Central Pulse wary of backlash from Mystics

HAMISH BIDWELL
Last updated 05:00 13/03/2014
Robyn Broughton
MAARTEN HOLL/Fairfax NZ
PULSE COACH: Robyn Broughton.

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There was no joy for the Central Pulse on Monday night.

No, seeing the star-studded Northern Mystics cop a 50-36 thrashing from the Waikato-Bay of Plenty Magic on Monday night was not a sight anyone in Robyn Broughton's team relished.

There can be times you enjoy the misfortune of others. This wasn't one of them.

''Professional players hurt. Like they [the Mystics] would've hated that performance,'' said Broughton, whose team meets the Mystics in Auckland on Sunday.

''It was like when we lost by one against the Thunderbirds [on March 3]. It hurts and you're not going to play like that again. We'll probably bear the brunt of it.''

Victory saw the Magic move to the top of the trans-Tasman Netball League and they are one of four unbeaten teams in the competition, along with the Melbourne Vixens, New South Wales Swifts and Adelaide Thunderbirds. The Pulse are fifth, with the Mystics way down in last place.

Broughton said that, with Leana de Bruin and Casey Kopua in the defensive circle, the Magic will always be useful. But the Mystics' problems are such that Monday night didn't provide an accurate gauge of exactly how good the Magic are.

As easy as it might seem to dismiss the Mystics, they beat the Pulse in this corresponding clash last year, in what was their only win of the season.

''We've just got to concentrate on getting our game right and looking after what we can control,'' Broughton said.

''We get enough ball, but again we had soft turnovers [in Saturday's 11-goal win over the Southern Steel]. A mistimed pass or a misinterpretation of where an attacker's going to go - you can control those things in a game if you read it properly.''

Provided they do that, then Broughton believes the Pulse can beat anyone on any night.

Saturday's victory helped reinforce that feeling, after the agonising loss to the Thunderbirds in round one.

''Look, you can't get away from winning. I mean I've been reading all that stuff about Mark [Hurricanes coach Mark Hammett] and the [Hurricanes] players have at least come out and said it's up to them,'' Broughton said.

''You can only do so much [as a coach]. You can point them in the right direction and you can set up a gameplan, which is done with them, and then it all comes down to winning. As I've read this week, it's the most important thing to the Kiwi sports person.''

In terms of her own team, Broughton is tempted to again give wing defence Joline Henry a run at centre. She just needs someone to take ownership of wing defence  first.

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''The players have to stand up and say 'hey, I want that position'. There's Claire [Kersten], Eli [Elias Shadrock], Kati Cooper's played there for me before. But they have to choose themselves, select themselves.''

- The Dominion Post

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