Suncorp Super Netball

GIANTS upset Fever to set up first-ever all-NSW Super Netball Grand Final

GIANTS Netball is on the way to the 2021 Suncorp Super Netball Grand Final after stunning West Coast Fever 64-61 at USC Stadium on Saturday.

The minor premiers lost to the NSW Swifts in the major semi-final last week and were presented with an enormous challenge – West Coast Fever.

In true Fever fashion, the side from the West stormed home to get within two goals of a victory.

But the work had been done and GIANTS weathered the storm to book themselves a place in the first-ever NSW Derby Grand Final.

GIANTS coach Julie Fitzgerald said the club was proud to seal the win for the club’s fans back home.

“We are very excited about [the Grand Final being an all NSW-final],” she said.

“To be playing off in the grand final is an enormous thing to look forward to this week.

“We know we learned an awful lot in the game last week, whether we had won or lost… we have to lift again and we know we have to do that.”

Keeper Sam Poolman was a key standout for GIANTS in a team effort, and coach Fitzgerald said it was just that.

“I am very happy for her, it was about everyone doing the job in front of Sam… to have pressure down the court,” she said.

“She had such a big target and did it so well today. If you let your guard down Fever can bring the ball down so quickly – it can come from anywhere.”

From the first whistle, the GIANTS had a clear tactic, confuse the space and force the Fever’s feeders to reset and avoid sighting shooter Jhaniele Fowler.

In true netball fashion, every GIANTS player stood up and did their job, with keeper Poolman winning critical ball early to allow the midcourt to apply the pressure to Fever’s quick midcourt.

Wings Maddie Hay and Amy Parmenter and centre Jamie-Lee Price caused havoc down the court through tips, deflections and intercepts.

Hay and Price both featured strongly in feeds for the day.

Fever was forced into mistakes and could not withstand the scoreboard pressure as both GIANTS Shooters Jo Harten and Sophie Dwyer continued to pile on the goals.

Despite a late flurry of Super Shots from Fever, GIANTS held on after a chaotic final five minutes.

It was the first win in the finals for GIANTS since 2017, the last time the side qualified for a Suncorp Super Netball Grand Final.

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