Western Sting 42 v Qld Fusion 48 Western Sting 53 v QLD Fusion 54
Tas Magpies 29 v Canberra GIANTS 52 Tas Magpies 52 v Canberra GIANTS 72
Vic Fury 62 v Netball NSW Waratahs 44 Vic Fury 72 v Netball NSW Waratahs 28
Southern Force 61 v Territory Storm 36 Southern Force 54 v Territory Storm 36
There was a relatively even playing field leading into the weekend, with most teams sitting on two wins, which saw all looking to get the edge with a few extra triumphs to their names.
With the 2016 grand final rematch and two games going back-to-back with Suncorp Super Netball matches, round three of the ANL was set to deliver.
Always a highly anticipated game on any fixture, in any code, is the grand final rematch. In this case, it was the Victorian Fury playing host to the Netball NSW Waratahs at the State Netball and Hockey Centre on Saturday and Sunday, that were the games to watch.
Game one saw a physical, high pressured game with good execution of skills from both sides. However, it was the defending champions, Victorian Fury, taking the win 62-44.
In her first season as Victorian Fury coach, Leesa Gallard was impressed by the teamwork of her girls.
“I was really pleased with the performance of the athletes who were out on court… We were really strong on our connections and we got the ball speed happening.”
Sunday’s game took on a different pace, with three Melbourne Vixens (Emma Ryde, Khao Watts and Kadie-Ann Dehaney) pulling on the bibs for the Fury.
“We really enjoyed them being there and it was a great team vibe; there was a lot of energy around those athletes being with us,” said Gallard.
“I think that performance and the margin in the end really showed quite a lot about the strength and the link between the Vixens and the Fury’s program… right from the get-go, there were some really strong connections on court.”
Fury again ended up on top, winning 72-28 ending a successful weekend and setting up the run home to the finals.
Over in the West, Netball WA’s Western Sting held their first home game for the 2017 ANL season, hosting Queensland Fusion at the Perth State Netball Centre.
Saturday’s game saw the Sting take control of the first half, up by four goals at the main break. The away side proved they were just too good though, taking the win 48-42.
Game two saw a thriller, with Fusion up by seven goals at three quarter time, before a final quarter Sting surge saw the home side claw their way back into the game, only to go down by one goal, 54-53.
The stage was set for a Saturday evening clash between the Tasmanian Magpies and Canberra GIANTS in front of a Hisense Arena crowd, ahead of the Suncorp Super Netball double header.
With a massive crowd cheering the future stars of SSN on, it was the Canberra GIANTS who claimed victory, winning 52-29.
A Sunday morning match at the State Netball and Hockey Centre in Melbourne, the Tasmanian Magpies were out to seek redemption against their visiting side.
Their quest for improvement wasn’t as successful as they’d hoped, going down to the GIANTS 52-72.
Yet to get a win on the board, Territory Storm made the trip to Adelaide to take on Southern Force, with game two to be played in front of the SSN crowd at Priceline Stadium.
The experience of the Force proved too good for the Storm, taking out both games, 61-36 and 54-36.
Photo: Getty Images
|QLD Fusion||NNSW Waratahs||Ormiston College, Brisbane||5.00pm|
|VIC Fury||Western Sting||Hisense Arena, Melbourne||5.00pm**|
|Territory Storm||Canberra GIANTS||University of the Sunshine Coast, Sunshine Coast||5.30pm**|
|Tas Magpies||Southern Force||Silverdome, Launceston||5.00pm|
|QLD Fusion||NNSW Waratahs||Ormiston College, Brisbane||11.00am|
|VIC Fury||Western Sting||Eagle Stadium, Werribee, Melbourne||12.00pm|
|Territory Storm||Canberra GIANTS||University of the Sunshine Coast, Sunshine Coast||10.00am|
|Tas Magpies||Southern Force||Silverdome, Launceston||10.00am|
** denotes pre or post a Suncorp Super Netball match.