MATCH PREVIEW (R6): MAGIC v STARS
The Waikato-BOP Magic continue to build at the mid-way point of the ANZ Premiership with three wins after six rounds. It has been an injury-plagued first half to the season which has seen other squad members step up to fill the void. Defender Kate Lloyd has been relishing the court time alongside former Silver Ferns captain Casey Kopua and the duo caused plenty of problems for the Silvermoon Tactix’ shooters in a tense one-goal win at Super Sunday. The last time these two met was in Round 4 when the Magic beat the Stars 64-53 and while the latter is yet to register a win, they have pushed most of the teams in the Premiership hard to the final whistles. Stars captain Grace Kara said her side needed to train to win and now had to be careful not to let frustration seep into their game. The string of narrow defeats showed they are competitive in all areas but Kara said it was a proving a similar storyline each week of stumbling in key moments. “We need to be really committed to doing what we say we’re going to do,” she said. “We have the confidence; we just need to push through.”
WHO TO WATCH:
Monica Falkner (Magic) – has been steadily improving each week and took the pressure off Lenize Potgieter when needed last week. Showed strong drives into the circle and was not afraid to put up the shots at goal.
Ariana Cable-Dixon (Magic) versus Fa’amu Ioane (Stars) – Ioane has been a consistent performer for the Stars and will be out to shut down Cable-Dixon who has worked hard on her game in the new role of wing attack.
Kate Burley (Stars) – the defender has made the most of her opportunities having stepped up from the Beko Netball League and shared the goal defence role with Ama Agbeze last Sunday. Picked up two intercepts and three deflections in her 30 minutes on court against the Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel.