Tag: West Coast Fever

Consistent Fever too good for new-look Thunderbirds

BOTH the West Coast Fever and Adelaide Thunderbirds came out flying in their first battle for the 2020 Suncorp Super Netball (SSN) season, with the Fever’s constant pressure down court paying off for an excellent 12-goal win to start the season on the ultimate high. 

The timing from Shamera Sterling was impressive from the get-go, holding Jhaniele Fowler with ease and seeing an early lead extended by the Thunderbirds. But some calmer ball movement from the Fever saw the away side settle better as the quarter went on, limiting ease of access to the ball for the Thunderbirds. Getting a few goals up took a bit of patience, but the Fever took it in their stride and took advantage of hurried ball movement down court. It took some time for both teams to work into the game, with errant passes flying but some good ball movement happening for both sides. 

Caught unmoving a couple times, young talent Sam Gooden was held well by Stacey Francis early on but gained in confidence, with the Fever defence limiting movement and forcing the ball to go to a well held Lenize Potgieter at the post. Courtney Bruce may not have kept Potgieter quiet, but her hands over pressure on Gooden proved influential. With a mostly even first quarter behind them, the first five-minute super shot period started with a bang thanks to Fowler shooting the first long bomb of the day, with the tall timber opening her bag of tricks and shooting at full accuracy early. Meanwhile, the Thunderbirds were unwilling to go long. The Fever had all the first quarter momentum after a slow start, leading 18-13 at the first change.

A couple of good ball wins from Jess Anstiss allowed the Fever to continue their control in the second, with the young gun providing a constant buffer at the first phase to turn over possession. Continuous confusion of the space by Bruce paid dividends, while the ball movement of Ingrid Colyer and Alice Teague-Neeld saw plenty of crucial ball going straight into Fowler at the post. Teague-Neeld’s improved confidence and intensity was mirrored by the evident development of young Adelaide midcourter Maisie Nankivell, who generated some great ball back in wing defence in the second quarter to keep the Thunderbirds in it. 

Charlee Hodges entered the court midway through the term to open up a bit more attacking movement for the Thunderbirds, though less than a minute later Sterling went down with an unsuspecting ankle injury to put a damper on the quarter as Kate Shimmin joined the fray. The height mismatch was clear from the get-go, opening up the long high ball to Fowler at the post, though fortunately Sterling was back not long after, yet not at her typical excitement-boosting form.

The physical matchup saw the two sides taking plenty of risks, with everything on the line and a couple of late challenges seeing plenty of players hit the floor. A couple of debutants took to the court credit to the rolling sub rule, with Georgie Horjus having an impact both on and off the ball in goal attack for the Thunderbirds, showing a good connection with Potgieter and unafraid of the contest. But the Tbirds went into the second half down by a hefty margin, not taking many long bombs and seeing the scoreline extend to 11, 38-27.

The second half started much the same, though the Thunderbirds grabbed a couple great opportunities to pull back to under 10 goals. Defensively, the Thunderbirds were not doing enough outside the circle to stop the ball from getting into Fowler but stayed in the game with Potgieter’s accuracy well and truly paying off and Gooden having an impact on the scoresheet with her long bomb accuracy. A lack of backup down the court saw nothing go the Thunderbirds’ way though, with the Fever maintaining much of the possession and continuing to dominate the contest. 

Young talent Sunday Aryang was quick to have an impact out in goal defence, using her long arms to deflect the ball and plying her trade well on the equally inexperienced Horjus and winning much of the outer circle battle. A couple super shots in a row for the Thunderbirds saw the lead reduce, though the defensive pressure from the Fever continued to mount to force errors. Scrappy physicality saw players from both sides hit the floor in the late stages of the third as the intensity lifted.

Down by just eight goals coming into the final quarter, a quick start from the Thunderbirds was required. While the attack of the Tbirds was on point, defensively they could not cope with the Fever’s confidence in Fowler. With just over six on the clock the Fever had once again extended their lead taking it out to 12 and the Thunderbirds needed to put up every single super shot opportunity offered to them in the final five minutes to narrow the margin. A couple impressive long bombs from Teague-Neeld and Gooden saw the young talent step up, but with the two going toe-to-toe the Thunderbirds were unable to pull back the margin. Fever ran away with an impressive 12-goal win (74-62) credit to a consistent effort across all four quarters, with a Fowler super shot sealing the deal.

Among the top performers were Potgieter (35 goals from 37 attempts, one super shot) with Gooden the main super shot contributor with nine from 10 while Fowler sunk 53 of a possible 57, sinking three super shots while Teague-Neeld was solid with 10 from 15 (four super shots). Eight Fever players racked up at least one gain showcasing the full court defence, with Bruce’s six a testament to her read of the play, while Colyer was second in line with three – all intercepts. Sterling’s four intercepts proved she would not slow down a bit despite her ankle niggle, while both Shadine van der Merwe and Nankivell racked up two intercepts apiece. On the assist, Teague-Neeld and Verity Charles led the way with 19 apiece.

>>> THUNDERBIRDS TEAM PAGE

>>> FEVER TEAM PAGE

>>> FULL MATCH STATS

ADELAIDE THUNDERBIRDS 13 | 14 | 18 | 17 (62)
WEST COAST FEVER 18 | 20 | 15 | 21 (74)

STARTING SEVEN

Adelaide Thunderbirds:

GS: Lenize Potgieter
GA: 
Samantha Gooden
WA: Chelsea Pitman
C: Hannah Petty
WD: Maisie Nankivell
GD: Shadine Van Der Merwe
GK: Shamera Sterling

West Coast Fever:

GS: Jhaniele Fowler
GA: 
Alice Teague-Neeld
WA: Ingrid Colyer
C: Verity Charles
WD: Jess Anstiss
GD: Stacey Francis
GK: Courtney Bruce

Draft Central’s free 2020 Suncorp Super Netball magazine

We are excited to announce our second Suncorp Super Netball magazine just in time for the season to begin. Faced with unprecedented times, Draft Central has worked hard to construct a magazine for netball lovers across the globe focusing on the 2020 SSN season and briefly recapping the 2019 action.

The magazine includes individual player profiles in each team as well as a list of training partners to ensure you can stay up to date with all the SSN news. You can find player features from Melbourne Vixens youngster Elle McDonald and Collingwood Magpies replacement player Molly Jovic inside, as well as the Draft Central team’s predictions for the season ahead.

If you are interested in being notified on further magazines please sign up below and don’t forget to join our Netball Draft Central group to join in the conversation.

If you are passionate about netball or multiple sports and wish to receive monthly EDMS of our most popular content, or even just when the next magazine drops, fill out the form below.

SSN 2020 update: Rule adjustments

WITH Round 1 of the Suncorp Super Netball (SSN) season just around the corner, some last minute rule adjustments have been made to the season to ensure player safety and wellbeing due to the condensed season. Committed to a full 60 game season over a shorter time frame with midweek games in the mix, the SSN is taking a cautious approach to protect the players and ensure player management.

The introduction of extra time was supposed to come into play this season as a result of a number of draws last season. However that rule has been scrapped for the 2020 season to accommodate for the heavier workload players will be faced with in the upcoming season. While it might not seem like a huge difference having to play an extra couple of minutes on top of their already top heavy schedule could have a major influence on player recovery.

“I think the ones (rules) that came out today don’t affect us too much from an on court perspective and planning for those games you know, as athletes and competitors, you want to get a result but I think the league has put it in, and it is a sensible decision, because we are going to be backing it up and playing a couple of games a week,” Melbourne Vixens co-captain, Kate Moloney told media on Tuesday.

The bonus point, while controversial when it was first brought in, has become a key part of the SSN competition but will not take effect this season in order to focus on player management. In the past many teams have kept their starting seven players on the court in hope to secure that elusive bonus point and give them a boost on the ladder. With the incentive not in place for the 2020 season it will hopefully encourage teams to rotate players instead of pushing players to win a bonus point in the dying seconds of the quarter.

Another key change ahead of the season is the introduction of extended benches meaning clubs can bring a full 10 member squad plus two additional players whether they be training partners or players outside of that scope as long as they fulfil the appropriate requirements. This rule change will allow teams to have more flexibility with players on court and seamlessly rotate when they see fit to guarantee each player can receive a sufficient amount of rest time. Furthermore the extra players can alternate from game to game depending on team needs giving the teams more flexibility.

“I think that’s going to be huge,” fellow co-captain, Liz Watson said. “We’re playing two games most weeks. So I think it’s a smart decision by the league to do this, and actually, it’s very sensible. It actually is giving players the opportunity to run off if they are feeling niggles or whatever it may be, and not actually pushing just that seven or 10 each game.”

The inclusion of two extra bench players allows young up and coming players to ply their trade at the elite level and gain some valuable minutes on court. With the Australian Netball League (ANL) not taking place this season, the opportunity could give some of the domestic league players a chance to step out on court and mix it with the best in the business which could be a huge positive in the long run.

 

SSN 2020: First six rounds of fixture revealed

FRIDAY morning saw the long awaited release of the first six rounds of the 2020 Suncorp Super Netball fixture, with the season beginning in just over a week on August 1. Rather than one round per week, the addition of mid-week matches will see these first six rounds play out across just 23 days.

While an announcement during the week stated that the entire season is expected to be played in Queensland, the first phase of fixturing will see NSW Swifts and GIANTS Netball remain in Sydney for the first three rounds with both West Coast Fever and Adelaide Thunderbirds joining the two New South Wales-based sides there. 

This round robin-style of fixturing will see the Queensland hub look much the same, with the first couple of rounds featuring the Queensland-based sides – Queensland Firebirds, Sunshine Coast Lightning, Melbourne Vixens and Collingwood Magpies – competing against each other.

The season will open on Saturday, August 1 with a Queensland derby between Firebirds and Lightning, seeing the GIANTS and Fever go head-to-head next, followed by Swifts versus Thunderbirds and finishing with a Melbourne derby between Vixens and Magpies, with the two teams’ last clash a huge semi-final last season.

The fixture also sees a couple of major changes, with weekday scheduling in the mix for the first time, seeing a couple of rounds with Tuesday and Wednesday evening matches. Fans will not have to wait long, with the first Wednesday fixture taking place only three days after Round 1 finishes, with a Sydney derby between Swifts and GIANTS on August 5.

Also up there in terms of quality clashes, fans will look forward to a Round 4 grand final rematch between Lightning and Swifts, while as of yet a fixture for the highly contested Sargeant-McKinnis Trophy will have to wait, with the Swifts and Vixens not playing one another in the first six rounds.

The statement also suggests there is potential for matches to play out in Perth and Adelaide later in the season, pending border restrictions. 

The next phase of fixturing is expected to drop in mid-August.

>> CHECK OUT THE FIRST SIX ROUNDS HERE

 

Team previews:

Adelaide Thunderbirds

Collingwood Magpies

GIANTS Netball

Melbourne Vixens

NSW Swifts

Queensland Firebirds

Sunshine Coast Lightning

West Coast Fever

Netball Draft Central: Volunteer writing opportunities

WITH Suncorp Super Netball around the corner the team at Netball Draft Central are looking for fresh faces to join the team. Already covering the ANZ Premiership this season, we are hoping to find volunteer writers who are interested in both competitions and have a passion for all things netball. 

In the past we have covered other leagues such as the Vitality Netball Superleague along with a host of Australian competitions such as the Australian Netball League (ANL), Victorian Netball League (VNL) and M-League, but have not been able to do so this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This diverse coverage of netball allows Draft Central to have a point of difference from many other netball news outlets catering specifically to netball fans across the globe. 

We are looking for minimum second year media/journalism students that have an interest in sport, particularly netball and are wanting to gain valuable experience with a dedicated team of writers. 

Writing skills, dedication, flexibility, and effective communication are all crucial characteristics to be a part of the Draft Central team. While writing experience is preferable it is not a necessity for this role.

If you are interested, please email Sophie Taylor at sophie.t@rookieme.com

Suncorp Super Netball returns to court on August 1

AUSTRALIA’S top netball competition returns August 1.

In a massive announcement by the Suncorp Super Netball today, fans of the world’s top ranked league will have to wait just two months until they see their favourite stars out on court again. The other two major leagues in the world – the ANZ Premiership and Vitality Netball Superleague (VNSL) – had both made decisions on their returns in the past two weeks. While the VNSL opted to cancel the season citing concerns around the COVID-19 pandemic, the ANZ Premiership will return on Friday, June 19.

The 2020 Suncorp Super Netball season will be a full 60-game season – which means 14 rounds where teams face off against the other seven teams twice – as well as the four-game finals series for the top four sides. The fixture is yet to be announced, but the timing of the announcement today – May 31 – is for clubs to train together from tomorrow – June 1 – whilst sticking to social distancing guidelines.

Suncorp Super Netball CEO Chris Symington said in the release on the Suncorp Super Netball website that the season start represents a significant step forward on the road to getting back on court.

“We’re thrilled that a season start date has been locked away, now all our stakeholders have a date to work towards and fans can start to get excited for the start of the season,” he said. “We are planning to play out a full home and away season, and we are confident that our start date gives us the best opportunity to achieve that.

“Our guiding principles throughout this process have never changed, those being the health and wellbeing of the community alongside the financial viability of our sport. “There has been a collective commitment to those principles from the whole system including players, teams, partners and broadcasters and we will continue to take that approach as we look to get our season underway.

“I would like to thank our dedicated members and fans who have stuck by their teams and the sport through an incredibly challenging period. We look forward to showcasing our world class athletes once again from August 1.”

For full player profiles on each Suncorp Super Netball team, check out our team pages:

Adelaide Thunderbirds | Collingwood Magpies | GIANTS Netball | Melbourne Vixens | NSW Swifts | Queensland Firebirds | Sunshine Coast Lightning | West Coast Fever


Furthermore, the 2020 Constellation Cup between the Australian Diamonds and New Zealand Silver Ferns will take place later this year, whilst the 2020 Quad Series that was meant to take place between the world’s top two nations, as well as England and South Africa, has been cancelled due to the impact of COVID-19 on international travel.

Top 20 players over 30: #20 Stacey Francis

THERE are a host of international players across the world that, much like a fine wine, have simply gotten better with age. With netball on hold due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Draft Central takes a look at players that fall into the category of over 30 and still have plenty in the tank given their on-court prowess. Kickstarting the countdown at number 20 is West Coast Fever and England Roses defender, Stacey Francis.

Francis has been a staple hold in the Fever defence line-up since their inception with her aerial ability and physicality a couple of her characteristics. She is not afraid to use her body work to get under the skin of her opponents and while she is not the tallest defender it is her speed and skill to read the play that makes her one to watch. The 32-year-old is electric on her feet able to cover the court with ease and can rotate through the defensive positions with ease. While goal defence is her preferred position, Francis has shown that she is more than capable of playing her role in wing defence with her nagging style of defence and nous to block her opposition’s space and vision.

She has shown no signs of slowing down leaving her mark in the England Roses team with her constant hands over pressure and desperation to have a flying shot at anything that goes past her. Francis is light on her feet able to burst out of the blocks and gobble up the cross-court ball. Standing at 180cm Francis uses every inch of her height to cause turnovers and create tips across the court while her tenacity to chase down the loose ball also makes her an integral member in any side.

Her combination with Fever teammate and Australian goal keeper Courtney Bruce is highly impressive, with the two able to rotate through the space and cause confusion with their high intensity and general netball smarts. Her connection with fellow West Coast teammates such as Shannon Eagland and Olivia Lewis is also strong with the defender using her experience to dictate space and create a calming presence down back. She is agile but most importantly is strong, not often out-bodied by opponents especially around circle edge Francis can have a profound impact in disrupting the attacking flow and creating issues for opposition teams trying to push forward. Francis uses her balance and quick footwork to dance around her opponent and while she is towards the twilight of her career has shown that she still has a few tricks up her sleeve.

TOP 20 PLAYERS OVER 30:

#20 Stacey Francis (West Coast Fever/England)

Netball fantasy teams: West Coast Fever All-Stars v. Adelaide Thunderbirds All-Stars

THE West Coast Fever and Adelaide Thunderbirds have a highly decorated history with both clubs boasting a long line of a-class players since their inception. Draft Central has comprised two All-Star teams filled with past and present players.

West Coast Fever:

GK: Courtney Bruce
GD: Eboni Usoro-Brown
WD: Ash Brazill
C: Shae Brown
WA: Madi Browne
GA: Nat Medhurst
GS: Caitlin Bassett

BENCH: Jhaniele Fowler, Stacey Marinkovich, Ama Agbeze

Although they have not tasted a lot of success throughout their time in both the ANZ Championship and Suncorp Super Netball, the West Coast Fever has been home to a wealth of highly talented netballers both from an Australian and international perspective. When it comes to the goal circle the Fever have been littered with stars none bigger than Australian Diamonds captain, Caitlin Bassett. The towering goal shooter really made a name for herself under the post for the Fever with her strong holds, lanky arms and volume. Her connection with teammate and fellow former Diamond Nat Medhurst was near on unstoppable. Medhurst was the real playmaker inside the attacking third with her impressive balance, vision and ability to think two steps ahead of her opponents. While she did not put up a high amount of goals it was her off the ball work that made her such a damaging player.

Moving into wing attack is Madi Browne. The speedy centre court player oozes strength and excellent ball handling skills to deliver the ball with precision to the goalers. Shae Brown was a key contributor for the Fever, spending almost ten years at the club using her energiser bunny speed to dart around the court and cause havoc. The centre proved that she could run all day and was not afraid to put in the hard yards taking the strong drive to the top of the goal circle. It is no surprise that wing defence come centre Ash Brazill gets the start in the All-Star Fever team given her sheer athleticism, speed off the mark and ability to make something out of nothing. Brazill quickly developed into one of the most influential players with her defensive pressure constantly on show and desperation to attack the ball.

Down in defence is England Roses goal defence Eboni Usoro-Brown who is renowned for her body on body pressure, physicality under the post and ability to pick off intercepts. She is light on her feet and uses her long arms to cause confusion for the feeders looking into the circle. Current captain and Diamonds keeper, Courtney Bruce takes out the goal keeper position thanks to her tenacity and impressive leap. She does not take a backwards step on the court, consistently looking to take on the physical tussle and use her quick footwork to get around the body of her opponents and force tips and turnovers.

Rounding out the team is Jamaican shooting powerhouse Jhaniele Fowler along with former England Roses captain Ama Agbeze, while coach and former midcourter Stacey Marinkovich also earned herself a spot on the All-Star team.

Adelaide Thunderbirds:

GK: Sharni Layton
GD: Mo’onia Gerrard
WD: Renae Ingles
C: Natalie Bode (nee von Bertouch)
WA: Chelsea Pitman
GA: Erin Bell
GS: Maria Folau

BENCH: Carla Borrego, Maddy Proud, Rebecca Bulley

Over the years the Adelaide Thunderbirds have added to their trophy cabinet and experienced their fair share of success. With that success has come some highly talented players filtering through the club such as former Australian goal keeper Sharni Layton. She was one of the most dynamic and physical defenders in the game, renowned for her constant niggle and innate ability to go screaming out for an intercept. Her constant movement, hands over pressure and sheer pressure was a focal point of her game much like her defensive counterpart Mo’onia Gerrard. The goal defence was strong both in the air and at ground level, hustling for every ball that came her way and not giving her opponent an inch. Gerrard used her speed off the mark to force turnovers and apply pressure.

In at wing defence is none other than Renae Ingles. Arguably one of the most profound and impactful wing defences in the competition Ingles was the heart and soul of the Thunderbirds for many years, thanks to her on-court leadership and netball nous. Her go-get it attitude, long reaching arms and innate ability to sense the moment and make something special happen was second to none. Another former captain in Natalie Bode takes out the centre position with the dynamic midcourter able to run all day and ply her trade across the court. Her precision ball placement, strength around the goal circle and impressive vision made her hard to stop when on song. While in wing attack is England Roses and current Thunderbirds co-captain Chelsea Pitman. She is a smooth mover, that boasts plenty of class with ball in hand and a high level of execution.

The goal circle is full of long bomb specialists with yet another former T’birds captain and Australian Diamonds shooter, Erin Bell taking out the goal attack position. Her high release sky-scraper shots, silky movement across the court and cool, calm temperament was a key reason to their success. She was not afraid to back herself from range and showcased her spatial awareness every time she was on court. While she only spent one season with the Thunderbirds, Maria Folau had an undeniable impact in the goal circle with the long bomb specialist well and truly living up to her name. Her effortless shooting action and accuracy to post proved to be the key for the Thunderbirds throughout the 2019 season.

On the bench and unlucky not to get a start is defender Rebecca Bulley, renowned for her tagging style of play, while former basketballer Carla Borrego and fan favourite Maddy Proud both also got the call up.

Who would win?

Although the Adelaide Thunderbirds have won more premierships than the West Coast Fever throughout history, it is hard to go past the quality talent on the list. The Fever probably have the upper hand when it comes to goalers with the likes of Fowler, Medhurst and Bassett all at their disposal. Defensively both teams are stacked but the scales tilt towards the Fever given their extra depth.

Who wins this All-Star battle of the West and South?
West Coast Fever
Adelaide Thunderbirds
Created with Poll Maker

Top 15 SSN training partners: #10 – Sunday Aryang

WITH a number of netball leagues across the world being suspended due to COVID-19, the Draft Central team is making a case for the top 15 training partners stepping up to the Suncorp Super Netball plate in 2020. Heading up the top 10 is 2019 West Coast Fever debutant Sunday Aryang. This countdown is purely opinion-based, taking into consideration recent form, individual potential and future development.

Ethiopia-born Aryang may be young but what she lacks in age she well and truly makes up for in talent, with impressive speed and elevation. The defender can be a threat both inside and outside the circle with her lanky arms and ability to cover ground, able to apply impressive pressure on the shot or deny entry to the circle depending on what her team needs. Aryang may not have a wealth of experience at the top level, but training behind Australian Diamonds goal keeper Courtney Bruce and against the likes of 198cm Jamaican Jhaniele Fowler in the circle, her development with this Fever unit will be crucial. 

Fellow West Australian pathway athlete Olivia Lewis is a handy player to follow the footsteps of, with the fellow defender earning her place on the bench and a playing a crucial role in helping Aryang up through the ranks. Aryang is a key member of the Western Sting side playing in the Australian Netball League (ANL) and a member of the 2019 Under-19 Australian squad. With clean hands and good anticipation of the play, Aryang is a great defensive prospect for the future, while her versatility will come in handy throughout her development with plenty of rotational options giving her plenty of opportunity to gain valuable court time.

TOP 15 SSN TRAINING PARTNERS SO FAR:

#15 Ashlee Unie (Sunshine Coast Lightning)
#14 Ruby Barkmeyer (Melbourne Vixens)
#13 Tippah Dwan (Queensland Firebirds)
#12 Matisse Letherbarrow (GIANTS Netball)
#11 Chelsea Blackman (Adelaide Thunderbirds)
#10 Sunday Aryang (West Coast Fever)

Anstiss rising to the top for West Coast Fever

WITH netball on hold due to the COVID-19 outbreak we take a look back at our interview with up and coming midcourt star Jess Anstiss which appeared in our inaugural magazine.

The fire still burns for West Coast Fever midcourter, Jess Anstiss after narrowly falling to the Sunshine Coast Lightning in the Suncorp Super Netball grand final last year. The Fever had an outstanding 2018 season rocketing up the ladder after an average 2017 campaign. West Coast were arguably the most dominant team with their accuracy to post, clinical defence and physicality across the court an integral part of their game plan.

Anstiss was a key cog in their finals assault with her defensive work around the circle second to none clogging up the attack end of her opposition. Standing at 171cm the tenacious wing defence is not one to shy away from a fight with her fierce and competitive attitude a key feature of her game.

“I’m a very competitive person so I do really like the competition aspect to it and when you win that feeling and doing it with nine other girls out on court yeah I really enjoy the relationships that you build,” she said.

2018 brought many memorable moments with Anstiss describing the surreal feeling of stepping out onto her home court with the crowd behind her.

“I’ve never really experienced too many grand finals in the past. WA has never really gotten that far and the atmosphere especially playing at RAC Arena was amazing in front of the home crowd. I guess the nerves are different to what just a normal game is and the lead up in the week is all very different but in the end of the day it was a normal game but the hype around it was insane,” she said.

Though her side made it to the big dance they fell agonisingly short and with the memories of the loss still fresh in the mind for the midcourter, she is hoping to make amends come season 2019.

“I guess we are going to try and use that grand final loss in a positive way this year and use it as fire in the belly and really come out. Throughout the pre-season it has been a really big driver for us to go that extra little bit so that we can try and win the grand final this season. It is hard to try and back up such a good season but I know this pre-season has been harder than last and yeah we seem to be stepping forward in the right direction I think,” she said.

The West Coast Fever have maintained a settle line up with the likes of bookends Courtney Bruce and star Jamaican shooter Jhaniele Fowler signing on. Both players offer a great lot of character to the club on and off the court, with Fowler renowned for her relaxed nature, and captain Bruce using her fire to spur the team on.

“Jhaniele is amazing to play with. She’ll catch any ball that you put up and make your pass look good which is great for us centre court. But she also brings character to our team as well, she’s a quiet little assassin back in the shooting. But she brings lots of smiles and confidence to the whole team,” she said.

“Yeah Courts, loves to show her emotion I guess and that’s how she gets firing… she’s our captain so we look up to her and she gets out there and leads by example and comes out and takes those amazing intercepts. So we love Courto for the way that she shows her emotion and the smiles at the umpires make me laugh sometimes,” she said.

Since her introduction at the club Head Coach Stacy Marinkovich, has done wonders for the Fever providing plenty of experience and netball knowledge having played at the highest level for many years.

“Stacy has been an amazing coach for me especially she just seems to be able to bring the team together and works individually with athletes and knows exactly how to give feedback to individuals which is something not all coaches have the ability to do. So yeah she’s been great for the club and is a real big reason behind all of our success,” she said.

Given her dominant season for the Fever with her quick feet, hands over pressure and drive across the court Anstiss was rewarded for her hard work earning Australian selection.

“Yeah it was amazing to be selected into the squad last year. Something that I’ve dreamed of ever since I was a little kid. Yeah to be named amongst some of the best athletes in Australia it was a real honour,” she said.

But the accolades did not stop there for the humble wing defence taking out the Suncorp Super Netball Young Star award and Fever Best and Fairest award in her debut season. Anstiss ended the season with 12 intercepts, 31 deflections and 88 feeds showcasing her work both in defence and attack to provide that last pass into the goal circle.

“Yeah that was a big surprise, I didn’t think that was coming. But I guess individual awards are great but that wouldn’t come without the team playing around me, so I don’t really like getting them,” she said.

But before making it to the grand final and representing her country, Anstiss’ netball journey started at a young age following in the footsteps of her mother.

“I always grew up watching my mum play netball and then I guess it was just a natural thing to go into in primary school. Then mum coached me all throughout primary school and high school. So I guess watching her growing up made me want to play and be like her,” she said.

Anstiss did not always play through the midcourt, with the 22-year-old playing in goal attack for many years through her early stages before making the switch given her shorter stature. Swapping bibs did not seem to hinder the development of the talented netballer who has highlighted her versatility to swing between wing attack, centre and wing defence modelling the likes of New Zealand netball royalty, Laura Langman who has an impressive 151 caps to her name.

“The most prominent that I guess I still even look up to is Laura Langman. But in terms of Australians Nat von Bertouch was another one that I absolutely loved watching,” she said.

“I guess with Laura Langman it is her absolute doggedness and ability to both attack and defend and I guess Laura’s ability to read the play and same with Nat von Bertouch. I guess she was a more attacker player but just the way she knew exactly where to be at the right time,” she said.