Vice-captain Gabi Simpson said having confidence in each other was a major factor in the Samsung Diamonds’ three-goal win over the Silver Ferns, in the opening Test of the Constellation Cup.
Simpson acknowledged that last time the two rivals met in the Netball Quad Series, the Silver Ferns were able to create a disconnect amongst the group.
“We need to have the confidence in each other so when we are put under pressure, we can stay calm and collected and be able to push the lead back out. We did that really well tonight,” Simpson explained.
“There was really great eye contact, and everyone was on the same page. We knew what we had to do together to get back on top of them.
“That’s something we have really been working on over the last three weeks, because we thought they disconnected us really well in that last game.”
Simpson said it was crucial to claim the victory in the first Test of the Constellation Cup and the group’s second win over the Silver Ferns for the year.
“It was really important for us to have that win. We wanted to build some confidence and show what we are capable of,” she said.
“We definitely didn’t play the most consistent netball that we could have, but we put out a performance that we are proud of.”
It was a hard-fought game with a margin as narrow as one-goal during the last quarter and Simpson said she expects the intensity to rise even further in upcoming three Tests.
“We know New Zealand will be hurting after this loss, so they will come out extremely strong and firing and they won’t take a backwards step,” she said.
“We need to be able to match that intensity and then take it to another level.”
The Diamonds will face the Silver Ferns in the second match of the 2017 Constellation Cup at 12.00pm AEDT Sunday 8 October. Watch live on Nine and the Netball Live app. Tickets are available for the third and fourth Tests in Adelaide and Sydney. Get tickets now.