aussies, who are the most dominant force in world netball and have the honour of being the holders of the World Cup.
The Australians have won 10 of the 14 World Cup tournaments since this global netball festival was introduced way back in 1963, and are also favourites to retain their title in Liverpool.
However, the Zimbabweans will take comfort in the fact that they are still very much in the run for a place in the second round of the festival after Sri Lanka fell in their second game of the tournament and this time 67-50 to Northern Ireland.
The Gems will need to beat Northern Ireland in the final game Sunday to secure their place in the last 12 of the tournament. Having seen Northern Ireland struggle against Sri Lanka there is optimism that Zimbabwe will win this final game.
Should that not happen and Australia win against Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe will still secure their ticket as Sri Lanka would finish without a single point.
Farai Gore, co-ordinator of the Gems’ activities in Liverpool, says there are high hopes that Zimbabwe will progress to the next round.
“We think that we will make it to the next round taking into account that we beat Sri Lanka and we are capable of beating Northern Ireland. I urge all people in Liverpool to come and support our team.”
The Gems are participating for the first time in the Vitality World Cup.