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Expect a dogfight for World Cup crown, warns rookie Robinson

Sanjay Myers
Sport Reporter
@ The Netball World Cup
In Liverpool, England

Thursday, July 11, 2019

LIVERPOOL, England — Young Sunshine Girl Rebekah Robinson believes the 2019 Netball World Cup will be a dogfight, with a lot of teams closely matched and all shooting for podium finishes.

Robinson, 24, is about to play her first World Cup, less than a year after being part of the Jamaica team, which claimed bronze at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia.

“The Commonwealth Games was the previous big time for me. It was great exposure but it won't be like the World Cup. The World Cup is more of a dog eat dog world, because everybody is going for that gold, everybody wants to be number one in the world,” she told the Jamaica Observer yesterday.

“It's going to be a lot more difficult, plus we have back to back games, so it's going to be rough on the body. But we have been preparing a lot, and we're prepared for that,” said Robinson, who is capable as a goal attack or goal shooter.

Number two-rated Jamaica are slated to meet 17th-ranked Fiji on tomorrow's opening day, with hopes of building momentum towards their first podium finish at the World Cup since claiming bronze in 2007.

Possible obstacles are top-ranked Australia, who are defending three-time champions, and respective third- and fourth-ranked teams England and New Zealand.

“We're expecting to medal, that's at the forefront of our minds. But we are taking it one game at a time, we're going out to win each game, no matter how low or high [opposing] teams are ranked,” she noted regarding Jamaica's chances.

And if given the opportunity she is hoping to turn heads throughout the tournament.

“Jamaican fans can expect Rebekah to shine and they can expect Rebekah to go out there and give her best on court at all times.

A look into her playing background provides insight into her confident nature.

Throughout her life she has been exposed to the sport.

From St Aloysius Primary through to Immaculate Conception High, and then to the club level she has been honing her craft.

“I've been playing netball from as long as I can remember — it was a family sport so my mommy would play with me, even when she was pregnant. I grew up watching her in the church league and watching my aunts, so before I could even walk well I was playing netball.

“I loved it so much I would play it every day, and in practising everyday you're getting better. And people are telling you 'you know, you're doing well and improving'. So coming through primary and high school you're the top girl in netball, and then you're introduced to the clubs.

“I was introduced to playing in the club league by Janet Guy and played for Alpha, before I moved on to Liguanea and from there to UWI. Coaches saw my potential and said 'you know, you can do this' or 'you have the potential to be one of the best', so that's how it took off,” said Robinson, who plays for St Ann Orchids in Jamaica's Elite League.