International Player Watch – Finals Spots Confirmed Following Final Regular SSN Round

The final round of the Suncorp Super Netball League took place this week, with all teams taking to court battling it out for those all-important finals spots.

It was a drama filled round, with the final positions being decided by the final shot in Melbourne.

Let’s see who has made it into the finals…

Giants 68 – 65 Lightning

For Giants, this weekend wasn’t about securing their finals spot as they had already done that when they beat Firebirds last weekend, however if they wanted to finish 3rd and play their minor semi-final in front of their home fans then a win was essential.

The home side worked tirelessly in the first half, to take a 14-goal advantage into the second half, and they then just about held onto the lead to finish the game 68-65.

Their win over Lightning meant that fourth place Magpies now couldn’t overtake them in the final round.

One player that stood up to the test was Giants Captain and England Rose Jo Harten, who produced a Most Valuable Player performance shotting at 92%, and scoring 45 of her 40 shots.

Despite being on the eventual losing side, Lightning and Australia Diamond shooter Cara Koenen also deserves recognition after shooting at 100% in the match, converting all 39 of her shots.

Fever 68 – 57 Thunderbirds

There was lots to celebrate for Fever in their victory over Thunderbirds this weekend, with records broken and milestones achieved.

Voice of the Athlete Working Group member and Fever and England Rose player, Stacey Francis-Bayman, was the first player to have a reason to celebrate this weekend as she made her 100th national league appearance.

Next up Jamaican Sunshine Girl and Fever shooter Jhaniele Fowler broke her own goal scoring record when she scored all 44 of her single shots and missed just one super shot all weekend, taking her tally up to 804 for the season, beating her own personal record of 795 in 2020.

Fever finish the league in second place and will now take on Vixen’s in the Major Semi Final on the 18th June.

Whilst the defeat for Thunderbirds meant that their Minor Semi-Final hopes were over.

Swifts 63 – 61 Firebirds

In the penultimate game of the round, both teams came into the clash with minor semi-finals hopes and it was Swifts that managed to keep their hopes alive with a 63-61 victory over Firebirds.

England Rose Helen Housby has been crucial for her Swifts team this season, after she lost her shooting partner Sam Wallace in Round 1 to injury, and Housby did not disappoint in this match scoring 37 out of 39 of her single shots and missing just two super shots.

However, despite their victory their spot in the semi-final still wasn’t confirmed, as they now needed table toppers Vixens to beat Magpies by more than goals in the final regular round clash of the season…

Magpies 54 – 56 Vixens

Taking it right down to the final seconds of the game, Magpies qualified for the minor-semi-final despite losing to top of the table Vixen’s, ending defending champions Swifts finals dreams.

Magpies needed to win or lose by only two goals or less in order to scrape fourth place in the league, and thanks to Vixen’s shooter Mwai Kumwenda missing her final two-point shot in the dying seconds in an attempt to extend Vixen’s lead, the Magpies semi-finals spot was confirmed.

World Netball Ambassador and England Rose, Geva Mentor, has been a key part of the Magpies side this season, and after the match she told Fox Netball: “I looked at the results and I thought it was two (goals) and we were done, then I saw Kelsey (Browne’s) face as she was like ‘no, we’ve done it’ and then that was it. Emotions? Gone,”

Coming up…

Congratulations to all those who have made it into the Major and Minor Semi-Finals.

The Major Semi-Final between Vixens and Fever, will take place on the 18th June and the Minor Semi-Final will take place between Giants and Collingwood Magpies on the 19th June.

To find out more about the finals, click here.

To view the leagues final standings, click here.

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