England 65-53 Uganda: Roses win series with a match to spare

Helen Housby helped England open a 17-point lead in the first halfEngland wrapped up a series win over Uganda with a match to spare, despite a late fightback from the visitors at London’s Copper Box.Having edged Tuesday’s opener in Liverpool by four points, the Roses won 65-53 to take an unassailable 2-0 series lead into Sunday’s final match.The Commonwealth Games champions dominated the first half before Uganda edged the final two quarters.”We’ve still got one important match to go,” said head coach Tracey Neville.”Although we lost the second half, I was really pleased with the execution and the players that injected a little bit of energy into the game.”Netball tips from England starsWith Helen Housby and Rachel Dunn combining well, the Roses took a 17-point lead at the halfway stage, while Neville said goal defender Jodie Gibson was England’s standout player.But, just as in the opening game of the series, Uganda threatened to stage a comeback.Captain and shooter Peace Proscovia helped the She Cranes reduce the deficit, but England held on despite a number of late changes.Fran Williams was handed a debut as Neville looked to give players opportunities before next summer’s Netball World Cup in Liverpool.”There’s some answers from our coaching point of view about players that are still in contention for that World Cup place and about giving them opportunities to put their best foot forward,” Neville told BBC Radio 5 live sports extra.”You can’t play the same seven in every game of a tournament, so I want to know what impact players can make when they come on.”The final game in the three-match series takes place at the Copper Box on Sunday (14:15 GMT), with live commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra.”We have still got to be clinical and we have objectives we want to achieve,” added Neville. “It is about the big picture of the World Cup so we have got to keep our mind focused on that.”England starting seven: Dunn (GS), Housby (GA), Haythornthwaite (WA), Guthrie (C), Clarke (WD), Gibson (GD), Usoro-Brown (GK).Uganda starting seven: Proscovia (GS), Nanyonga (GA), Nakachwa (WA), Kizza (C), Namuwaya (WD), Ajio (GD), Nanfuka (GK).Quarter scores: Q1 19-11, Q2 39-22, Q3 51-35, Q4 65-53.

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