Fusion finals bound!

BurtonPhotography-4241

The Queensland Fusion is finals bound finishing third in the Australian Netball League (ANL) at the end of the regular competition, coming away with one win from its two matches against the two powerhouse Victorian teams over the weekend in Melbourne.

The Fusion easily overcame the Flames on Saturday night 60-44 before backing up in a top-of-the-table clash against first placed Fury on Sunday, going down 47-64.

In what was a crucial loss, the Queenslanders have slipped to third place, overtaken on percentage by the Western Sting which had a stunning victory overpowering the Southern Force.

Fusion Coach Kylee Byrne said even though her team dropped to third spot it was a great result and the girls are excited about being part of the ANL finals.

“We went into the weekend knowing that it was do or die netball for us and the girls responded perfectly on Saturday night against the Victorian Flames who were also playing for a spot in finals so we knew this was going to be a tough match,” Byrne said.

Byrne said the team had to overcome a few obstacles, including delayed flights and starting time but her young team handled the pressure well and produced the game they needed to get the points and cement a finals spot.

Backing up for two games with such a short recovery time was always going to be a tough ask for the Fusion especially against the Fury but Byrne said her outfit put some great netball together in patches but just couldn’t maintain steadfastness across all four quarters.

“A team like the Victorian Fury will make you pay for inconsistency and the score line got away on us,” Byrne said.

“I was happy with the start and finish to the match and thought players like Sally Butters, Kate Underwood and Laura Scherian controlled the match for us.”

Byrne said it was great opportunity to get all players on the court across the weekend to give them a taste of the pressures leading into the semi-final against the Western Sting this weekend.

The last time the Fusion made the finals was in 2011, finishing outside of the medal places.

Interestingly the same four teams are vying again for national honours, and Byrne is championing a different outcome.

“Finals netball is a different ball game and every one of these teams will rise to the occasion,” Byrne said.

“It’s such an exciting time for netball in Queensland with this amount of talent and I can’t wait to see what these athletes can produce under pressure come the semi-final this weekend.”

QLD Fusion (60) defeated Victorian Flames (44)
Fusion shooting stats:
Gretel Tippett 41/51 (81%)
Stephanie Wood 10/13 (77%)
Cara Koenen 5/7 (72%)
Ameliaranne Wells 4/6 (67%)

Victorian Fury (64) defeated QLD Fusion (47)
Fusion shooting stats:
Gretel Tippett 19/26 (73%)
Ameliaranne Wells 13/19 (68%)
Cara Koenen 12/14 (86%)
Stephanie Wood 3/6 (50%)

 

SEMI FINALS DRAW
Saturday, August 23, 5:00PM
Victorian Fury v Netball NSW Waratahs
Waverley Netball Centre

 

Saturday, August 23, 7:00PM
Western Sting v QLD Fusion
Waverley Netball Centre