PREVIEW | WNBL Grand Final – Southside Flyers vs. Perth Lynx

THE big dance has arrived in the Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL), with the Grand Final series set to kick off proceedings later today in the culmination of a cracking 2023/24 season.

The deciding matchup will see the Southside Flyers take on the Perth Lynx in the ultimate battle for the Championship. The series will be best of three, as the second and third best sides lock horns in what should be an even and unpredictable matchup.

The ladder-leading championship favourites in the Townsville Fire were shockingly swept by the Lynx in the semi-finals, completely opening up the race for the 2023/24 title, and there should be some extremely entertaining contests in the coming week.

Southside Flyers (2nd) vs. Perth Lynx (3rd)

Game One – Sunday, March 10 @ 3:30pm, Melbourne Sports Centres, Parkville
Game Two – Thursday, March 14 @ 9:30pm, Bendat Basketball Centre
Game Three (if needed) – Sunday March 17 @ TBC, Melbourne Sports Centres, Parkville


The Flyers came into the postseason on a bit of a sour note, having squandered the chance to finish in top spot with a loss to the Lightning in the final round of the season. However, it set up an entertaining semi-final series against their crosstown rivals in the Boomers. In that series, Southside emerged 2-1 winners in thrilling fashion, getting the victory in game three to move one step closer to the ultimate goal. The Flyers have been one of the strongest sides in the back half of the fixture, and boast a stacked roster that brings plenty of postseason experience, making them a tough assignment and a strong chance of winning it all.

The Lynx snuck into the finals in the last round of the season, but have absolutely made it count. Despite sitting in fourth spot and coming up against the minor champions, Perth delivered one of the most impressive upsets in recent WNBL history, sweeping the Fire in two games in a terrific showing. First defeating Townsville on its own deck, before heading back to Bendat Basketball Centre to finish the job at home, the Lynx will come into the Grand Final with a world of confidence, and the knowledge that they can beat anyone in any venue.


The last time these two teams locked horns was in Round 13, and the Flyers will take plenty of confidence from this result. Southside emerged 21-point winners in a dominant display, outperforming the Lynx in nearly every aspect of the game. Although that may be a grim sight for Perth fans, the Lynx were missing their best player (who we will touch on shortly), which had a big impact on the result of the game, and given they are performing at a much higher level now, today should be a more even contest.


For the Flyers, it was perfectly demonstrated what Lauren Jackson is capable of, despite being into the twilight of her career. At 42 years of age, she still managed to deliver one of the individual performances of the season in the elimination clash against Melbourne earlier in the week, posting a whopping double-double of 38 points and 11 rebounds. Her shot-making ability is still unstoppable, able to score at all three levels and proving nearly impossible to guard at times, and if she can explode for a similar performance in at least one of the games in this series, it could have a huge say in the result.

The Lynx struggled without star guard Aari McDonald when she missed a significant amount of time with injury mid-season, but her return has sparked a return to form for Perth. Her importance was demonstrated in the series against Townsville, where she delivered a pair of match-winning performances to lead her side to victory. In game one, McDonald had 26 points and nine assists, before outdoing herself in game two with 27 points and 11 assists, and if she can continue to orchestrate the offence at this level, Perth will have its best chance at taking home the trophy.


Southside Flyers 2-1.

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