The U21s during their recent
triumph at the Setia Motors
Netball Championship. Picture:
With a semi-final spot the minimum target, the Sultanate's Under-21 national netball team continues its preparation in the lead up to the 8th Asian Youth Netball Championship.
The 10 team tournament that is being hosted in Brunei will run from June 30-July 7.
Nine of the Under-21 teams that will be travelling to Brunei are defending champions Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Singapore, India, Japan, Hong Kong, Maldives, Nepal and Thailand.
The competition will be held at the Indoor Stadium of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.
The Under-21 team have showed themselves to be a promising side after their game tour to Singapore saw them win their last six games in addition to just one draw and one loss.
Unfortunately their loss was to the Singapore Under-21 National team with a heavy 74-13 defeat.
After returning from their tour they took the VIII Setia Motors Netball Championship title with ease after dominating Ivy League 48-12 in the final, a result national netball coach Thilaka Jinadasa expected.
The Under-21 team prevented all their opponents from scoring double digits in all their group games and semi-final match ups.
"We will be playing a friendly game this Saturday and we have two more games scheduled for next week," said Jinadasa.
She told The Brunei Times in a recent interview that she hopes to reach the semi-finals for their upcoming tournament.
"I am doing this so that I can maintain and synchronise my training rhythm.
"They also need to keep playing friendly matches to keep them focused.
"Last week I slowed down their training, so that the players could recover from the intensive training.
"I have seen that they have been showing progress over the last few weeks.
"I give them special work outs before every training session, which usually last for about one hour to an hour and a half.
"That's why I plan for them to play one to two matches per week until the tournament starts," added the Sri Lankan national who coached her country to victory in the 2009 edition of the Asian Netball Championship.
Jinadasa led the national team to their first ever Asian Netball Championship in Colombo, Sri Lanka last year in August.
She led Brunei, who were ranked lowest at 10th to finish the tournament in sixth position following an impressive record of two wins, one draw and three losses in their pool B matches.