Adelaide Thunderbirds equalled the ANZ Championship record for the most consecutive wins in the highlight of Round 2 action.
Their 55-48 win over Queensland Firebirds in last Sunday’s Grand Final rematch in Brisbane was their 15th straight victory, equalling the previous record held by the Firebirds which they set back in 2011.
A win for Adelaide over the NSW Swifts next Monday night would see the Thunderbirds establish a new league record of 16 consecutive victories. That will be the Thunderbirds first home game of 2014.
The Thunderbirds started slowly before working their way back after half-time to win what was a true test of character.
Their ability to contain goal shooter Romelda Aiken’s impact, especially during the second half was a great advertisement for a new-look defensive line featuring the likes of Kate Shimmin, Samantha Poolman and Andrea Gilmore.
The defending champions were able to absorb the pressure applied by Firebirds and carve out the win.
“We were talking a lot about playing our sixty minute game plan and once again we were able to do that,” Thunderbirds captain Renae Hallinan said.
“Probably not the start in the first half that we wanted, but really proud of the girls to be able to dig deep and come back (to) get a win against a quality side like the Firebirds.”
The Melbourne Vixens continued their perfect start to the season with a dominating 65-56 win over West Coast Fever in Perth.
In a true showcase of their all-round abilities, the Vixens were in total control for three quarters before resting goal shooter Karyn Bailey and defender Geva Mentor for the final stanza.
Despite Fever winning the final quarter 19-11, it wasn’t enough as the damage had already been done.
In their first of two trips across the Tasman for 2014, the NSW Swifts travelled to Christchurch to play Mainland Tactix.
The Swifts were forced to work hard for their 68-57 win against a very much improved Tactix team.
The win came without midcourter Paige Hadley (knee) and defender Sharni Layton, who was a late withdrawal with an injured thumb.
Hadley’s absence provided an opportunity for first-year Swift Brooke Miller to make her ANZ Championship debut.
Last Sunday’s win was the first time since 2011 that the Swifts have won three consecutive matches.