“The best Constellation Cup, we’ve seen in years.”- Sue Gaudion.
This is what the netball experts are calling it. A rivalry that is so strong, we’re talking about Australia VS New Zealand. After the 3rd match today, NZ lead the series 2 wins to Australia’s one. Mind you, the two games that Australia lost was only by one point but to rub more salt into the wound, this is the bargain they lost the 2019 World Cup by.
New Zealand are in great shape, and yes, I’m bias because I’m a massive Sunshine Coast Lightning fan, but former Lightning coach Noeline Taurua, is at the helm of the Kiwi team. She has taken them from from 4th in the world at the 2018 Commonwealth Games to number 1 in the world after their win in the UK back in July.
Let’s just be clear though, I’m still barracking for Australia BIG TIME! But, I did want to point out just how amazing that turn around in the NZ team has been. While Lisa Alexander (Aussie Coach), would have been scratching her head in moments of the game, more so in the attacking end, she made a few big calls at once, replacing, Gretel Tippet and Caitlin Bassett out for the Melbourne Vixens duo, Caitlin Thwaites and Tegan Phillip. While many Phillips stats were down, there was that “knowing” between to the two. The game see-sawed and at times like a tennis match with massive long passes, that would have both coaches shaking in their boots. With both teams shooting at 90%, 3 intercepts for Australia and 7 for NZ (3 coming from our Sunny Coast Lightning veteran Laura Langman in the last quarter) is it any wonder this rivalry is so strong!
One more game to go in Perth and the Constellation Cup could be anyone’s. With the new improved Suncorp Super Netball League, this league has pushed players on a national and international basis and has taken them to the next level. In my eyes, netball has never been in better shape and I’m just so thrilled that I can play a small part in such a wonderful sport for woman.
Good luck Diamonds, you’ve so got this!