Carina Leagues Club Tigers will be out to topple arch rivals Brisbane North Cougars today in a headline Samsung QSNL Division 1 clash at Logan Metro Indoor Centre.
The Cougars are a perfect 6-0 to start the season, while the Tigers’ sole loss came to their northside rivals in round one after they relinquished a five-point half-time lead.
Star Tigers shooter and former Queensland Firebird Beryl Friday said she had every confidence her side could go one better in the return fixture.
“We’ve worked really hard together as a team. Every week we stick to our game plan, work on what we’re going to do and don’t worry about the opposition will do,” Friday said.
“We know if we play our best that no team will beat us. Every training is a lot of fun and every game is a lot of fun. We’re really good friends off the court. All of us are 100 per cent in and know we can win the competition.”
Friday has been an outstanding performer for the Tigers this year after winning back to back championships with the Firebirds, topping the Samsung QSNL MVP voting at the season’s halfway point.
The Ingham junior said she had reignited her passion for the game after the pressure of two seasons at netball’s elite level.
“Every game of netball I played before here was trying to work towards something. To work into the Queensland Fusion, to become a Fusion starter, to become a Firebird and then trying to keep my contract,” Friday said.
“I’m at a point now where I’ve won two ANZ Championships, I’ve been captained by Laura Geitz – if that’s all my netball career amounts to I’m happy. I don’t put any pressure on myself. Every week I just want to play good netball.
“The better I play, the more fun I have. I don’t take myself too seriously. MVP would be cool, but what makes it worthwhile is playing with really great players like Alexia Baker, Katie Walker, Ruby Paton – the list goes on – who are pushing you each session.”
Cougars defender Tara Hinchliffe said her side was looking forward to a big finish to the season now representative duties with Queensland Fusion and the state underage sides were completed.
“It’s great to be back training with the girls. Our connections have really grown since we first played the Tigers at the start of the season, so everyone is excited to get out there and a have a good crack,” Hinchliffe said.
“Historically we’ve always had a really good rivalry with the Tigers. We’ve both recruited some great new players and we know it will be another good game.
“I’m looking forward to playing (Fusion and Queensland 19/U teammate) Alexia Baker. It will be different – hard on court – but when we come off everyone will be friends again. It will be a great contest.”
After a hugely successful season which has so far reaped a finals appearance with the Fusion, a silver medal with Queensland 19/U and MVP honours at the National Netball Championship, Hinchliffe said she was as motivated as ever to achieve more success.
“It’s been a great year so far and I just want to keep that going. I can now just purely focus on this team and where we’re going rather than myself.”
Samsung QSNL Division 1, Round 7, 6 May 2017, Logan Metro Indoor Centre, Logan
1:30pm: Cougars v Tigers
5pm: Jaguars v Lions
5pm: Wildcats v Lynx
Samsung QSNL Division 2, Round 9, 6 May 2017, Logan Metro Indoor Centre, Logan
3pm: Cougars v Jaguars
7pm: Wildcats v Panthers
7pm: Lynx v Tigers