GIANTS Netball went into the three-day Suncorp #TeamGirls Cup with a 12-player strong squad and the chance to test various combinations leading into the 2019 Suncorp Super Netball season. Each player took to the court and made their impact at various points throughout the tournament – with plenty of attention being paid to the exciting potential that lies ahead for the team.
The tournament was generally characterised by wide margins throughout the rounds and very close finals results. The former was the story in the GIANTS’ first match, which was against their state rivals the Swifts, with the Swift’s 15-goal win being a very atypical result for clashes between the Clubs. It was also the case in the GIANTS 40-28 win over West Coast Fever. The team’s third round 46-37 win against Collingwood Magpies Netball was a highlight of the tournament, with both teams playing hard in an exciting match that kept the crowd enthralled.
GIANTS Netball finished the tournament in 4th place, after a very close loss to Sunshine Coast Lightning in the second Final, recording two wins and two loses across the three days.
Future stars like Kiera Austin and Amy Parmenter impressed. With injured shooter Caitlin Bassett not with the team for the tournament, Austin stepped up and showed why she has caught the attention of Diamonds selectors, while Parmenter was fast and lethal in the midcourt, standing strong against seasoned players and showcasing great vision on passes.
Meanwhile, the ever-reliable Jo Harten and Kim Green led with determination and skill, once again being difference makers when needed. Harten was cool under pressure in the circle and her adaptability in shooting positions gave the GIANTS plenty of combinations to play with. Green stood out at WA, proving to be a tough opponent for all who came up against her.
On the defensive end, Kristiana Manu’a and Sam Poolman were the dynamic duo. The defenders played with heart and particularly shone in the second and third matches – forcing four held balls alone in one quarter of game two. New defender Matilda McDonell took to the court as both GD and WD and her long reach and tight defence challenged even the most experienced players. In the midcourt, Jamie-Lee Price played with her usual grit and passion, putting pressure on her rivals at every turn.
Each of the GIANTS Netball training partners – Toni Anderson, Maddie Hay, Georgia Marshall and Latika Tombs – took part in the tournament and their play and impact on court reinforced that the future of NSW netball is certainly bright.
Game 1: GIANTS Netball 33 v NSW Swifts 47
Game 2: GIANTS Netball 40 v West Coast Fever 28
Game 3: GIANTS Netball 46 v Magpies Netball 37
Final 2: GIANTS Netball 44 v Sunshine Coast Lightning 46