Ian HarkinModeratorAugust 25, 2021 at 5:08 pmPost count: 10196
Preliminary Final… GIANTS Netball 64 def West Coast Fever 61
The intensity of the match was worthy of a final, and we need to pay respect to the GIANTS. They had a game plan, executed it perfectly and completely took away Fever’s strengths – it was a tactical masterclass from Julie Fitzgerald and her team.
Julie has done an exceptional job of developing her young players. She’s been coaching for a long time, and she’s such a good people manager. However, at Diamonds’ level, the Sisters in Arms culture meant that even prior to the first camp of the season, the team leaders would have been on the phone to the newbies making them feel welcome, and taking up the responsibility of helping them to have the best debut possible. So helping young players to feel comfortable in their environment is everyone’s responsibility, and I’m sure that the GIANTS would all understand this…Ian HarkinModeratorAugust 31, 2021 at 10:04 pmPost count: 10196
Grand final… NSW Swifts 63 d GIANTS Netball 59
The match played out as I thought, and while the Swifts took control early, I really admired the GIANTS ability to fight back.
The Swifts knew they had to get on top from the start, and their first five minutes were outstanding. They executed well and the GIANTS didn’t know how to handle that. If the Swifts had been able to maintain their defensive work for longer, which is very hard to do, it could have been a blow out. And all credit to the GIANTS for not being overwhelmed and then working their way back into the game.
With the Swifts getting out to an early lead, it would have created doubt in the GIANTS, and I was particularly concerned about the defenders. At times April and Sam looked a bit uncertain of what to try next. They needed some clear guidelines – which they got from Julie – and went to a split circle defence. It was definite and they did pick up some ball from that.JRParticipantSeptember 1, 2021 at 7:32 amPost count: 894
Thanks so much for these articles during the year, they have been a wonderful initiative.
Maddy P playing with a broken rib – wow. Hope she gets time on the court as the starting Diamonds Centre.Ian HarkinModeratorSeptember 21, 2021 at 6:16 amPost count: 10196
London Pulse’s Sam Bird joins us to cast her eye over the first NZ v Eng test match…
General thoughts about the game
It looked like both teams were tentatively feeling each other out, which was to be expected given the circumstances – the pandemic, the limited amount of preparation they’d had, and the logistics of having players from both sides coming out of quarantine.
Both Jess Thirlby and Dame Noeline Taurua would have been looking at building combinations, as both teams had a number of either relatively new players out on court, or ones that hadn’t played international netball for some time.
For the Roses, Geva Mentor and Layla Gusgoth haven’t played internationally since the 2019 Netball World Cup, while Beth Cobden is also back in the red dress after a series of knee injuries. For the Silver Ferns, Tiana Metuarau made her debut, while Maddy Gordon is also relatively new to this level. Gina Crampton is the Silver Ferns newly appointed captain, and sometimes that can also impact on court performance.
Read more…Ian HarkinModeratorSeptember 23, 2021 at 11:51 amPost count: 10196
Tamsin Greenway analyses the second test…
England Roses 55 d New Zealand Silver Ferns 45
This was a game of two halves, with New Zealand stronger in the first half, and then England winning a dominant second half by 13 goals. However it felt very classic Dame Noeline – go steady in game one, expose players in game two, and then put the foot down in game three.
What was impressive was that England gained in confidence as the game went on, and continued to build their lead to the final whistle.
Read more…Ian HarkinModeratorSeptember 25, 2021 at 3:06 pmPost count: 10196
In the final View from the Bench for the Taini Jamison Trophy, we asked Northern Stars head coach Kiri Wills for her thoughts on the key matchups and strategies which decided the series…
English Roses 49 defeated New Zealand Silver Ferns 45
This was another game of two halves. The Silver Ferns came out strongly and had the measure of the young English goalers in the first half. But it was England’s experienced mid-court who eventually got them back in the game and eventually saw them walk away with the trophy.
When English head coach Jess Thirlby switches players, the strategy is still the same, but the personnel play so differently. So, if you look at that shooting end and how someone like Sophie Drakeford-Lewis plays compared to Eleanor Cardwell out at goal attack, or when Eleanor drops back to goal shooter instead of George Fisher, the strategies don’t change by the dynamic changes and the way those individual players go about their game impacted on the performance of that shooting circle. That is where I think England had an edge in that their changes brought a different dynamic. The Ferns didn’t adjust.
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