NS Scoreboard: SSN Round 10 2024

NS Scoreboard: SSN Round 10 2024

Writers: Jenny Sinclair, Ian Harkin, Georgia Doyle

Photographers: Tahliah Harding, Clinton Bradbury, Aliesha Vicars

Cover photo: Tahliah Harding



Adelaide Thunderbirds 57 def GIANTS Netball 42

Melbourne Vixens 63 def Sunshine Coast Lightning 61

Melbourne Mavericks 73 def Queensland Firebirds 61

West Coast Fever 78 def NSW Swifts 71


Helen Housby shoots under pressure. Image Clinton Bradbury/Bradbury Photography




Julie Fitzgerald (GIANTS Netball) celebrated coaching her 400th national league game.

Maddy Proud (Swifts) played her 100th national league game. 

Maddi Ridley made her debut for the Firebirds

Jhaniele Fowler-Nembhard broke her own record for most goals scored in a match, finishing with 75 goals, for 76 points.


Coach Julie Fitzgerald celebrates her 400th national league game in charge, with her Giants team. Image Tahliah Harding.


Maddi Ridley attempts to put a stop to Maisie Nankivell receiving the pass. Image Aliesha Vicars


Jhaniele Fowler-Nembhard on her way to breaking her own goal scoring record. Image Clinton Bradbury/Bradbury Photography





Rudi Ellis (Vixens) – ankle

Eleanor Cardwell (Mavericks) – quad

Kim Ravaillion (Firebirds) – calf





News of the Week


It’s been a huge week on the newsfront in Super Netball, with controversy continuing to swirl around the league.


But first, on the positive side, Julie Fitzgerald AM has coached her 400th national league game. It’s an incredible feat that will most likely never be repeated by any player or coach. Across 27 seasons, Fitzgerald has been an important and influential figure in the world of netball, coaching and mentoring athletes in Australia and overseas, many of whom have gone on to national honours. 

Revered by all those who have played under her or worked alongside her, Fitzgerald has coached at all levels, with her pedigree including the NSW Swifts, Giants Netball, Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic, the World 7, the Australian Institute of Sport, the NSW Institute of Sport, and stints as Assistant Coach of the Australian Under 21s and Senior team. Congratulations to Julie Fitzgerald. 


A special moments between colleagues and rivals, Julie Fitzgerald and Tania Obst. Image Tahliah Harding.


The NSW Swifts have parted company with shooter Sam Wallace-Joseph after a difficult month, this week releasing a statement that read, “For the past number of weeks, the Club has been working with Samantha Wallace-Joseph and her management in relation to a matter which concerned her behaviour within the team environment.

“For the wellbeing of all concerned the nature of the matter will remain confidential. However, it has been mutually agreed that parting ways is the best way forward for both Samantha and the club.”

While Wallace-Joseph played 84 games for the Swifts and won premierships with them in 2019 and 2021, her playing future is currently unknown. While speculation about the matter is rife, matters must have been serious for the club to be stranded without a spearhead with a finals berth on the line. While they are able to name a replacement, most other international quality shooters are under contract with clubs both within Australia and overseas leagues. 

Wallace-Joseph hasn’t made a public statement about the matter, although she did thank Jamaican athletes for their support in an Instagram post. 


Sam Wallace-Joseph and the Swifts have parted company after a tumultuous month. Danny Dalton


Swifts flew into Perth a few days early to regroup. Image Clinton Bradbury/Bradbury Photography


Matters have been equally contentious in Queensland, with the Firebirds parting company with Bec Bulley, the fourth coach they’ve seen off in 3 ½ seasons. Prior to Bulley, assistant coach Sara Francis-Bayman was let go during pre-season, Megan Anderson at the end of 2022, and Rosalie Jencke at the end of 2020. 

Super Netball has never seen a club part company with a coach midseason, and reports have suggested that players were unhappy with the lack of direction they received from Bulley. However, they desperately need an experienced coach in place before the start of free agency period, with five of their team coming to the end of a one year contract. 

Bulley had been signed to a four year contract which would have seen her through to the end of 2026. Like Anderson before her, both coaches were inexperienced at senior level, and lacked support around them, something which the board of Netball Queensland will need to examine. 

Assistant coach Lauren Brown acted as caretaker coach for their Round 10 clash against the Mavericks, but handed in her resignation shortly afterwards. Katie Walker has taken over the reins in the interim. 


Lauren Brown acted as caretaker coach, with injured captain Kim Ravaillion filling the role of assistant coach. Image Aliesha Vicars


The 2024 Pacific Netball Series has been run and won again by Tonga Tala, who won their fourth consecutive series, beating the Fiji Pearls 72-58. Uneeq Palavi once again showed her class, top scoring with 63/66 at 96% and winning Player of the Series. Valu Toutaiolepo, also of Tonga, won the grand final MVP.

The Black Swans, Australia’s inaugural Indigenous team, won four of their five round robin matches, but as an invitational team weren’t able to compete in the grand final. They then surprisingly lost to Singapore on finals day, but it was a good tournament for them, suggesting that big things are to come for this team. 



The Australian Diamonds have started to announce dates for internationals to be held later this season. Match 3 of the Constellation Cup will be held on Sunday 27th of October at RAC Arena at 4pm, as part of Netball WA’s 100th year celebrations. It’s the first international in Perth in 5 years, and remains the fastest state to sell out a netball test in Australia.


The match is also perhaps recognition of Western Australia’s ability to attract a netball crowd. They’ve continued to break records for attendance during the home and away season, with a massive 11 267 people turning up to watch Fever defeat the Swifts. 


Super Netball reserves

(week 3)

Vic Fury 65 def Lightning 61
Thunderbirds 72 def Giants 49
Vic Fury 67 def Firebirds 51
Fever 56 def Swifts 48



Diamonds watch


With up to four places still available in the Diamonds’ squad, defensive midcourter Tayla Williams could well be on the verge of selection. She’s been in sparkling form for the Thunderbirds, and once again turned in an impressive performance. In their win against the Giants, Williams, who’s always been known for her defensive prowess, had a massive 10 deflections for two gains.

Providing ball to her circle has been a work-on for the youngster, but in this game, she outperformed her teammates, with 27 feeds. Williams’ five turnovers were somewhat expensive, and she averages 3.3 per game, an area she could still tidy up on. 


Could Tayla Williams be added to the Diamonds squad later this season. Her form suggests she could be. Image Tahliah Harding.


Ruby Bakewell-Doran and Tara Hinchliffe have both been in strong form at goal defence for their respective clubs, and could be seen as unlucky not to be selected. However, Stacey Marinkovich made her position clear in a recent interview, believing that the Diamonds squad was already goal defence heavy, particularly given the inclusion of rising star Ash Ervin. The Lightning youngster has been in impressive form this season, and at 192cm tall, perhaps has the reach and elevation to trouble international goal shooters more than her slightly shorter alternatives, Courtney Bruce and Sarah Klau. 

Including Ervin gives Marinkovich the option to push either Bruce or Klau forwards into goal defence, and her goal defences into wing defence, making for a rangy unit capable of winning back ball. 

With such flexibility, Marinkovich now has six athletes capable of playing goal defence, squad incumbents Jo Weston, Tilly Garrett and Sunday Aryang included, which is unfortunately for those who missed out, more than enough.





The shooting circle


Have the Vixens found the perfect shooting partnership? Diamonds duo Sophie Garbin and Kiera Austin have built a brilliant combination across the season that bodes well for the international season. They balance the load superbly between them (37/41 and 22/29 respectively in this game) but also balance the circle. Garbin provides a strong presence under the post, but her previous time at goal attack for the Magpies has added movement to her game (see Tactics). She’s now also comfortable driving out of the circle, allowing Austin a perfectly timed entry into an empty circle, often ending right under the post. 


Jhaniele Fowler-Nembhard was a standout for Fever with the incredible shooting stats of 75/76, a new Super Netball record. Shanice Beckford played very well in general play, but her shooting is perhaps a worry, landing just 2/9. Three of these misses were super shot attempts, and with Fowler-Nembhard dominating, Beckford’s lack of accuracy wasn’t important in this match, but it may be in future games.    


Shanice Beckford’s accuracy was down, but her attacking work was sublime. Image Clinton Bradbury/Bradbury Photography



The midcourt


Perhaps lost somewhat in the performance of Jhaniele Fowler-Nembhard, was the return to form of the Fever midcourt and how that helped her stand out. The attacking trio of Alice Teague-Neeld, Kelsey Browne, and Jordan Cransberg, combined for 43 assists and just four turnovers over the 60 minutes. Meanwhile, Jess Anstiss was as solid as ever at wing defence.


With another injury setback, we saw another late replacement in the Vixens midcourt. No Rudi Ellis meant that replacement player Sharni Lambden came straight into the starting seven at wing defence. And she did not disappoint. In fact, she was one of Vixens’ best on court. Not surprisingly she wasn’t able to stop the Australian captain Liz Watson getting her usual mountain of possession, but she was able to consistently frustrate Lightning in their attacking third, finishing with three gains, three deflections, and two pickups. Captain Kate Moloney steered the team around the court expertly and was rewarded with MVP honours, while Hannah Mundy finished with 18 assists.



The defenders


People have run out of superlatives for the Thunderbirds defence, who keep showing up week in, week out. Starting goal defence Tilly Garrett had just 18 minutes of game time in Round 10, leaving Shamera Sterling-Humphrey and Latty Wilson in control of the circle. The pair had an amazing haul of 14 gains, that included 9 intercepts and 15 deflections. Add in a further 10 deflections for Tayla Williams and 1 for Hannah Petty, and that’s a crazy 26 in just one match. They terrorised their Giants opponents into a string of errors, and kept them to their lowest ever score. Shooter Jo Harten recorded just 14/16 as her ball supply completely dried up.


Is Latty Wilson the best player in Super Netball this year. Featured marking Matisse Letherbarrow. Image Tahliah Harding.


There’s an interesting problem coming up for Lightning coach Belinda Reynolds. What to do with Courtney Bruce. Returning from injury, she hasn’t played big minutes as yet, but she will no doubt be fit enough to do so soon. However, the duo of Ash Ervin and Tara Hinchliffe have been doing such a great job in her absence. In round 10, it was when Ervin was reintroduced to replace Bruce in the third quarter, that she sparked Lightning to life and very nearly helped them to a comeback victory. She finished with three gains and eight deflections in just 38 minutes of court time. 


Mavericks’ defensive duo of Olivia Lewis and Kim Jenner made life very difficult for the Firebirds team. Together they combined for nine gains, five intercepts, and 10 deflections. Jenner in particular was able to come up with three vital possession gains in the second quarter to get the Mavericks on top. 





How times have changed. At 184 cm tall, Sophie Garbin is slightly undersized compared to many of the talls seen at goal shooter, but has always made up for it with her brilliant ability to hold space under the post. Following her several years at the Magpies playing predominantly goal attack, Garbin has added movement to her game – a strength highly valued by national coach Stacey Marinkovich. 

Garbin is increasingly confident to drive out of the circle and take on the second phase pass, with three of her highest tallies coming in the last four games. Her highest number ever was in the Vixens huge Round 7 win against Fever, with 17.

While her season tally to date of 86 pales compared to fellow Diamond Cara Koenen’s 132, Garbin has added a valuable and unpredictable (to the opposition) asset to her game, which is promising for both the Vixens and Diamonds. 


Sophie Garbin and Kiera Austin will be a formidable shooting combination for Melbourne Vixens in 2024. Image: May Bailey | Clusterpix Photography

Sophie Garbin and Kiera Austin are a formidable shooting combination for Melbourne Vixens in 2024. Image: May Bailey | Clusterpix Photography



Stat of the week


There were some amazing statistical performances in the shooting circle this week. None more so than that of Jamaican superstar Jhaniele Fowler Nembhard of the West Coast Fever. She broke the record for the most goals (75) and the highest score (76) by a shooter. She finished the game against Swifts with 75/76 at 98.6% and contributed an astonishing 97.4% of Fever’s total score. 

With Fever dominating on the scoreboard, Swifts used the super shot to close the gap. They scored 18 super shots to Fever’s one, with Sophie Fawns nailing 11/15 (including 10/13 in the second half) and Helen Housby 7/9. With Swifts landing a string of two pointers, they outscored Fever by 16-3 in the last power five period to reduce the gap from 20 to seven. 


Mavericks’ win over Firebirds was highlighted by their amazing shooting accuracy. As a team, they scored 66/68 at 97%. Shimona Jok shot 47/49 and Gabby Sinclair finished with 19/19. Included in Sinclair’s stats, she shot a perfect 7/7 from super shot range. And to top things off, Jok was able to rebound both of her misses so they didn’t cost the team anyway. 


Sophie Fawns is part of the Swifts moving circle, and contributed a strong 27 goals, including 11 two pointers. Image Clinton Bradbury/Bradbury Photography



Rolling stat of the season


Statistically speaking, when general play turnovers are counted, they are made up of possession gains (where the opposition wins the ball) and unforced turnovers (where a team loses the ball through their own error). The number of general play turnovers a team has recorded against them is usually a good reflection of their opponents’ defence. 

There is often talk that netball teams should try to limit their general play turnovers to 20 or less in a game. Incredibly, not one team so far this season has managed to do that when playing the Thunderbirds. And so it was again in round 10 when the Giants gave up 31 turnovers. Only once this season has Thunderbirds had more general play turnovers than their opponents, and that was in the loss to Firebirds, when the team looked unusually flat and they were without Georgie Horjus. 

This list shows the average number of general play turnovers each team’s opponents finish the game with. The higher the number, the better.    

Average general play turnovers by opponents: 
25.5 – Thunderbirds 
22.0 – Vixens
18.4 – Swifts
18.1 – Firebirds
17.9 – Fever
17.9 – Giants
17.7 – Mavericks
17.4 – Lightning


The Mop Squad in action. Image Aliesha Vicars



The games


Giants v Thunderbirds

Defending champions, the Thunderbirds continued their quest to defend their title with a dominant 57-42 defeat of Giants. Thunderbirds won all four quarters against a Giants team that was on the wrong end of a lopsided penalty and turnover count. Once again it was in defence where Thunderbirds proved too strong, racking up 21 possession gains, 14 intercepts, and 30 deflections. Latanya Wilson continued her incredible form, being rewarded with another MVP honour, while her defensive partner Shamera Sterling-Humphrey and centre Tayla Williams, also impressed. Once again, as has been the case this year, coach Tania Obst rotated her lineup and got all ten players on court. For Giants, it was a disappointing performance in coach Julie Fitzgerald’s 400th game. One positive was seeing Jodi-Ann Ward back to something like her best.


Georgie Horjus has been playing across wing and goal attack this season. Image Tahliah Harding.


Romelda Aiken-George has been an incredible pick up for the Thunderbirds this season. Image Tahliah Harding.


Lightning v Vixens

Vixens maintained their position on top of the ladder with a nail-biting 63-61 victory over Lightning. One of the shortest held balls on record cruelled Lightning’s chances of leveling the scores and forcing the game into overtime. Vixens were in control throughout the match, leading by as much as 9 goals at one point, but Lightning were always threatening as the match ran down to the wire. Liz Watson was in imperious form for Lightning, while other attackers made a number of rookie errors, and Ash Ervin impressed with 8 deflections. For Vixens, Kate Moloney was a deserved MVP for her work through the middle, their defence forced some of the Lightning’s fumbles, and Kiera Austin and Sophie Garbin continue to go from strength to strength as a partnership.  


Mavericks v Firebirds

Mavericks have kept their playoff hopes alive, beating Firebirds 73-61 to keep them within touching distance of the top four, and the chance of playing finals in their inaugural season. Under the guidance of interim coach Lauren Brown after Bec Bulley was ousted mid-week, Firebirds struggled to find cohesion as the game wore on. It was a physical battle, with Macy Gardner in particular spending more time on the floor than on her feet at times. Despite this being their debut season, and with big name players out injured, Mavericks looked by far the more composed of the two teams. They shot at 97% and Gabby Sinclair nailed 7/7 super shots. Molly Jovic was named MVP after finishing with 29 assists.


Remi Kamo goes for the fly. Image Aliesha Vicars


Shimona Jok and Remi Kamo fly for the ball. Image Aliesha Vicars


Fever v Swifts

Fever kept their second spot on the ladder with a comfortable 78-71 victory over Swifts in front of another record crowd in Perth. After what had been a tumultuous week, Swifts were unable to respond in the second quarter when Fever really put the foot down. Playing in her 100th match, Maddy Proud had a disappointing time and gave up five turnovers in 37 minutes. MVP Jhaniele Fowler-Nembhard was outstanding, scoring a record-breaking 75/76 as Fever established a lead of 20 with just under five minutes left in the match. It was then that Swifts started firing in a series of super shots, landing eight of them in the last power five and reducing the gap to just seven. The result was not really in doubt however.  


Helen Housby shoots under pressure. Image Clinton Bradbury/Bradbury Photography


Helen Housby has led from the front in Wallace-Joseph’s absence, supporting the three young shooters and midcourters around her. Image Clinton Bradbury/Bradbury Photography




Team / Pld / Pts / %

1 . VIXENS . 10 . 36 . 114.0
2 . FEVER . 10 . 32 . 113.3
3 . THUNDERBIRDS . 10 . 28 . 118.9
4 . LIGHTNING . 10 . 16 . 99.3

5 . MAVERICKS . 10 . 16 . 92.8
6 . SWIFTS . 10 . 12 . 94.7
7 . GIANTS . 10 . 12 . 86.0
8 . FIREBIRDS . 10 . 8 . 89.2



Next Round

Sat, Jun 22 – 5:00 pm – FIREBIRDS v FEVER
Sat, Jun 22 – 7:00 pm – THUNDERBIRDS v MAVERICKS (6:30pm local time)
Sun, Jun 23 – 2:00 pm – VIXENS v SWIFTS
Sun, Jun 16 – 4:00 pm – LIGHTNING v GIANTS


Share This Story, Choose Your Platform!

About the Author:

Go to Top