NSW derby farewells Anne Clark Centre

NSW Waratahs vs Canberra DartersTonight is an historic occasion for netball in New South Wales with the state’s `spiritual home’ the Anne Clark Centre preparing to host its final Australian Netball League match.

It’s fitting that the last game played at the famous venue before Netball NSW moves to Netball Central – its new multi-million dollar Centre of Excellence facility at Sydney’s Olympic Park – in 2015 will be the local derby between the Netball NSW Waratahs and Netball NSW Blues.

It’s the last match of Round 6 action with the Waratahs looking to move inside the top four with a win while the Blues will be keen to end their season on a high.

It’s the Blues’ final match of the 2014 season and coach Briony Akle said their results this season have encouraged her to know her side will be more than capable of matching it with their opponents tonight.

“We go into (this) game knowing we can perform at the highest level against these really good teams and individually good players,” Akle told Netball NSW’s website.

“Before, we would’ve been a bit star struck. But we’ve now got the confidence to go out there and know we can play against our own and perform well.”

NSW Blues vs Tassie SpiritWaratahs coach Anita Keelan knows her team can’t take the improving Blues lightly as they look to stay in touch with the top four.

“The NNSW Blues are a really exciting team,” Keelan said. “They are not only a young side, but a very talented one. They are getting better with every game and connecting really well.

“(This game) is really crucial to us, so we’ll be coming out firing to claim those two points and hopefully take that momentum into Week 7 when we face the two Victorian teams.”

The Blues sit in seventh spot on the ladder but Akle has been delighted by the development her side has shown over the last few months.

“I’ve just loved every bit of the role,” she said.

“I’ve probably loved it because we’ve gotten better every week. Even though we haven’t won a lot of games on the scoreboard, I think … these girls can walk away knowing they’ve had a really good campaign.”

Tonight’s match gets underway at 7pm. The Waratahs will be in action in the final round of the season this weekend at Melbourne’s Waverley Netball Centre.

Photos: Courtesy of SMP Images

Australian Netball League Ladder

1 Victorian Fury 7 7 0 0 436 266 14 163.91
2 Queensland Fusion 7 6 1 0 464 369 12 125.75
3 Victorian Flames* 7 5 2 0 315 247 10 127.53
4 Western Sting 7 5 2 0 381 317 10 120.19
5 NSW Waratahs 6 4 2 0 429 267 8 160.67
6 Southern Force* 7 4 3 0 332 294 8 112.93
7 NSW Blues 8 2 6 0 386 430 4 89.77
8 Tassie Spirit 7 2 5 0 301 402 4 74.88
9 Canberra Darters 9 1 8 0 346 562 2 61.57
10 Territory Storm 7 0 7 0 233 469 0 49.68


* The result of the Round 3 match between Victorian Flames and Southern Force has been overturned by the Competition Appeals Committee following a breach to a clause of the competition rules. The Flames have been awarded the victory.