Super Netball – Last Game for Outgoing Coach Lisa Alexander. Diamonds 66, All Stars 53.

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A generational change is well underway in Super Netball with Diamonds Coach Lisa Alexander coaching her last game in the Bushfire Charity Game on Sunday the 1st of March. It was also the last game for the Diamonds for Caitlin Thwaites. Although Alexander’s contract was not renewed, she is held in high regard by many in the sport with an 81% win rate. The players in particular had great respect for her as a coach.

Here’s the full story.

‘A really special lady’: emotions high as Diamonds farewell Alexander

Diamonds coach Lisa Alexander has walked away from the game she helped cement as a major player on Australia’s sporting landscape after coaching the national side for the final time.

There were emotional scenes at the end of Sunday’s bushfire charity game, with Caitlin Thwaites reduced to tears afterwards while talking about Alexander’s exit after eight years at the helm.

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Outgoing Diamonds coach Lisa Alexander and Caitlin Thwaites embrace after Australia’s 66-53 win over the Super Netball All Stars

“She is a really special lady, and I get emotional even thinking about it. She has done so much for each individual but also for the sport,” Thwaites said. “I don’t think we’ve seen the last of her. She has taken our sport to an entire new level. The world of netball has benefited from her being in that position.”

Alexander’s contract was not renewed after the Diamonds lost the World Cup final 52-51 to New Zealand last July, which came after they fell to England at the 2018 Commonwealth Games by the same scoreline.

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Alexander said any of the Super Netball coaches were qualified to take the reins – but but advised her successor to run their own show and be true to themselves.

“They do need to understand the extra responsibility you have when you’re a national coach,” Alexander said. “It’s not just about technical and tactical coaching; you’ve got to be a spiritual leader of your country’s netball and hopefully I’ve done that.”

With Alexander’s Diamonds dominating 66-53 over the Super Netball All-Stars at Qudos Bank Arena, questions were asked again about why Alexander was dumped from the post.

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“I don’t think that the players had lost faith in her,” Thwaites said. “We pride ourselves at being the absolute best and we’ve lost two of the major benchmark events – but in saying that, they were by one goal.”

Alexander retires with an 81 per cent win rate, but her record was just one part of why she was held in such high regard as a coach.

“I don’t think she gets acknowledged for half of the things that she actually does behind the scenes, the things that she fights for the player, in terms of their rights,” Thwaites said. “It’s a really huge job and they’re really huge shoes somebody has to fill.”

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The game also marked Thwaites’ final appearance for the Diamonds. She announced her retirement late last year after thriving under the leadership of Alexander after making her national debut in 2012.

Thwaites was warmly welcomed by the crowd of 11,067, who cheered every time she touched the ball.

“This one for me was bonus time,” she said. “For me, it was about getting out there and enjoying it, it is not every day you get to wear this dress.”

The match gave fans a taste of the rolling substitutions which will be a feature of the game for this year’s Super Netball Season. The charity match also included a ‘Super Shot’ which gave two points for shooting from the outer portion of the goal circle.

The Diamonds took the lead early, with the starting combination of Caitlin Bassett and Courtney Bruce pushing the score to 21-13 after the first quarter. By half-time, both sides had gotten the hang of the Super Shot and pushed the score to 42-24.

Giants star Jo Harten showed why she was announced as her club’s captain for 2020, but her second-half energy was not enough to beat the Diamonds, who refused to let their long-standing coach go out with a loss.

Source: theage.com.au

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Nellakir are strong supporters of Netball with their current major project being the completion of 11 new competition courts at the Victorian Netball and Hockey Centre in Royal Park. Work has commenced, with the courts all requiring stump systems from ASF Horner. Nellakir are the exclusive agent in Victoria and Tasmania for such high level professional Timber Sports Flooring from ASF Horner.

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Some of the Nellakir Courts at the Victorian State Netball Hockey Centre

Construction, Installation, annual maintenance (including recoating and relining) and scheduled professional cleaning of all Timber Sports Flooring – Call Nellakir for a free, no-obligation consultation on 03 9467 6126 or leave your details here for a prompt reply.

For a truly professional finish, always rely on Nellakir the Timber Sports Flooring specialists and leading experts in Victoria and Tasmania.

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

 

The Constellation Cup – Australia defeats New Zealand for the seventh year.

The Kiwis just missed. Australia won the Constellation Cup series in Perth. With both teams taking 2 wins it came down to percentage.

Netball has long been the most popular sport for women and girls in Australia. There was a time when in the winter the boys would play football and the girls would play netball.  That’s just how it was.  However, these days, there are many more sports to choose from and girls are venturing into previously male dominated sports.  But, netball still has a very high participation level, with over 37% of girls aged 6-13 playing netball.

Accordingly, this high level of participation and a strong grassroots organisation has put the Australian women’s team (The Diamonds) at the top of the world rankings for many years.  Taking out numerous Commonwealth Games and World Cup Gold Medals.

The most popular national sport in Australia is Cricket, in which Australians are very successful at. There are two major football codes Rugby League played predominantly in New South Wales and Queensland, and Aussie Rules popular in Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and Western Australia. Rugby Union and Association Football (known mostly as Soccer) is also played. The most popular female sport is Netball.

And we pay due homage to the all conquering Diamonds who simply blitzed the Silver Ferns in the final game of the series in Perth.

Kiwi coach slams refereeing as Diamonds win Constellation Cup

New Zealand coach Noeline Taurua has launched an extraordinary spray at Singaporean referee Joan Yuliani after the Australian Diamonds retained the Constellation Cup with a 53-46 netball win in Perth.

The Diamonds blitzed the Silver Ferns with a 16-7 opening-quarter onslaught at RAC Arena on Sunday, and led by as many as 16 goals during the second term as their suffocating pressure proved too much to handle.

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Noeline Taurua was not happy with the officiating in the fourth Test

But with star shooter Maria Folau nailing almost everything that came her way, the Silver Ferns reduced the margin to seven goals in the third quarter, and then just four goals with seven minutes remaining.

The Diamonds kept their cool at the death to secure the win and level the series at 2-2, claiming the Constellation Cup on superior goal percentage.

But it was the quality of refereeing that was a big talking point after the match, with Taurua furious at Yuliani’s performance.

New Zealand are renowned for their on-court discipline, often committing 25 per cent less fouls than Australia whenever the arch-rivals meet.

But Sunday’s match told a different statistical tale, with NZ called for 66 penalties to Australia’s 63.

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The Diamonds celebrate their Constellation Cup victory

Taurua believed many of those calls were wrong, and even went to the trouble of analysing the foul count from the past five matches between the two sides to prove her point.

She said the fact that Yuliani was handed the refereeing gig in the fourth Test despite not officiating in any of the previous three matches of the series was a huge mistake.

“We have somebody that comes in from Singapore – where are they ranked? – and blows it [the interpretations of the rules] out of the window,” Taurua said.

“I thought the Diamonds were confused [as well] to some respect.

“One minute it’s a two-second held ball, next minute it’s a four-minute held ball, next minute there’s nothing, there’s no call at all.

“That really disturbs me, because we are not a 60-penalty team. We want to put something out there that’s really competitive.

“But yet the decisions that are made behind the scenes in regards to that quality is unacceptable. For that I’m really disappointed.”

Taurua made a special point to praise the Diamonds, declaring them the better team on the day.

But she said the issue of referee quality needed to be addressed, and she’s vowed to put in a formal complaint.

Star Diamonds goal shooter Caitlin Bassett nailed 25 of her 28 goal attempts to ensure she celebrated her 100-game milestone with a win in front of 13,233 fans – a new netball record crowd for Perth.

The win was also the perfect send-off for retiring shooter Caitlin Thwaites, who replaced Bassett in the third quarter to finish with six goals.

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The retiring Caitlin Thwaites waves farewell to the crowd

“Definitely the pressure’s off,” Diamonds coach Lisa Alexander said after the match.”I just had the feeling they weren’t going to let it slip. We practised all week. They just dug in and they dug really deep, and they did a fantastic job.”

The victory was sweet revenge for Australia, who lost the World Cup final to New Zealand by a goal in July, and also twice lost to the Silver Ferns during the current series by a goal.

Source: smh.com.au

When preparing your playing surface for high level competition or just the weekend’s local games, trust Nellakir to ensure delivery of an absolute premium playing surface for all Timber Sports Flooring. Nellakir are the leading experts in the construction, maintenance and professional scheduled cleaning of all Sprung Timber Sports Flooring in Victoria and Tasmania.

Call now on 03 9467 6126 and arrange a free consultation with one of our technicians or simply leave your details here for a prompt response to your enquiry.

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

Netball Netball Netball – Can Australia bounce back from its Sydney loss in the Constellation Cup Series with New Zealand?

The rivalry between Australia and New Zealand in any sport has always been intense. It’s a rather strange thing – with New Zealand often coming across as ‘the mouse that roared’. Aussies aren’t too interested in Rugby Union and frankly apart from Cricket – where Australia has dominated New Zealand, there are not too many other sporting codes where the rivalry lives up to the hype.

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Except one – NETBALL!! – and right now the girls from the Shaky Isles – the land of the long white cloud – Aotearoa, have the Aussie gals on the ropes 2 series wins to 1 in the Constellation Cup series. With one game to go Australia can still claim the series with a win as their percentage is higher. Good luck to both teams from Nellakir. With luck the new courts under construction at Melbourne’s Netball Headquarters in Royal Park will be complete in time for the next series. Nellakir are the leading experts in Sprung Timber Sports Flooring in Victoria and Tasmania and have been contracted to complete the 6 new courts scheduled for the facility.

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For now here’s an article that looks to the final game in Perth.

Constellation Cup: Diamond Caitlin Bassett set to shine at sell-out Perth clash

Fairytale endings have been few and far between for Caitlin Bassett over the past 18 months, but she hopes that will all change during her 100-game milestone for the Diamonds.

Captain Bassett will notch a century of matches for Australia in the winner-takes-all battle against New Zealand at a sold-out RAC Arena in her hometown Perth on Sunday.

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The Silver Ferns lead the four-match Constellation Cup series 2-1, but Australia will win the title on percentage if they can triumph in Perth, and that would be a welcome change of fortune for 31-year-old Bassett.

She has enjoyed enormous international success since her 2008 debut, including two world titles, but there have been some heartbreaking results in big games since she took over the captaincy in late 2017.

In July, her team lost the World Cup final to NZ by a goal, having lost the Commonwealth Games final to England by the same margin last year.

Their two losses to NZ in this current series have also been by a single goal.

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But a win in Perth on Sunday would see Australia snare the Constellation Cup for a seventh straight year.

The Diamonds notched a win in coach Lisa Alexander’s 100-game milestone earlier this month, and goal shooter Bassett hopes history will repeat itself on Sunday.

“For me the last couple of years the fairytale endings haven’t come off,“ Bassett said.

“But it would be cherry on top of the cake (if we can win this Sunday), it would be great.

“We had another great milestone in Lisa’s 100th and I think we did find that extra motivation to get that win. It was the Gatorade shower afterwards that we were so driven by.

“For us a milestone is fantastic, but for me it’s about the tradition we’ve had.

“In the past we’ve retained the Constellation Cup so many times. For me as captain it’s that motivation that I want to do what others did before me.”

So is Bassett expecting a Gatorade shower if they win?

“I’m hoping for champagne not Gatorade,” she said with a laugh.

Bassett said it was fitting her milestone was in Perth, where her glittering career first took off.

“To get out there in front of a crowd who first saw me as an uncoordinated bumbling teenager, and now (have seen me) develop into an uncoordinated bumbling adult – it’s pretty exciting,” she said.

Sunday’s crowd is expected to surpass Perth’s international netball record of 12,365.

Source: https://www.perthnow.com.au/sport/netball/constellation-cup-diamond-caitlin-bassett-set-to-shine-at-sell-out-perth-clash-ng-b881361427z

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Remember for a premium playing surface always rely on Nellakir. From Construction to Scheduled Cleaning and Annual Maintenance, Nellakir offer the very best in care and protection for your valuable premium Timber Sports Flooring.

Call now on 03 9467 6126 or leave your details here for a prompt response. Arrange a consultation with our technicians to develop the right program for your needs.

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Nellakir helps young athletes reach their goals by providing the highest quality Sprung Timber Sports Floor playing surfaces.

Australia takes lead in Netball Quad series with win over arch rival England

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At Nellakir, Victoria and Tasmania’s leading provider of Sprung Timber Sports Floors, we take more than a passing interest in how our National teams fare in both Netball and Basketball. Nellakir built the two major show courts at the Victorian Netball Centre in Royal Park, so it was with some satisfaction that we note Australia’s victory over England in that sport (Netball) at the Netball Quad series being played in Newcastle yesterday, exacting revenge on the team that beat them in the Commonwealth Games in April.

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Victorian State Netball Centre

Championship level Netball requires a championship level surface. Nellakir use and recommend ASF Horner Sports Flooring systems for truly professional Sports Flooring of the highest quality. In NSW these same ASF Horner systems are installed by Shoreline Sports Floors and the surface of the venue for the Netball Quad series is one of our sister company’s (Shoreline) completed and maintained projects. Read all about the game here…

Australia grind out victory over England to take Quad Series lead

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Almost five months to the day since England sensationally beat Australia to claim netball gold at the Commonwealth Games, a less-than-sparkling Diamonds team exacted their revenge, seeing off the Roses 52-47 in Newcastle to take the lead in the Quad Series.

Lisa Alexander’s charges may have won the first encounter between the nations since that watershed moment on the Gold Coast in April, but it was a grind. The win in front of 4,544 fans at the Newcastle Entertainment Centre also came with a big asterisk.

England were without Jo Harten, who was sidelined with a knee complaint, after getting a knock late in the Roses’ 52-39 victory against New Zealand on Saturday. England, with the NSW Swift recruit Natalie Haythornthwaite starting at goal attack in Harten’s absence and their Games hero Helen Housby back at shooter, settled quicker than the Diamonds and led 14-11 at quarter-time. An upset looked on the cards.

But once the Diamonds attack end hit their stride, thanks to the injection of Liz Watson for Kim Ravaillion at centre at quarter-time and a more settled Caitlin Bassett, who shot 37 from 40 at 93% accuracy thanks to beautiful feeding from Kelsey Browne, by half-time Australia had taken the ascendency 26-24.

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Alexander admitted the Diamonds were disappointed Harten was missing. “I must admit, yes we would have really loved that challenge,” she said. But, in the lead-up to the World Cup in Liverpool next July, Alexander said the side would work hard to simulate the Harten/Housby partnership in training.

Alexander played down talk of revenge and said Australia were thinking about the future, not the past. “It’s about establishing our way of playing, we’ve got a new group. For bits of tonight I thought we did that. But we’ve got work to do. It was a grind really tonight.”

When the sides meet again, on English soil, physicality will be a talking point. Alexander was not impressed with the “hit and bang style” employed in Newcastle. “It’s a very interesting style … closing off space really,” she said.“We’re not playing like that. We play with skill. We try to get our defenders going around the body, to the line of the ball, not hitting the bodies … I thought that was a little bit untidy tonight.”

Source: theguardian.com

Nellakir offer expert construction and maintenance of all timber sports flooring. Call now on 03 9467 6126 for an obligation free quotation on regular maintenance, renovation or refurbishment, or complete new construction of all sprung timber sports flooring surfaces. Or leave your details here and one of our technicians will contact you to assist you with your enquiry.

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