Game Six Preview – England vs. Australia

The Vitality Roses taken on the Australian Diamonds live on the BBC and Sky Sports. Credit @mbphotonz

The Vitality Roses face their biggest test of the Netball World Cup so far as they take on world number one side Australia in their final pool game, live on BBC Two, BBC iPlayer, and Sky Sports Main Event and Arena.

England have made a perfect start to their World Cup campaign, winning five out of five whilst not dropping a quarter, securing their semi-final spot on Tuesday evening against Fiji.

Their opponents, who have won the tournament a record 11 times, have also won all of their games and have scored the most goals in Cape Town with 419 so far.

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When it comes to the head-to-head, Australia have never lost to England at a World Cup so a Vitality Roses victory would be their first in 14 meetings at the tournament, and a first since January 2019.

Ones to watch

Whilst she may be one of the older members of the team, Ash Brazill is competing at her first World Cup and after announcing she will be retiring after the tournament, the Commonwealth Games champion will be hoping to end her a career on a high with World Cup gold. The 33 year-old dual-code athlete, who also plays Aussie Rules, was a standout player for the Diamonds in Birmingham last summer and will be keeping close tabs on Nat Metcalf and Chelsea Pitman at wing defence.

Another player in the defensive end who could be pivotal in this match is Courtney Bruce. The Diamonds goal keeper has had a great World Cup so far and is second overall for intercepts and deflections. This follows an incredible season in Suncorp Super Netball where she finished top for defensive rebounds, second for deflections and third for intercepts. Having come up against Eleanor Cardwell and Helen Housby this season with West Coast Fever, the defender will be hoping to use that experience to break up England’s dynamic duo.

Whilst Sophie Garbin may be one of the more inexperienced members of the team, the 26-year-old has had an excellent tournament so far and leads the World Cup for goals scored with 188. The shooter, who will know Geva Mentor well from her time at Collingwood Magpies, had a particularly impressive game against Fiji scoring 54 from 60 across three quarters. Alongside Steph Wood, Cara Koenen and Kiera Austin, who all featured against England in last year’s Commonwealth Games semi-final, the Diamonds have strength in depth in their attacking ranks.

Where to watch

Watch the Vitality Roses take on the Australian Diamonds live on BBC Two, BBC iPlayer, and Sky Sports Main Event and Arena, with the first centre pass at 8am (UK time).

Keep up to date with what’s happening inside the England camp by following us on our socials @EnglandNetball.

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