ANZ Premiership Review: Mainland Tactix

THE Mainland Tactix had an inconsistent season to say the least getting an early win on the table but quickly fell away unable to take it up to the top two teams. They proved that their best was good enough with convincing wins over the Northern Stars and Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic.

Ladder: 5th
Win-loss: 5-10
Percentage: 87.2%

Led by captain Jane Watson down in defence she worked tirelessly to regain possession for the Tactix and provide that spark time and time again. Her intensity and defensive pressure over the shot made her an ominous threat for opposition sides while her timing and deceptive speed also caused havoc sitting second and third for deflections, intercepts and rebounds with 96, 40 and 30 respectively. The talented goal keeper also showed her versatility occasionally swapping out to goal defence and plying her trade there. Her partnership with Sophia Fenwick and Kate Lloyd also developed throughout the season with the three all working on their craft and combination in defence to create turnovers and cause confusion. Though Fenwick drew a lot of attention from the umpire with 168 penalties to her name her ability to skill to win ball back made her a focal part of the Tactix defence with 55 deflections for the season.

With the defence end holding up well, it was the transition through the midcourt that at times caused headaches with the Tactix unable to capitalise on turnover ball. Centre, Kimiora Poi played an influential role across the court using her dynamic footwork and speed to zip around the court and hustle for prime feeding position on the circle edge. Her vision into the circle was also second to none delivering well weighted passes to create scoring opportunities for her side. Poi racked up 303 feeds for the season while teammate Samon Nathan showcased her handy work around the circle with 348 feeds. Though the wing attack position chopped and changed throughout the season Nathan played an integral role coming out hard at the centre pass with 263 receives and creating good space in the attacking third for the Tactix. Brooke Leaver displayed her versatility switching between wing attack and goal attack making her an exciting and damaging prospect for opposition sides given her netball nous. In wing defence Charlotte Elley made that position her own using her footwork to block her opponent from getting to circle edge and applying good hands over pressure.

Up the shooting end Ellie Bird proved to be a revelation with the imposing shooter using her height to her full advantage under the post. At 196cm the goal shooter was a constant in the goal circle with her strong holds and clever footwork providing easy avenue to goal. The rotation out in goal attack did not seem to faze her with a bulk of the ball coming to her given her accuracy and volume with 579 goals at 90 per cent for the season. Australian, Kate Beveridge showcased her experience and composure throughout the season working the ball around the circle edge and going to post when needed.

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