Niamh Cooper’s Netball World Cup diary from the Northern Ireland camp

Northern Ireland's Niamh Cooper
Northern Ireland's Niamh Cooper
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Liverpool will host the Netball World Cup from July 12-21 - with Northern Ireland’s Niamh Cooper providing News Letter readers a daily diary offering insight into life in the Warriors camp across the tournament:

Northern Ireland yesterday lost 47-43 to Malawi.

“Sport can be a cruel place at times.

“Hundreds of hours’ training, sacrifices made to put absolute focus on performance - and sometimes, even despite that, dreams can be shattered on just the finest of margins.

“Small, momentary errors cost us a massive potential win against a strong and confident Zimbabwe team on Sunday and we had a decision to make; let it define our tournament and give up or draw a line under it, learn and go again.

“So, despite feeling so sore, tired and hurt, we decided to go again - we had a short 12-hour turnaround before yesterday’s game with Malawi.

“Our next opponents were another African nation in Malawi so we went in with a similar style and a similar gameplan feeling we just needed to execute it better and more consistently.

“And we did...but that still wasn’t enough as we left it all on the court but fell short.

“We lost to a strong team, that recently comfortably beat us by 17, by just four.

“It’s tough to take but we are a strong group so we learn again and go into another hard game today against New Zealand, a team that could win the World Cup.

“We will relish the opportunity to challenge ourselves but with one eye still on Barbados, an extremely important game, on Thursday.

“So I’m settling down, ready to work again.”