By Georgie-May Walker.
Brisbane North Cougars coach Amanda Vanderwal says her side have hit form at the right time and are ready to put out their best netball against Brisbane South Wildcats this weekend at Logan Metro Indoor Centre.
The Cougars finished second to Suncoast Lynx in the City division this year following last season’s undefeated title winning heroics, but are quietly confident of going back-to-back.
“We’ve had to deal with a lot of people away and coming in out of the team, so it’s taken us a little while to settle in to our normal rhythm,” Vanderwal said.
“But the back end of the season has been good for us, so we’re just hoping to take that form into finals and take one game at a time.”
Vanderwal is confident her side is ready finals after overcoming two tough losses this season.
“It’s quite refreshing for us not to be the top team with a target on our back. We’re quite prepared to come in as underdogs and just work one game at a time, and hopefully we’ll do enough to get through to the finals,” she said.
“We’re just going in really concentrating on our own performance and whoever we have to match up against, we’ll match up against and adjust on the day.
“The character of the girls show that they’re just prepared to knuckle down, put their heads down and do the jobs.
“They own up and take responsibility for where they haven’t put out their best performances through the year. They are really good like that. They don’t look for excuses they are just prepared to put the hard work in and make sure they get the result they want.”
The Wildcats are aware of the Cougar’s rich history success but are unperturbed.
“There’s no doubt that if we play sixty minutes of consistent netball that we’re a good chance,” coach Anna Young said.
Ex-Firebirds wing defence Hulita Haukinima is ineligible for finals, but Young said the Wildcats are in shape and ready for a ferocious game against the Cougars.
“For us it’s about being really gritty, just getting in there doing the hard work to cause turnovers and loose balls,” Young said.
“We just need to be there to support each other. If we can treasure possession of the ball instead of trying to do the flashy stuff, I think we will go okay.”