Next up for the Vitality Roses, it’s Fiji in their fifth game in five days. Watch the action live on BBC Three, BBC iPlayer and Sky Sports Arena.
In their first game of Preliminaries Stage Two, Jess Thirlby’s side stepped up the tempo to fend off the Tonga Tala 72-46 in their first meeting at a Netball World Cup.
The Vitality Roses will get a well-earned break on Wednesday after back-to-back games since Friday, but before this, they will need to step up for one more challenge against Fiji.
Nicknamed the Pearls, Fiji are ranked 19th in the world and this is their tenth World Cup. They finished second behind England’s most recent opponents, Tonga, in the Oceania Qualifiers.
Ones to watch:
Adi Bolakoro is a key defender for the Pearls, and someone some of the Vitality Roses will know from her time in the Netball Super League. The 38 year-old featured for Severn Stars in 2021 and 2022 after a short stint with Celtic Dragons. Bolakoro is a versatile player who can play across the defence. Off the court, she is a Lance Corporal in the Royal Engineers so she will be looking to assert her authority in the circle.
At the other end of the court, Fiji have another experienced head in Maliana Rusivakula. The goal shooter, who also had a stint in the UK with the Yorkshire Jets, has experience playing in Suncorp Super Netball with Sunshine Coast Lightning and this is her third World Cup. In their win over Zimbabwe earlier in the tournament, Maliana and her shooting partner Unaisi Rauluni were very effective in the circle with the pair converting 93% of their attempts in their 52-48 win. Jess Thirlby has rotated the defensive end throughout this tournament and this game is set to challenge the strength of those combinations.
Where to watch:
Watch the Vitality Roses against Fiji live on BBC Three and iPlayer, and Sky Sports Arena, with the first centre pass at 7pm (UK time).
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