COACH Anna Mayes guided England’s netball team to a comfortable victory over Wales, with Joanne Harten scoring 33 points in their opening Pool B clash at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
England got off to the perfect start and were comfortably 17-7 ahead after the first quarter, with Harten in amongst the action from the off.
That lead was extended to 29-10 by half-time and 48-15 in the third quarter in this not-so-tight home-nation encounter.
England, courtesy of some great finishing from goal shooter Harten, eventually eased home to a 20-point margin at the SECC.
And Swindon-born Mayes was thrilled with how the 2010 bronze medallists took to the task.
“I’m delighted with the start. The first game always sets the tone for the tournament and I was really pleased,” she said.
“We’ve been waiting for this day to come for so long that sometimes the excitement and adrenaline can get a bit heavy.
“We had a good start and demonstrated patience in attack and I feel like everyone had a great impact.
“The atmosphere is amazing, we have a Barmy Army that has come to support us which is amazing, the girls really thrive off that.
“Glasgow have been so welcoming, and we’re just to build day by day and I genuinely believe this will be the best England side there has ever been.”
Lying in wait for Mayes’ side – who were not in action on Thursday – are Delhi 2010 silver medallists Australia today (Saturday).
Despite the task at hand, Mayes is confident of continuing the winning start and progressing from Pool B.
“The Welsh gave us a really good run today, but we’re looking forward to Australia,” she added.
“Wales could not be underestimated, we were really looking forward to the fact it was them first up and then to back that up against Australia.
“Hopefully we can put in a similar sort of performance and put ourselves in a good position, but what medal we get at the end of the day will come down to which teams perform best on the day.
“These guys have got a huge capacity, though. We were eager to get out but sometimes having a day off, like Thursday, is great.
“Sometimes it’s about keeping sharp, but I’m really pleased with how our schedule is.”
- Commonwealth Games England (CGE) leads and manages the participation of the Team England at the Commonwealth Games and Commonwealth Youth Games. We work with sports, Sponsors and Sport England to support the development of athletes and their sports, and to achieve success at Games-time.