Stellar Oyella third Ugandan to net World Cup century

Saturday July 20 2019

Stella Oyella (foreground) was player of the

Stella Oyella (foreground) was player of the match against Samoa & Scotland. Photo by Ismail Kezaala.  

By ABDUL-NASSER SSEMUGABI

Uganda’s goal attacker Stella Oyella is among the star attractions at the Netball World Cup in Liverpool, England.
After being sent off the court against England, the slit-eyed scorer bounced back with stellar performances that attracted two player of the match accolades as Uganda beat Samoa and Scotland in Group D.

Playing her natural goal attacker position, she has been Uganda’s most reliable scorer, netting 97 in four matches.
Having scored 26 of 29 in the 57-54 win over Trinidad & Tobago, she was equally productive with 27/30 in the 40-67 loss to favourites South Africa in the second preliminary group phase match.

This clinical conversion has made Oyella just the third Ugandan to score a century of goals in the Netball World Cup. Her 97 goals in Liverpool [after the South Africa match] added to her 15 in Sydney 2015 to total 112 goals in two editions.

Obviously, captain Peace Proscovia opened this centurions’ club with 100 goals in just three games in Sydney 2015. The towering shooter enjoyed an explosive World Cup debut, scoring a massive 56 goals in 62 attempts as Uganda walloped Zambia 74-38 in Group D August 7.

She added 37 as the She Cranes beat Fiji 61-40 and wrapped up the century with 26 despite Uganda losing marginally 49-47 to Wales August 10. Proscovia finished the tournament with 243 goals in eight games, which attracted English outfit Loughborough Lightning to hire her services. She has never looked back.

In that very edition Proscovia’s shooting partner Racheal Nanyonga also became a centurion after six games. The pint-sized goal attacker made use of her limited chances. She opened her account with 10 of 14 shots against Zambia, scored her highest [29] against Jamaica, and wrapped it up in Uganda’s 76-33 collapse to New Zealand August 14. She totaled 143 goals.

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Turning tables
In Sydney, Proscovia and Nanyonga shared scoring duties in all Uganda’s eight games Oyella had only three cameo appearances, likewise Florence Amono. At the Commonwealth Games last year, Oyella played once. But in Liverpool, Coach Vincent Kiwanuka has tried several shooting combinations, no wonder debutant Mary Cholock Nuba is Uganda’s highest scorer in a single game [34 vs Samoa].

He has played Nanyonga mostly as wing attack, rested Proscovia in some games, with Oyella taking more scoring chances than ever. Actually, against South Africa it was the first time Proscovia played without partnership with Nanyonga.
Whatever Uganda achieves in Liverpool, due credit goes to Oyella. But she will need an even more stellar World Cup in 2023 to dare Proscovia’s feat of over 300 goals. She is 29 years old.

Precision
This clinical conversion has made Oyella just the third Ugandan to score a century of goals in the Netball World Cup. Her 97 goals in Liverpool [after the South Africa match] added to her 15 in Sydney 2015 to total 112 goals in two editions.

Oyella’s century, July 17, 2019
*15 goals in Sydney 2015
Goals: 17/18 vs Samoa
27/28 vs Scotland
26/29 vs Tobago
27/30 vs South Africa

Proscovia, August 10, 2015
Goals: 56/62 vs Zambia
37/45 vs Fiji
26/32 vs Wales

Nanyonga, August 14, 2015
10/14 vs Zambia
24/29 vs Fiji,
21/23 vs Wales,
15/18 vs Malawi,
29/34 vs Jamaica*
11/18 vs New Zealand

assemugabi@ug.nationmedia.com

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