2023/24 WNBL Team Wrap – Bendigo Spirit

IT was a season to remember in the Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) for the 2023/24 fixture, with an extremely tight season capped off with a marvellous finals series.

For a large portion of the season, most of the teams in the competition were in the hunt for a top-four spot. In fact it came down to the final round to determine which sides would advance to the postseason in a thrilling finish.

In the end, the Southside Flyers emerged champions after defeating the valiant Perth Lynx 2-1 in the Grand Final series.

With the season now wrapped, Rookie Me Central will be dissecting the performance of each club in the 2023/24 fixture, putting all 10 teams under the microscope now that the dust has settled.

Today’s team will be the Bendigo Spirit, who were one of a number of teams in the hunt for a top-four spot in the final rounds of the season, but fell short of that goal.

Bendigo Spirit

2023/24 record – 11 wins, 10 losses
Ladder Position – 6th


It was a tough start to the fixture for the Spirit, losing their first four games of the season, with several coming in devastatingly close fashion. Bendigo finally got on the board in Round 4, with a big win over the Sydney Flames, and backed it up the following week with another victory to come back into finals calculations. Although it was an obvious lift in form, two losses in two weeks at the hands of the Flyers restricted Bendigo from getting on any sort of a run, and the team fell percentage short of a finals appearance at the end of the fixture.

MVPKelsey Griffin

Although she did not suit up for every game (17 out of 21 appearances), Griffin ensured her impact was felt whenever she pulled on a Bendigo jersey. The Spirit’s captain has already established herself as one of the stars of the competition, and lived up to that title with another team-best campaign in the 2023/24 season. Griffin averaged 15.9 points, 7.7 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.4 steals per game, and was the team’s go-to option on the offensive end, showcasing her dominance at scoring in the paint.

THE COACH – Kennedy Kereama

In his second season at the helm, Kereama built on the progress he made last season, and will be pleased with the positives that came out of the campaign. The former West Coast Waves coach saw improvements on the offensive end at times from the Spirit, and the four-game winning streak heading into the final round was a big highlight, showcasing that Bendigo is a seriously tough assignment when riding momentum, its just a matter of building it.


Finding some talented young players will be at the top of the list for the Spirit, given their two best performers in Griffin (36 years old) and Alex Wilson (30 years old) are in the back end of their excellent careers. Working hard on the import front will be key to Bendigo taking the next step as well, and should be encouraged by the recruiting of teams such as the Flyers in that department.

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