Positional analysis: Jury v. Fakahokotau (GK)

CONTINUING on from the Suncorp Super Netball (SSN), postseason content, Draft Central has decided to broaden the horizon of the positional analysis series and take into account players from other competitions such as the Vitality Netball Superleague (VNSL) and ANZ Premiership. With the goal shooter position already done, the next position under the microscope is goal keeper, focusing on a couple of New Zealanders in Kelly Jury and Temalisi Fakahokotau.

Kelly Jury

Recovering from a shoulder injury that plagued her 2019 season, Jury was in full flight throughout her 2020 campaign with Central Pulse using her long limbs to full advantage. She is an exciting young prospect that has steadily developed her repertoire as a shut down goal keeper with her skill to minimise her opponent’s influence on the scoreboard and rack up her fair share of ball. Jury is a menace in the air with her 192cm frame enabling her to get constant hands to ball while her quick footwork allows her to cover the court deceptively well for her size. There is no denying that Jury is renowned for her hands over pressure and lean over the shot, often able to get a tip on the shot credit to her impressive balance and long reach. The 24-year-old has proven that she can come out of the circle and hunt the ball but does some her best damage when focusing on repelling the ball from entering into the goal circle, able to get up high to the loopy passes.

Temalisi Fakahokotau

Similar to Jury on the injury front, Fakahokotau was on the mend from a serious anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury in 2020, however she did not let that stop her from attacking each contest with great tenacity and commitment. A strong physical presence under the post, Fakahokotau also displayed her clear intent to hunt any cross court ball and create doubt in the mind of the attackers. She has exceptional athleticism able to use her leap to spring into the air and pick off intercepts or create tips and deflections time and time again. The former Mainland Tactix defender is a star in her own right, using her quick change of direction and deceptively long arms to cause havoc down back and create multiple opportunities to turnover ball. Fakahokotau is an intimidating figure given her boisterous nature on court, often known for her ability to bark orders from down back and dictate the play with ease.


Both keepers are lynchpins for their respective sides and can be counted on to stand up to the pressure and deliver, credit to their go-get-it attitude and overall netball nous. They are often the last line of defence and have the capacity to absorb the pressure of repeat entries into the goal circle such is their respectiver high stamina and output. There is not much splitting the two in terms of experience with Fakahokotau two years older but out of action for a period of time with a knee injury sidelining her.

The two boast extremely different styles with Fakahokotau recognised for her ability to go out hunting and pick off intercepts with her flashy nature while Jury is more of that traditional style goal keeper that controls the defensive circle. The 10cm height differential between the two also explains the difference in the way the they go about their business with Jury utilising her taller stature to be a commanding figure while Fakahokotau uses her leap to get hands to ball. The latter is also more of an explosive player, able to burst out of the blocks or take that screamer of an intercept thanks to her sheer athleticism and flair.

Rebounding is a key characteristic in both Jury and Fakahokotau’s game play with the two able to box out their opponents and use their body positioning to reel in a number of errant shots. Fakahokotau has great elevation and timing able to get up over the top of her opponents. In contrast, Jury is more of a positional style defender that uses her footwork to claim prime rebounding position and then unleashes the long arms to juggle the missed shots and claim the rebounds.

Throughout the ANZ Premiership season, the new Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic recruit in  Fakahokotau mustered up 16 rebounds while Jury recorded 14 highlighting their prowess under the post. Regaining possession did not seem to be an issue for either player with Fakahokotau amassing 22 intercepts and 20 pickups along with a whopping 70 deflections highlighting her read of the play and court coverage to create multiple chances to stop the opposition in their tracks. For the premiership winning defender in Jury, the 24-year-old managed to reel in 26 intercepts – four more than her competitor – 17 pickups and 47 deflections. The difference in deflections is somewhat of a reflection in the way the two approach the game with Fakahokotau looking to attack the ball and ball carrier, while Jury is more of a stay at home goal keeper that applies immense pressure inside the defensive goal circle.

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