Round 4 of the ANZ Premiership was one of more close battles, marginal wins, and teams’ new players beginning to gel and shine.
In case you missed it, international fans can catch up on all the action now on NetballPass.
Here is our take on the international players performances this round…
Steel 49 – 54 Magic
Magic made it back-to-back victories in the ANZ Premiership, after they beat Steel 49-54.
Last round, Magic secured their first win of the season in a thrilling clash with Mystics which went to extra time, before Magic won by one in the final second.
Once again, the journey to victory wasn’t an easy one for Magic, as Steel made them work hard for the duration of the match with the result looking like it could go either way.
It was Magic’s on form New Zealand Silver Fern shooters, Bailey Mes and Ameliaranne Ekenasio, that eventually proved to be the difference as they both only missed two shots all game getting their side over the line once again.
The weekend wasn’t over for Magic at this point, as they had a double round weekend and still needed to play Tactix to finish round 4.
Tactix 50 – 49 Pulse
Next up was the closest contest of the weekend, with only one goal separating the two teams at full-time.
The first-half went goal for goal, with all eyes on Aliyah Dunn at goal shoot for Tactix as she took on her former Pulse side for the first time since leaving.
Silver Fern Dunn didn’t seemed phased by the occasion though as she continued to convert her chances, helping her side pull away slightly in the 3rd quarter, which they won by 5 goals.
Going into the final-15 minutes three goals separated the two teams, and Pulse came out firing winning the quarter, but falling just short when it came to winning the match.
One stand-out player that helped to get the win across the line for Taxtic was new-recruit and experienced England international Laura Malcolm, who put out a brilliant, consistent performance when her team needed it most.
Mystics 62 – 59 Stars
The first Northern Challenge of the season was made even bigger this weekend by it being a top of the table clash, and it was Mystics that came out on top knocking Stars out of 1st place.
As anticipated, not much separated the two sides in this match as they both went on to win two quarters each.
Having been at the losing end of an extra-time clash in Round 3, Mystics were keen not to let history repeat itself, and their hunger in the final quarter to see out the victory, despite Stars looking sharp, was very clear.
An international player that helped seal the deal for Mystics was Silver Fern shooter, Grace Nweke who converted all 46 of her shots, taking her up to third on the leagues goal scored charts and Mystics up first in the league.
Tactix 58 – 41 Magic
Finally, Tactix and Magic took to court for the second time in Round 4 and having both been victorious over the weekend it was clear from the off that they both wanted to do the double.
It was Magic that looked to have recovered better as they started the stronger of the two teams, taking a one goal lead into the first break.
However, from the second quarter onwards the tables turned with Tactix winning all three 15-minute periods by eight, three and seven goal margins.
Once again, Silver Fern Aliyah Dunn was unstoppable for the home-side converting all 43 of her shots, taking her up to second on the leagues goal scoring charts.
The Tactix attacking end seems to be getting stronger by the game, with Silver Fern Kimiora Poi and England Rose Laura Malcolm really beginning to gel and build a great connection on court.
Poi is a real threat on that circle edge, with a great eye for space and an even better feed, it is no surprise the wing attack made 18 goal assists in this match and now sits third on the leagues assists charts, with 164 to her name.
International fans can catch up on any of the action they have missed on NetballPass now.
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