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England sink New Zealand to reach Netball World Cup final

England reach the final of the Netball World Cup for the first time in history with a stunning 46-40 win over reigning champions New Zealand in Cape Town.

England reached the final of the Netball World Cup for the first time in history with a stunning 46-40 win over reigning champions New Zealand in Cape Town.

The two nations were locked level at 32-32 heading into the fourth quarter of the match, before the Roses sparked a late flurry to eliminate the five-time and current holders.

Jess Thirlby's players let emotion take over as they booked their tickets to a maiden World Cup final, having previously finished as bronze medallists in the last three editions of the tournament.

"I know it is predictable but it is just pride.I just feel like the journey this team have gone on," Thirlby told BBC Sport.

"Everyone wants the same thing. Every team will say they are tight and they have learned and grown, but for the last few games there has just been a different feel to this campaign.

"Sometimes you just have to sit tight through the ups and downs, the wins and the losses, and we have done that. To see out a game goal for goal hasn't really been characteristic of us yet. But to overcome Australia and then finish a game like that with a five or six goal run against the defending champions.

"I think the mental side of our game has massively shifted. Sometimes it takes 56 minutes before you get the reward but they kept at it and got it in the end."

England will play the winner of Jamaica and Australia's semi-final - which takes place later on Sunday afternoon - for the chance to lift the World Cup trophy aloft.

The Roses' best result at the Netball World Cup to date was a runners-up finish behind Australia at the 1975 tournament, which used a round-robin format.

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