As the Netball World Cup's first stage comes to a close, the Silver Ferns' real test begins.

Topping off an encouraging start to their World Cup campaign, the Ferns finished top of their pool with a massive 89-21 victory over Singapore tonight (NZT) in Liverpool.

The win will see the side progress to group F of the competition where they are set to cross paths with World Cup defending champions and long-time rivals, the Australian Diamonds.

The clash against the Diamonds will pose the first real challenge for the Ferns so far in the tournament and could be the turning point of New Zealand's campaign.


Should they pull off a win, hopes of bringing home the World Cup this year will be high among the Ferns camp but a loss could dampen the mood.

However, it won't be something at the forefront of coach Noeline Taurua's mind just yet with a couple days yet to prepare and time to reflect on tonight's match.

Having beaten Singapore by more than 40 goals in three of the four matches between the two nations previously, there wasn't much the Ferns had to worry about.

As another opportunity to manage court time and test new combinations on court, Taurua said the clash highlighted her side's strengths moving forward.

Silver Ferns head coach Noeline Taurua during preliminaries stage one. Photo / Getty
Silver Ferns head coach Noeline Taurua during preliminaries stage one. Photo / Getty

"One of the most pleasing things is that we've got really versatile players and they can play different positions and slowly as the competition is starting to progress, were seeing combinations that are starting to form," Taurua said after the game. "That's a strength and we've just got to keep building as we head into the business end.

"There were some areas that I thought we did really well in and we wanted to work on some set pieces and at times it was alright, overall I'm really happy."

Karin Burger was put to the test alongside Jane Watson as she sported Katrina Rore's usual goal defence bib.

Proving her value in the defence circle with a player-of-the-match performance, Burger thrived from the switch-up while Rore continued to showcase her abilities in the midcourt.


Storming ahead in the first half, the Silver Ferns dominated across the court with relentless defence and flow on attack.

Silver Ferns shooter Maria Folau. Photo / Photosport
Silver Ferns shooter Maria Folau. Photo / Photosport

Singapore suffered plenty of turnovers, failing to get much ball into the hands of their shooters, while defenders Melody Teo and Sindhu Nair struggled to combat the Silver Ferns shooting unit.

With the luxury of a mammoth 35 goal lead at half time, the rotations continued from the Ferns' bench as all 12 players were given court time and periods of rest.

Meanwhile, Singapore made little changes to their starting line-up as they limped through a tough final two quarters.

And although the Ferns continued to dominate scoring a massive 26 goals in the final quarter, finishing with their highest score of the tournament will have been a big tick for the Singapore side.

The Ferns will carry their first round points into to the second stage of the competition, where they will face Northern Ireland, Zimbabwe and Australia.