Reply To: 2024 Vitality Netball Nations Cup – Eng / Aus / NZ / Uga (Jan)

Reply To: 2024 Vitality Netball Nations Cup – Eng / Aus / NZ / Uga (Jan)2024-01-29T12:50:35+10:00
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    I think Aus have quietly been very good at replacing important players over the past few years. They seem to go through this cycle of having losses in NZ that raise questions about how they can fill the holes left by players like Bueta, Wood & Brazill before working things out by the time the next series arrives. There’s always good midcourt talent so I’m not worried there, especially with JLP looking like she could dominate for many years to come.

    It’s the defensive end that will be more challenging just because of how good the trio of Bruce, Weston & Klau are. Very hard to replace players of that quality & who are so complimentary regardless of planning. A lot will ride on the development of Ervin, Aryang, Hinchliffe and RBD, and whether they can get two genuine GK options from that crop, or if someone else proves themselves in the next few years. Having Ervin and Hinchliffe at SCL with Bruce and Belinda Reynolds is definitely valuable. Also interesting to see what Richo can do with the Mavericks defenders.

    I have to say, this series hasn’t convinced me of England’s approach to blooding a lot of newer players during their last two series. It’s all very well and good to give players like Neill, Glasgow and Joseph international experience, but if they don’t get to play much with Housby and Metcalf, England end up in familiar position for an important final. Aus are good at neutralising that pair (Metcalf in particular) and then they don’t seem to have a solid Plan B. And on the defensive side of things, it feels like they have some good talent without much certainty of which combinations are most effective for different situations. I’m not sure what the thinking was starting with Fadoju in WD ahead of Carter, for example, or if they know how to respond when Marinkovich brings Austin on from the bench.

    On that note, I’m curious if Australia will move towards starting with Dwyer more often now. I’m not entirely convinced that’s the better choice than Austin in GA, but Dwyer’s performance in the final was very pleasing to see. Also great to see Garbin play with so much confidence and skill throughout the tournament. Interesting that Marinkovich prefers Garbin and Dwyer together when Garbin and Austin will be playing together domestically this year. Also that she likes Koenen as a GA option when Koenen doesn’t get to play there a huge amount in her SSN team.

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