NSW Swifts master coach Julie Fitzgerald has led the World 7 Team to a second victory over the Silver Ferns, 53-44 in Rotorua.
The win was set up in the first quarter when the World 7 shocked the Silver Ferns to lead the match 15-7 at the first break, forcing them to play catch up for the remainder of the match.
With a wealth of options at her disposal, Fitzgerald started the match with only a few changes to the line up which took the court on Monday night. England international Tamsin Greenway got the start at WA, whilst team mate Louisa Brownfield slotted into the GS role.
The impressive defensive duo of Geva Mentor and Sonia Mkoloma again provided headaches for the Silver Ferns shooters, who were forced to make an early change bringing Maria Tutaia into the match in the second quarter to replace debutant Anna Thompson.
Leading the match by seven at half-time, there was no respite for the battling Ferns, with the World 7 introducing Jamaican tall-timber Romelda Aiken into the game at GS and Althea Byfield at WD.
The changes injected by the Ferns in the second quarter started to pay dividends in the third with the combination of Langman at C and George at WA putting together some impressive passages of play. But with Dehn and Chokljat controlling the attacking third for the World 7 and Aiken in fine form, the Ferns found themselves trailing by 9 at the final break.
Despite making some strong surges in the final quarter, the Ferns were unable to loosen the grip of the World 7 as they fell to their second consecutive defeat, 53-44.
The Silver Ferns will look to gain some momentum heading into their jam-packed international schedule, which includes tests against the Diamonds, when they play the final test against the World 7 on Saturday 29 August in Auckland.
Australian viewers can catch the action from the Silver Ferns v World 7 on ONE (check your local guides):
Game 1, Monday 31 August, 12pm-2pm on ONE
Game 2, Tuesday 1 September, 10am-12pm on ONE
Game 3, Wednesday 2 September, 10am-12pm on ONE
Quarter by Quarter
Silver Ferns: 7 – 16 (9) – 40 (14) – 44 (14)
World 7: 15 – 23 (8) – 39 (16) – 53 (14)
Irene van Dyk: 26/29 @ 90%
Anna Thompson: 3/5 @ 60%
Maria Tutaia: 15/21 @ 71%
Louisa Brownfield: 14/16 @ 88%
Megan Dehn: 15/18 @ 83%
Romelda Aiken: 24/27 @ 89%
Starting Line ups
Irene van Dyk: GS
Anna Thompson: GA
Liana Barrett-Chase: WA
Temepara George: C
Laura Langman: WD
Joline Henry: GD
Casey Williams: GK
Louisa Brownfield: GS
Megan Dehn: GA
Tamsin Greenway: WA
Natasha Chokljat: C
Peta Sholtz: WD
Sonia Mkoloma: GD
Geva Mentor: GK