The Roses were gradually bested by a commanding Australian team who extended their lead to secure a 61-45 win.
However, their journey ended with a silver medal from Cape Town.
Despite the disappointment, England managed to match their country’s best previous performance in the tournament, a feat last achieved in 1975 during a round-robin event.
Regrettably, they might dwell on the missed opportunities and subpar play that allowed the Diamonds to further cement their hold on the trophy, especially in the decisive final quarter.
“Unquestionably, we are devastated with a loss margin of this size, but it goes to show the gap between seasoned finalists and a team making their debut,” said England’s head coach, Jess Thirlby.
“It was always going to be a challenging game, you simply cannot afford careless passes against Australia in a final.
“If we lose possession, we need to find a way to regain it. Sadly, both these aspects evaded us for substantial periods during the match.”
Key highlights and expert analysis from Australia’s victory over England
The Roses feel the sting of their first final loss
England had clinched a thrilling 56-55 victory against the Diamonds earlier in the week, but replicating this success against a nation that has made an appearance in every World Cup final was a leap too far.
Australia’s invincibility was slightly diminished after England secured a Commonwealth gold against them on the Gold Coast in 2018.
But the Diamonds retaliated, curtailing England’s Commonwealth campaign at the semi-final stage in Birmingham last year, culminating in this final, adding a new chapter to an increasingly heated rivalry that typically tilts in Australia’s favour.
“We are immensely grateful for the silver medal, and over time the reality of this achievement will set in,” said Thirlby.
“The disappointment we’re experiencing is indicative of the confidence we had in ourselves.”
Although Australia maintains their supremacy in world netball, England’s presence in the final and Jamaica’s bronze-medal victory over New Zealand earlier in the day demonstrate the formidable competition.
“We got the upper hand the other day, and they outplayed us today,” said England shooter Eleanor Cardwell.
“There are numerous positives. This is the first World Cup final for everyone on the team, whereas many of the Diamonds players bring vast experience.
“I am exceptionally proud of our historic achievement. Last year at the Commonwealth Games, we finished fourth and were devastated. This year, we’ve earned a silver medal.”
In the five years since their Commonwealth gold, England has bested Australia only twice in 11 matches. Still, they aspire to use this final as a stepping-stone towards higher achievements.
England mid-courter Imogen Allison, who consistently delivered key performances for the Roses in this tournament, expressed immense pride in the team.
“We must seize this moment and move forward. If this is our first time in the final, next time we are bringing home the gold,” she stated.
England Struggles on the Biggest Stage
Despite gaining confidence from their earlier win against the Diamonds, Australia was driven by the desire to rectify their unusual defeat.
Keen to reestablish their dominance in world netball, Australia’s head coach Stacey Marinkovich played all her cards right to keep England on the defensive throughout the final.
The match’s tone was established when the Roses lost possession on their initial center pass, but they fought to maintain a 13-13 tie after the first quarter.
The Diamonds began to pull ahead, and England found it difficult to handle an agile offensive circle, reinforced by shooters Sophie Garbin and Kiera Austin.
England’s coach Thirlby explored multiple defensive combinations to slow down the Australian scoring spree, but a four-goal lead quickly turned into six before the final quarter saw a complete unraveling.
A comeback seemed improbable even after half-time, as England appeared to lack the self-belief that had propelled them through the tournament.
Australia took advantage of England’s erratic passes and loose play in crucial areas, and the Roses struggled to regain possession – an area where they had previously excelled.
The Australian team, both on the court and bench, sensed an imminent victory with several minutes left, as the Roses, in their first World Cup final, looked increasingly out of their depth.
Questions will be raised about Thirlby’s choice and timing of substitutions, but ultimately, England was outclassed by a team well-versed in clinching big finals.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Netball World Cup 2023
What was the final score of the Netball World Cup 2023 final between Australia and England?
The final score of the Netball World Cup 2023 final was 61-45 in favor of Australia. They defeated England to secure their 12th World Cup title.
How did England perform in their first-ever Netball World Cup final?
England put up a valiant effort in their first-ever Netball World Cup final. Despite their loss to Australia, they made history by reaching the final, showing significant progress in the tournament.
How many times has Australia won the Netball World Cup?
Australia has won the Netball World Cup 12 times, establishing their dominance in the tournament over the years.
What was the key factor that led to Australia’s victory in the final?
Australia’s victory in the final was attributed to their dominant play and ability to capitalize on England’s mistakes. Their dynamic attack circle, supported by precise shooting, contributed significantly to their win.
What achievement did England equal at the Netball World Cup 2023?
Despite not clinching the title, England equaled their nation’s best result at the Netball World Cup. They matched their previous achievement from 1975 when they finished as runners-up in a round-robin event.
How did England’s previous record against Australia impact the final?
England had only beaten Australia twice in their 11 meetings since winning Commonwealth gold five years ago. While they managed to secure a victory against the Diamonds earlier in the tournament, Australia’s experience and skill proved decisive in the final.
More about Netball World Cup 2023
- BBC Sport: Netball World Cup final 2023: England 45-61 Australia – Roses miss out on historic title
- The Guardian: Netball World Cup 2023: Australia beat England 61-45 to win 12th title
- Netball World Cup 2023 Official Website
- Sky Sports: Netball World Cup 2023: England fall to 61-45 defeat against Australia in final