Although both sides have yet to negotiate their way to the semi-finals, Johannesburg coach Elsje Jordaan believes his side will be ready to give title favorites Tshwane a battle if this weekend’s final comes down to a Gauteng derby at the Spar National Netball Championships in Potchefstroom.
After winning three SA titles in succession, Tshwane missed last year’s national championships due to positive Covid tests in their squad.
However, they picked up where they left off this week, going undefeated in the round-robin phase of the national showpiece.
Johannesburg, meanwhile, picked up five wins from their six round-robin matches to finish second in the standings, losing in a narrow 34-32 loss to Tshwane in their only loss.
In Friday’s semi-final, Tshwane will face Mangaung and Johannesburg will meet hosts Dr. Kenneth Kaunda.
“We are now focused on the semi-final. We just want to get through this and not think too far ahead,” Jordaan said.
“If we go to the final, we hope it will be against them and we will be looking forward to that game,” she added.
“Earlier in the week I thought we had a good game against them. We didn’t waste our chances, our error rate was just too high so it was all our mistakes although they applied good pressure.
“The Gauteng derbies are always exciting and there’s a lot of pride involved, so hopefully we get some revenge against them.”
Defending champions Cape Winelands, who clinched the title last year in the absence of some of the country’s top teams, crashed out ahead of the playoffs after picking up just two wins in the round-robin stage, including a technical win over Buffalo City.
Falling short of racial goals by not including enough white players on their team, Buffalo City had to win their games by at least six points to give themselves a chance, and they finished bottom of the log.