By Mphatso Malidadi:
Malawi national netball team shooter, Joyce Mvula, was named Player-of-the-Match after inspiring her English side, Manchester Thunder, to reach the final of the Vitality Netball Super League on Saturday.
Thunder defeated Team Bath 57-54 in a breathtaking semifinal to set up a tie against Wasps in the grand final.
Wasps made it after beating Loughborough Lightning 74-54.
This will be Thunder’s first final since 2014 while Wasps will be competing for their third crown in succession.
Mvula, who was signed from Lilongwe’s Blue Eagles Sisters three years ago, said she was excited to have helped her team.
“It was a tough game. As a team, we were so determined to win. I am glad to have helped my team to progress to the final. I also thank my teammates for contributing to my success,” she said.
Thunder Coach, Karen Greig, told BBC Sport that they had a slow start.
“Unbelievable performance! We were slow out of the blocks but, once we found our feet, we really chipped away at them and put them under a lot of pressure.
“It was not a perfect performance but it was a pressure game and we dealt with it really well. We tweaked a few things in defence after Bath crucified us a few times there this season,” Greig said.
Mvula’s former coach, Sam Kanyenda, said the shooter had blossomed into a top class player.
“No wonder she is the most reliable player for Thunder this season,” Kanyenda said.