The third and final part of a series evaluating statistics from the first six rounds of the 2018 Suncorp Super Netball season.
QP – quarters played; GN – gains; I – intercepts; IPT – intercept pass thrown; DG – deflections with gain; DN – deflections with no gain; R – rebounds; CPR – centre pass receives; PU – pickups; P – penalties; GPT – general play turnovers.
Karla Pretorius is the standout goal defence across the competition so far in 2018. She has 30 gains including 22 intercepts, making her the leading interceptor in the competition. She has 25 deflections (two with a gain), putting her third in the league leaderboard for this stat.
Pretorius starred for the Sunshine Coast Lightning in the 2017 Grand Final and is one of the most consistent performers across the team. She does draw the umpires’ whistle though and is the third-most penalised defender after Courtney Bruce and Sarah Klau.
Stacey Francis has been an outstanding ball-getter for West Coast Fever with 26 gains, including 17 intercepts. She is incredibly useful in bringing the ball down the court, having notched 38 centre pass receives, second only to Bec Bulley. The biggest concern for Francis is a high turnover count undermining her defensive wins.
Jo Weston is third in the league overall for defensive rebounds, with an impressive 25 gains and the highest number of rebounds of any goal defender with 12.
Tara Hinchliffe has had a breakout rookie season for the Firebirds with 23 gains. Her turnovers are amongst the lowest of the players listed here and is on the league leaderboard for intercepts.
Kate Eddy has come on well when given game time, recording six intercepts in just ten quarters on court.
QP – quarters played; GN – gains; I – intercepts; IPT – intercept pass thrown; DG – deflections with gain; DN – deflections with no gain; R – rebounds; PU – pickups; P – penalties; GPT – general play turnovers.
Australian Diamonds goal keeper Courtney Bruce is having a brilliant season and her stats demonstrate this. She leads the league for intercepts and is second for deflections to Geva Mentor. Less positively, Bruce also holds the record for the most penalties so far this year, an area she will need to clean up to avoid giving shooters undefended shots at goal.
Mentor, who won the inaugural league MVP last year, has followed this up with a strong start to the season, which includes 32 gains and the most defensive rebounds and deflections of any player.
Aside from these two players, it is difficult to single out goal keepers in what has been a quality season thus far. Laura Geitz is third equal with Bruce for rebounds and is extremely safe with the ball, with just one turnover to her name. Geitz has recorded nine defensive gains, second behind Mentor, having played one game less than everyone else.
Sarah Klau has also been a standout for the NSW Swifts with 28 gains including 14 intercepts and seven deflections with a gain. Sharni Layton has grown across the season, but one could say she is still not at her best. She has a very respectable 25 gains, with her penalties on par with most of the other goal keepers.
Suffice to say, there’s a lot to take out of statistics, and in particular the important role they play in detailing a players’ influence on a game. There has been much made of the first six rounds of Suncorp Super Netball 2018, let’s see how the rest of the season pans out.