Coach expects benched van Dyk to respond
Despite overseeing what might well have been Irene van Dyk's worst match in a Magic dress and one of the ugliest of the veteran's sparkling career, coach Noeline Taurua is backing her champion to bounce back quickly.
Van Dyk was off her game in the Waikato-Bay of Plenty side's 45-33 defeat at the hands of the Thunderbirds in Adelaide on Monday night.
The 40-year-old sharpshooter was shut out of the contest and had no answers to the impressive defensive display of goal keep Sharni Layton and, in the end, struggled to give her feeders any options.
Van Dyk was benched for the final quarter, after not being able to sink a goal in the third term.
"Missed shots, which is very uncharacteristic, probably a high turnover and also just availability," Taurua said of the reason to sit her usually reliable match-winner down.
"It's just what needs to be done at a certain time to be able to get the ball moving.
"We need two shooters to be able to spread the load."
Van Dyk put up just 16 attempts and ended with 13 goals - her lowest tally in an ANZ Championship match - while she also committed six turnovers.
"It's just a day off for her," Taurua said. "Like she always does, she looks at herself a huge amount and then she comes back for the following week.
"That's the thing with Irene. She's a professional. It doesn't happen [often] and that's a positive part of her - that she can [perform] week in, week out.
"And she's the first one, if she doesn't feel like she's had a good game as well, to put her hand up."