Tag: Anna Harrison

Compare the Pair: Anna Harrison and Katrina Rore

THE next instalment in the Draft Central Compare the Pair series will aim to analyse two fan favourites from across the netball world, with the next showcasing New Zealand Silver Ferns defenders, Anna Harrison and Katrina Rore.

Both talented defenders in their own right, Harrison and Rore have a couple of things in common – namely their consistency and versatility. Both have an innate ability to have an impact in virtually any defensive position, able to fall back to goal keeper when required thanks to their respective wing span and read of the play, but also able to work up the court in goal defence and wing defence. This ability to impact both inside and outside the circle made the two players virtually unstoppable once they got going, both putting their body on the line for the game more times than not.

The creator of what many call the ‘Harrison Hoist’, Harrison was as innovative as they come when she took the court, using her crafty speed and deflection ability to in turn be a threatening option when faced with a challenge. Willing to bend the rules to switch up momentum at the drop of a hat, Harrison was a triple threat out in defence, applying constant pressure with the impressive three foot marking and hands over pressure, able to shadow her opposition with ease or leap for the intercept. Harrison was a threatening figure until the very end, retiring with plenty left in the tank thanks to her ability to command the game.

Rore plays with a similar energy to which Harrison did, making her a crucial defensive option on court thanks to her ability to come out firing consistently and with great excitement and speed. With impeccable netball nous and read of the play, Rore is a deceptively quick and clean player, able to have an impact in a short space of time credit to her constant vision both on and off the ball.

Her reliability allows her to have an impact in any position, with her long arms blocking vision and denying easy ball into the circle whether she is a circle defender or defending the feeder. An ex-captain of the Ferns, Rore’s leadership both on and off the court is impressive with her winning attitude and ability to drive the ball and game forward impeccable. Rore collected three trophies in 2019, winning the Netball World Cup title with New Zealand, along with domestic premierships in the ANZ Premiership with Central Pulse and Suncorp Super Netball with NSW Swifts.

Anna Harrison
88 caps, 2002-2017

Katrina Rore
137 caps*, 2008-present

Which Silver Ferns defender would you pick?
Anna Harrison
Katrina Rore
Created with Quiz Maker

Top 10 all-time New Zealand and Australian retired greats

IT is hard to narrow down just 10 players from both New Zealand and Australia that have had an everlasting impact on the game with both countries boasting players full of class, star-power and excitement. This list is purely opinion-based, taking into consideration longevity, international caps and perceived impact on-court.

#1 Irene Van Dyk – New Zealand (GS)

There is no denying that Van Dyk is arguably one of the world’s best goal shooters with her silky movement and sheer endurance. The netball superstar played 217 caps of which 74 were with South Africa, and the remainder with the Silver Ferns. Her cool, calm and collected nature steered her side to many victories, allowing her to quickly become one of Australia’s biggest nemeses under the post. She was simply unstoppable, able to turn a game on its head in a blink of an eye credit to her strong holds, perfect placement and most importantly, accuracy, hardly ever missing a shot.

#2 Laura Geitz – Australia (GK/GD)

The former Diamonds captain is nothing but class. All eyes would turn to her knowing something special would happen every time she took the court, credit to her physical presence, impeccable timing and general netball smarts to get around the body of an opponent or do the unthinkable just when her side needed it. She sensed the moment time and time again and was a real inspiration on court, consistently leading from the front and spurring her side on.

#3 Sharelle McMahon – Australia (GA/GS)

The Australian goaler was a true mastermind on the court, able to exploit the space with her dynamic movement. Her movement paired with her impressive accuracy proved to be hard to stop for opposition defenders trying to shut down the talented shooter. McMahon could singlehandedly jolt a side back into action with clever plays and silky connections, forging key partnerships in attack to provide a dangerous attack-line for the Diamonds.

#4 Liz Ellis – Australia (GK)

Ellis is one of the most influential goal keepers in Australian netball history with her attacking flair and willingness to take the game on. She controlled the airways with her intercepting abilities and used her height to swat away passes entering the circle. Ellis was one of a kind, renowned for her pressure over the shot, quick feet and cleanliness at the contest, reigning supreme over key opposition players again and again.

#5 Casey Kopua – New Zealand (GD/GK)

A true leader and inspiration on court, with her defensive prowess constantly on display. Kopua can light a game up with her match-winning style of play, able to take a huge intercept or force a turnover such is her imposing nature. Her competitive spirit and physical style of play turns heads along with her ability to read the play and gobble up any cross-court balls.

#6 Cath Cox – Australia (GS/GA)

She was a staple hold in the Diamonds uniform, playing in 108 tests thanks to her impressive endurance, class and accuracy. Cox was nothing short of consistent and reliable, able to shoot from anywhere in the circle and convert. Her footwork was effortless on the court, able to hold strong under the post or get off the body to find her own space.

#7 Anna Harrison – New Zealand (GD/GK/WD)

The lanky defender was renowned for her defensive antics, especially initiating the chair lift. Despite her slight stature she could impact the contest with ease to become a commanding presence in the defensive circle and would use her aerial skills to force turnovers, deflections and intercepts.

#8 Joline Henry – New Zealand (WD/GD)

She was a key cog in the Ferns defensive line-up, often blocking the wing attack’s drives and movements to the top of the circle. Her physical game style upset many attackers who struggled to combat the intense pressure and shadowing nature of her game play. Her hands over pressure was second to none blocking the vision of her opponents and forcing rushed passes or held balls.

#9 Kathryn Harby-Williams – Australia (GD/WD)

The talented Aussie defender was renowned for making her opponents’ lives hard with her imposing figure and skill to shut them down. She made it hard for the goalers to shoot and enter the circle with her smart movement across the court while applying a wealth of pressure out the front to block her opponents vision.

#10 Temepara Bailey – New Zealand (C/WA)

Bailey was a pocket rocket on court able to feed from all areas of the attacking third thanks to her impressive vision, strength and variety of passes to slice through the opposition defence. She was a real barometer through the midcourt, able to control the flow of the play and work her way through the pressure to deliver well-weighted passes into her goalers.

ANZ Premiership: Northern Mystics preview

WITH some promising new faces and a solid core of old hands, the Northern Mystics head into their third ANZ Premiership season with plenty to get excited about.

Having missed finals, finishing fourth last year, the Auckland-based team have a point to prove. While there were good moments throughout their 2018 campaign, the Mystics struggled at times to deliver consistent on court results.

The Mystics have big shoes to fill without the likes of dynamic defender Anna Harrison who retired and long-time shooter Maria Folau who has crossed the Tasman joining forces with the Adelaide Thunderbirds.

There is certainly a solid foundation to be built upon, with five players returning for another season in the blue and white. Versatile shooter Bailey Mes brings range and an impressive vertical leap, along with valuable international experience, and has previously combined well with creative midcourter Elisapeta Toeava and former Steel shooter Jamie Hume in the attacking end. Fresh from a Silver Ferns debut last year, young defender Michaela Sokolich-Beatson also looks set to continue raising her form over the coming season, her fourth with the Northern Mystics.

Having returned to the Mystics last year after stints with Steel and the Pulse, Phoenix Karaka will take up the mantle of captain for the coming season. An adaptable and experienced defender with a great all-round skillset, Karaka should prove an able replacement for Harrison in the leadership role.

Stepping onto the court alongside these five are a healthy dose of new blood. After four years on the Australian netball scene, Erena Mikaere has a lot to offer the Northern Mystics in 2019. Boasting serious height and reach, the experienced defender should be a real force on the court. Former rugby player, Emma Iversen could also prove to be a key signing for the Mystics. After playing with the Northern Stars, Iversen will be a good addition to the line-up credit to her athleticism and strong attacking play.

Schoolgirl turned Mystics player Tayla Earle beats the rest for versatility. Slipping from defence to midcourt more comfortably than her age might suggest Earle can play in a host of positions ranging from goal defence to wing attack. The New Zealand Secondary School Player of the Year will happily benefit from the wealth of experience that the Mystics have.

Suncorp Super Netball’s Kristina Brice has made the journey across the ditch signing on as an import for the Northern Mystics. Standing at 196cm, she towers above her teammates dominating in the goal circle credit to her height, strong holds and good positioning under the ring.

A fully-contracted Grace Kukutai takes the last place in this Mystics roster off the back of an impressive season in the training partner ranks. With a great work rate, the youngster still has plenty of development left in her and could turn out to be a real star of the future.

With only days to go until the opening round of the ANZ Premiership, the Northern Mystics are set for an explosive start to their season.