Record crowd watches netball thriller - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Record crowd watches netball thriller

By Adrian Warren 30/07/2004 10:41:12 PM Comments (0)

A world record netball crowd witnessed defending national league champions the Melbourne Phoenix launch a stunning final-quarter comeback to defeat ladder leaders the Sydney Swifts 48-47 at Sydney Super Dome.

In an astonishing final quarter, the crowd of 13,463, which surpassed the previous bests of around 10,500 for the last year's grand final and the 2002 Commonwealth Games final in Manchester, were stunned as the Phoenix scored the last five goals to notch a memorable victory.

Swift shooter Catherine Cox, the competition's leading scorer, missed with the last two shots of the game.

Sydney lost despite taking nine more attempts with Phoenix shooting 87 per cent to the home team's 73 per cent.

Cox finished with 32 goals at 78 per cent, but was outshone by a proven game performer Sharelle McMahon, who bagged 30 at 91 per cent.

The loss could have dire consequences for Sydney, which will almost certainly miss out on the minor premiership after the loss and will probably have to play its major semi-final in Adelaide.

Sydney, which lost its two other matches at the Olympic venue, started the evening leading on percentage from Adelaide.

However, with the Thunderbirds playing the bottom two teams in their last two fixtures, Adelaide took over as favourite to secure the minor premiership.

Sydney led 11-10 and 23-21 at the first two breaks.

The Swifts scored the first three goals of the second half to lead 26-21, but a 13-4 run by the Phoenix gave the visitors a four-goal lead.

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