After losing 60-44 to Fury in Melbourne on Saturday night, the Waratahs turned the tables in style at Hisense Arena on Sunday afternoon and the 50-41 result was Fury’s first defeat in the competition since 2012.
Fury were fast out of the blocks racing to a 6-2 early lead. But the Waratahs, who opted not to use any NSW Swifts players, were inspired by captain Taylah Davies, who was dynamic in the first half.
Formidable defence from the Waratahs was the backbone of their triumph along with shooter Georgia Marshall, who scored 40 goals for the match.
“We were just focusing on fixing up our game (from Saturday night). We had to get our basics right and we did that,” Akle said.
“(Saturday night) taught us a lot of lessons – that we had to go back and do the hard work and obviously with only 24 hours turnaround I was really proud of the girls to come out and nail it.
“It’s a positive that we can turn our game around from losing by 16 on the first day to having a victory on the second day, so for us that was thrilling.”
In an action-packed weekend, Southern Force were too good in their first outing for the year, defeating the Canberra Darters in both games of the weekend in the nation’s capital.
Force shooter Kristina Brice (pictured below), who had to score 31 goals over the weekend to take the league’s all-time scoring record, did just that to overtake Kathleen Knott as the ANL’s most prolific goal scorer.
The Force, who took the opportunity of the Adelaide Thunderbirds’ bye round to use their younger players to boost their team.
The team didn’t miss a beat, improving throughout the two days, winning 50–38 in the first game and 61–33 in the second.
In Perth, the Western Sting and QLD Fusion split their matches. Sting played their first game of the season bolstered by West Coast Fever players Kate Beveridge, Kaylia Stanton, Erena Mikaere and Ingrid Colyer.
Stanton and Beveridge proved valuable, scoring 26 and 20 respectively to guide the team home to a hard-fought 49-47 victory.
However it was a different story for the second game with the Sting missing their ANZ Championship players while the Fusion called on Queensland Firebirds athletes and there was a complete turnaround in the result with the visitors dominating the entire game to win by 51–41.
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Pictures courtesy of David Callow and Ben Southall