2023 SSN | Round 6 preview: Table top clash highlights jam packed weekend
THE 2023 Suncorp Super Netball Season is moving faster than a centre down a netball court, and we are almost at the halfway point of the season already.
This weekend’s action certainly has plenty of tantalising matchups, and plenty of thoughts to ponder across all four games.
The weekend begins tomorrow night with the first match in the Sargent-McKinnis Cup for 2023 when the Swifts host the Vixens who are on the road for a second week in a row.
The Swifts will come into this clash with a boost of confidence after the way they won against the Lightning last weekend, and because they face a Vixens side who were comprehensively rattled last week in the City of Churches.
However, the Vixens are the kind of team that will bounce back with a vengeance from a performance like the one they had last week.
The midcourt battle is sure to be a fiery one, with a number of Diamonds including Maddy Proud, Paige Hadley and Kate Moloney in there. One player who will be interesting to watch this week is Liz Watson and how she bounces back from a rare bad performance last week.
Moving on to Sunday and the double header begins with the clash that arguably is the one with the last fan fare heading into the weekend as the GIANTS head up the east coast to take on the Firebirds.
The Firebirds almost pulled off the most unlikely of upset wins last week, and they host a GIANTS side arguably still trying to find their feet a bit this season. However, a GIANTS win could mean they jump into the top four if results go a certain way.
Moving onto the second game of the double header, and over the other side of the country it is the top of the table clash between the Fever and Thunderbirds. Many people tipped this to be the two teams that will go on to make this year’s Grand Final, so this weekend’s clash could be a Grand Final preview.
There is a matchup up each end of the court that is sure to leave the crowd highly entertained.
Up one end it is the battle of Jamaican team mates Jhaniele Fowler and Shamera Sterling, and up the other end it is Courtney Bruce who will have to try and stop the dominant Eleanor Cardwell. Many fans are already talking about how tantalising the Bruce v Cardwell match up will be, all the while forgetting that Fowler vs Sterling is arguably going to be even more entertaining.
The final match of the weekend is not until Tuesday when the Magpies host the Lightning in the first ever SSN match on Anzac Day.
Both teams are having very similar topsy turvy seasons, so this clash should be quite an even, yet interesting battle.
There will be battles up both ends of the court in this clash that are sure to delight biased and neutral fans alike.
Diamonds’ shooting combination Cara Koenen and Steph Wood will sure have a tough battle trying to get past Geva Mentor and the very in form Jodi-Ann Ward, while Shimona Nelson will not have an easy afternoon against fellow Jamaican Kadie-Ann Dehaney, and neither will Sophie Garbin against Karla Pretorius.
SSN Round 6 Fixture (All times local)
NSW Swifts vs Melbourne Vixens – Saturday at 7pm – Ken Rosewall Arena
Queensland Firebirds vs GIANTS Netball – Sunday at 2pm – Nissan Arena
West Coast Fever vs Adelaide Thunderbirds – Sunday at 2pm – RAC Arena
Collingwood Magpies vs Sunshine Coast Lightning – Tuesday at 1pm – John Cain Arena