Expect the unexpected says Alexander

(Getty Images)

Coach Lisa Alexander has warned fans to expect the unexpected in tonight’s second Netball Quad Series Test against South Africa, at Canberra’s AIS Arena.

The coach gave court time to nine of the 12 Samsung Diamonds team during the first Netball Quad Series hit-out against England.

“We’ve got a really strong 12 and I’m confident in all of them, I think it’s one of the strongest 12s we’ve put together,” Alexander said.

“It’s exciting, and to see them out on court and what they can do, everyone will be given an opportunity at some stage and they have to take it.”

Co-vice captain Gabi Simpson says the group are ready to hit the court at AIS Arena and are expecting a tough contest against South Africa.

“We’re really excited to get out and play. Yesterday we had to have a little bit more intensity in our hit out to make sure we are ready,” Simpson said.

“South Africa bring a lot of flair and unpredictability to their game, they have some really phenomenally athletic players.

“We are working really hard to try and come up with a strategy that we can really shut that down.”

Alexander insists there is room for improvement, despite the Diamonds taking a four-goal win over England in the series opener.

“The second half against England showed that we let the opposition on top of us, particularly in that third quarter,” Alexander said.

“I think we got turnover ball that we just didn’t reward in that second half, so we’re really going to look to improve that area.”

Alexander says she feels as though she is at home playing in Canberra, and can’t wait to delight a stadium filled with green and gold stadium.

“We love being in our nation’s capital. It’s our home, it’s our national training centre, so I do really feel like we are at home now,” Alexander explained.

“We can’t wait to put on a really good performance tonight for all of our Canberra netball fans.”

The Diamonds host the South Africa SPAR Proteas at AIS Arena at 7.30pm AEST Wednesday 30 August. Tickets available via Ticketek or watch live on 9Gem and the Netball Live app.