Netball: England fight back to beat New Zealand in extra time

England netball
England also beat New Zealand in August's Quad Series in Auckland

England completed a superb comeback to beat New Zealand 64-57 in extra time in their opening game of the Quad Series.

Tracey Neville's side were six goals adrift heading into the final quarter in London, but stormed back to level the game at 49-49.

Kadeen Corbin missed a shot to win for the hosts in normal time but, roared on by a home crowd, they clinched victory.

England now face world champions Australia on Monday, before heading to Johannesburg to play South Africa.

World number one side Australia beat South Africa 54-50 earlier on Saturday.

England show winning mentality

Serena Guthrie and Samantha Sinclair
England centre Guthrie (left) is one of six players in the squad who play their club netball in Australia

Having missed out on a first series win against New Zealand in September, England looked like throwing away another opportunity to beat the world number two side when they fell to a four-goal deficit in the first quarter.

Despite superb defensive pressure from Geva Mentor, the Roses struggled against the Silver Ferns' defensive zone, and goal attack Mario Folau was in fine shooting form at the other end.

But England head coach Neville said this week her side had been working on a "winning mentality", something goalkeeper Mentor admitted had held them back in the past, and the change certainly showed in London.

Neville's side turned it around in the second quarter, with patient play into shooters Helen Housby and Corbin giving them a one-goal lead at half-time.

A poor third quarter set England back once again as Chelsea Pitman, a former Australia international, struggled to find Corbin with NZ goalkeeper Temalisi Fakahokotau utterly dominant.

New Zealand went into the final period with a healthy six-goal advantage, but Neville brought on Beth Coden and Eboni Beckford-Chambers in defence, and they made the difference.

The home side, led by the physicality of Serena Guthrie in the centre court, were 49-48 up with one and a half minutes remaining but New Zealand levelled as the nerves began to show inside the Copper Box.

When England goal shooter Corbin had a chance to seal victory in normal time and failed to find the net, the home side's chance looked to have gone.

But New Zealand, apparently confused by the time remaining on the clock, were in no hurry to take the ball into their attacking end and the game went to extra time.

The home side were stronger both mentally and physically in the extra periods as Guthrie cemented her player of the match performance with vital turnovers to see England home.

Neville's side have now beaten New Zealand three times in the past six months.

England starting line-up: Corbin, Housby, Pitman, Guthrie, Clarke Agbeze, Mentor

New Zealand starting line-up: Mes, Folau, Kara, Sinclair, Cullen, Grant, Fakahokotau.

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