Australian coach Lisa Alexander has warned that the Diamonds haven’t hit their straps yet ahead of tomorrow’s Netball World Cup SYDNEY 2015 final against the Silver Ferns at Allphones Arena.
Alexander declared in the post match press conference following the Diamonds 67-56 victory over Jamaica on Saturday that “we’ve got some more improvement there for tomorrow.”
The Diamonds booked their berth in the Grand Final with a hard fought and physically bruising encounter against the Sunshine Girls in front of a world record crowd of 16,244 fans.
The win sets up a rematch against the Silver Ferns – one week after New Zealand ended Australia’s 21-game winning streak.
The defeat provided the hosts a reality check and a much-anticipated rematch with their traditional rivals.
“We have to make sure that we cope with the midcourt zone better. I think we will, we’ve got plans in place for that because we’ve been working on it all week,” Alexander said.
“Also our defensive effort has to be there for the first phase ball and that’s not easy but we have to have that level of urgency and intensity in our attitude and I think a World Cup final will bring that.”
Alexander is wary of the settled Silver Ferns but confident her side can bounce back.
“We’re very confident, not over confident, we know that the Silver Ferns have really improved and their go-to team that’s been out there is looking good but we need to make sure that we sustain our performance for the 60 minutes or extra,” Alexander said.
“We have to be mentally tough and we’ve got to take all of the opportunities that come our way and score.”
Diamonds shooter Caitlin Bassett described the victory as “another step” towards the grand final effort.
Bassett, who finished with an equal career best 49 goals from 51 attempts, returned to the Australian starting seven and relished the opportunity.
“I really enjoyed it out on court, I think the ball was coming down nice and fast and the play out in front of me made it really open and easy,” Bassett said.
“I think it was a fantastic game and we have taken another step. Obviously tomorrow we’ll have to take another step yet again.”
The Gold Medal Match of the Netball World Cup SYDNEY 2015 will be broadcast live on FOX SPORTS and Network TEN at 3.00pm (AEST). Check your local guide for details.