The Marlin Coast Marlins will take on Souths Whitsunday Sharks in a bid to be crowned the inaugural Queensland State Netball League (QSNL) Division 2 Country champions.
In a shake-up to previous years, the two best teams in Division 2 Country this season will play across a stand-alone three-match finals series.
“This is great for state league netball as it gives recognition and rewards the results of those country teams throughout the season,” said Netball Queensland GM of Performance and Competition, Richard McInnes.
“Instead of travelling to south-east Queensland and playing in the City finals series for an overall Division 2 champion – the two best teams all year will now fight to hold the coveted title of QSNL Country champion,” said McInnes.
The Marlins will be tough to beat and are heavy favourites to hoist the silverware in 2018 after remaining undefeated all season.
They won all 12 of their games this year with an average winning margin of 14 goals – their biggest victory coming in Round 13 with a 77-30 thumping of Wide Bay.
As they have done all season, the Sharks are expected to show plenty of fight and are happy to take the underdogs tag into the series against the Marlin Coast.
After finishing equal-second on 15 competition points with Magnetic North, the Sharks scraped into the finals courtesy of a superior goal percentage.
It’s Souths Whitsunday maiden finals appearance and they’ll be fired up against the Marlins after their last-start loss to them in the final round of the regular season.
After opening the year with a 40-40 draw against Steelcats, Souths Whitsunday finished 2018 with seven wins and four losses.
Three of those defeats were against their grand final opponents – with the Marlins holding a perfect record over the Sharks this season.
That all resets this weekend as the three-match finals series gets underway in Cairns.
The opening two matches will be played on the Saturday at 2:00pm and 6:30pm respectively, with Game 3 of the series to be contested on Sunday at 10:00am, but only if required.
The QSNL Division 1, Division 2 City and the 19U grade girls will still all battle for supremacy across a traditional Grand Final day which will take place on Saturday 15 September at Logan Metro Indoor Sports Centre.