Pre-season woes for Waikato-Bay of Plenty Magic

AARON GOILE
Last updated 05:00 17/02/2014

Relevant offers

Netball

Casey Kopua still believes Silver Ferns can upset Australia at Netball World Cup Netball World Cup: Silver Fern Laura Langman looking after the small things Anna Harrison returns to Northern Mystics roster for 2016 trans-Tasman season Doubt lingers around Silver Ferns shooters ahead of World Cup Mainland Tactix stick with core of squad, despite another poor season Egan: Mainland Tactix fail to excite with their off-season recruiting Wellington's oldest regular netballer bows out after 43 years on the court World Cup will reveal all about Silver Ferns Maria Tutaia doing her best to sort Silver Ferns' shooting end ahead of World Cup Norma Plummer calls for trans-Tasman expansion but another option more likely

In a potentially ominous sign for Waikato-Bay of Plenty Magic fans, their team returned from Melbourne last night having failed to win a game at the Summer Shootout pre-season tournament.

The Magic lost six and drew one of their 30-minute matches, with new coach Julie Fitzgerald looking to mould together a host of new faces this year.

While the results were sobering, the score counts for nothing at this stage of the season, and with all teams mixing and matching their combinations, it is hard to get a true gauge of where things lie.

The NSW Swifts were the only team to come out on the right side of the ledger in every game.

"I think we've made a lot of progress, and that's what you come to these tournaments to do," Fitzgerald said.

"I'm really pleased that we got to get so many of our young ones out there against different opposition. It certainly was a big awakening for them, a lot of them had never seen netball that intense before. So in that sense it was successful for us."

Fitzgerald felt the team had a steady improvement through the weekend in things like conversion rates from centre passes and turnovers, and their through-court play, but now needs to see "consistency of effort".

"We did some really good stuff at times, you'd sit back and you were really, really pleased with the passage of play, but we just weren't able to keep backing it up and be consistent, so that's what we're really going to have to sort out," she said.

All players got on court, for pretty much equal game-time, besides captain Casey Kopua, who is nursing her way back from ankle surgery, and was given 45-minutes of play.

"We had decided coming into this weekend that she would only play three half-games, so each day of the tournament she played half a game, and came out of it really well. She was busting to do a little bit more but we know that we have to be cautious," Fitzgerald said.

There were no other injuries to come out of the tournament for the Magic, whose squad of 13 has only five players returning from last year, with Fitzgerald citing the trip as a positive team-bonding experience.

The Magic were scheduled to have one further pre-season game, against the Mystics in Cambridge, however the Mystics have cancelled that, so the Magic's remaining pre-competition hit-out will be against a local men's team.

Their trans-Tasman league opener is against the Mainland Tactix in Christchurch on March 1.

AT A GLANCE

Magic's Summer Shootout results

Friday: Lost to Vixens 24-21

Saturday: Lost to Swifts 29-13 Lost to Tactix 26-20 Drew with Fever 29-29 Lost to Steel 30-29

Ad Feedback

Sunday: Lost to Firebirds 32-24 Lost to Mystics 34-20 

- Waikato Times

Special offers
Opinion poll

Who should play goal shoot for the Silver Ferns?

Bailey Mes

Catherine Latu

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content