2021 ANZ Premiership: Post-season stats wrap

THE 2021 ANZ Premiership season is officially done and dusted, which means it is time for our post-season reviews and team compilations. Next up is our end-of-season stats wrap, discussing the leading stats-getters for the season across a variety of areas and the top performers on the stats sheet. >>>GRAND FINAL WRAP
  1.  Grace Nweke (852)
  2.  Ellie Bird (647)
  3.  George Fisher (585)
  4.  Aliyah Dunn (539)
  5.  Maia Wilson (483)
  1.  Grace Nweke (951)
  2.  Ellie Bird (726)
  3.  George Fisher (640)
  4.  Aliyah Dunn (601)
  5.  Maia Wilson (594)
  1. Caitlin Bassett (92%)
  2. George Fisher (91%)
  3. Grace Nweke (90%) Aliyah Dunn (90%)
  4. Ellie Bird (89%)
  5. Maia Wilson (81%) Tiana Metuarau (81%) Te Amo Amaru-Tibble (81%)
When it came to goalers this season, there was no shortage of volume, accuracy or talent across the six teams. It is no surprise that Grace Nweke topped the tally for both goals and attempts in a huge season which saw her side clinch the premiership, with the tall timber undeniable under the post. With over 200 more goals scored than any other goaler in the competition and fellow grand finalist Ellie Bird her closest competitor with 647 goals for the season, Nweke was a remarkable target and had little issue finding ball in her grasps to finish with 852 goals at 90 per cent. Bird was in second with Steel’s George Fisher and Pulse’s Aliyah Dunn close third and fourth with 585 and 539 goals respectively, while Maia Wilson rounded out the top five on 483 goals credit to an excellent start to the season. Despite petering off in the latter stage of the season, Wilson’s dominance early on was key to the Stars’ winning streak at the beginning of the season. Accuracy is where things get interesting, with Australian goal shooter Caitlin Bassett leading the pack on 92 per cent for the season, more lacking possession than intent to finish with 474 goals from 518 attempts. While her team finished on the bottom of the ladder with just one win to their name, it was not for a lack of accuracy on Bassett’s part, holding strong to post. In second was Fisher, with the English talent starring in her debut season and realistically could have added further goals and potentially greater accuracy if it were not for a concussion midway through the season. Nevertheless, Fisher finished with a 91 per cent accuracy to her name, missing an average of 3.6 goals per match in an incredible debut effort. Nweke, Dunn, Bird and Wilson are all predictable names in the top five for accuracy given their volume, while goal attacks Tiana Metuarau and Te Amo Amaru-Tibble sneak into the top five finishing with an 81 per cent accuracy for their respective seasons, finishing with 221 and 219 goals, respectively.
  1. Peta Toeava (662)
  2. Gina Crampton (642)
  3. Shannon Saunders (583)
  4. Mila Reuelu-Buchanan (551)
  5. Kimiora Poi (469)
  1. Whitney Souness (476)
  2. Gina Crampton (359)
  3. Bailey Mes (324)
  4. Tiana Metuarau (321)
  5. Shannon Saunders (318)
The midcourt stats feature a number of repeat offenders, purely down to the dominance of a couple of the premier midcourters in the competition. Peta Toeava is the clear leader for circle feeds with 662 to her name, and while she does not feature on the centre pass tally her attacking counterpart in golaer Bailey Mes takes out third position on that list with 324 receives, clearly allowing the attacking third to open up for Toeava and, in turn, Nweke. It is a credit to the workrate of Stars duo Gina Crampton and Mila Reuelu-Buchanan, both fitting onto the top five for feeds given their impressive ability to turn and feed into the circle from anywhere within the goal third, with Crampton also finding herself second on the centre pass tally. Whitney Souness leads all-comers for the amount centre pass receives for the season with 476, with her side’s feeding clearly shared across the board given they did not register amongst the top five, while despite typically being known as a more defensive-minded centre, Kimiora Poi slots into fifth on the feeds list. Like Crampton, Shannon Saunders also found her way onto both lists, taking the court in wing attack more often than not as she registered 583 feeds and 318 centre pass receives throughout the season.
  1. Karin Burger (48)
  2. Anna Harrison (39)
  3. Elle Temu (35)
  4. Taneisha Fifita (25) Kelera Nawai (25) Kate Heffernan (25)
  5. Sulu Fitzpatrick (21) Kelly Jury (21)
  1. Jane Watson (78)
  2. Karin Burger (69)
  3. Anna Harrison (66)
  4. Taneisha Fifita (63) Erena Mikaere (63)
  5. Sulu Fitzpatrick (58)
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  1. Sulu Fitzpatrick (30)
  2. Karin Burger (27)
  3. Kelera Nawai (22)
  4. Taneisha Fifita (19)
  5. Elle Temu (18)
  1.  Anna Harrison (226)
  2.  Taneisha Fifita (221)
  3.  Kelera Nawai (196)
  4.  Karin Burger (189)
  5.  Erena Mikaere (177)
We have grouped the four remaining major statistical areas together given they are significantly skewed by defensive players. Looking first at repeat offenders, there is no denying the impact of Karin Burger with the Tactix goal defence arguably in the form of her career with no doubt that she will continue rising with more time in the position. Leading intercepts with 48 to her name, ranking second both deflections (69) and rebounds (27) and fourth in penalties (189, averaging about 11 per game), Burger has become a really well-rounded defender with her ability to not only impact on the contest, but also do so cleanly, with partner in crime Jane Watson leading the deflection tally on 78 (4.6 per match) and just over six penalties per game credit to her ability to stay away from the whistle. Taneisha Fifita is the only other player to rank across all four categories, finishing her season with an equal fourth-ranked 25 intercepts (with Kelera Nawai and Kate Heffernan – the only midcourter on any defensive stats list), equal fourth-ranked 63 deflections (with Erena Mikaere) and 19 rebounds to her name, and also tidying up her act this season with 221 penalties across her 16 games (13.8 per game). Mikaere also finished fifth for penalties (177). When it comes to players ranking outside the top five for penalties, there is no denying the impact or scintillating form of Mystics’ Sulu Fitzpatrick, whose cleanliness and ability to contest saw her rank equal fifth for intercepts (21, as did Kelly Jury) and deflections (58), while topping the table for rebounds with 30 to her name. In fact, Fitzpatrick averaged just 7.25 penalties per game, going above and beyond to lead her side to a grand final victory. On the other end of the penalty scale, Anna Harrison came out of retirement and was a force to be reckoned with throughout the season, topping the penalty tally with 226 to her name (averaging 15 per game), but ranked second for intercepts (39) and third for deflections (66), as Elle Temu also came from nowhere to find plenty of turnover ball, registering 35 intercepts and 18 rebounds for the season.
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