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Constellation Cup about revenge for wounded Australia

Still stinging from the World Cup loss, Diamonds coach Lisa Alexander has made it clear the Constellation Cup netball series against the Silver Ferns is not about blooding players for the future.

The Diamonds lost their world title to the Silver Ferns in July, having lost Commonwealth Games champion status to England last year.

Australia have only lost one Constellation Cup series since its inception in 2010, holding it for the last six years, and Alexander says they won't be giving it up without a mighty fight.

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Karin Burger, Shannon Saunders and Jane Watson all agreed they play the game for pride and passion - not prizes. Source: 1 NEWS

There are four new players in the Australian squad with Ash Brazill and Tegan Phillip joined by possible debutantes Maddy Turner and Laura Scherian.

But Alexander said she couldn't promise all squad members would get a run over the four-game series, which starts in Christchurch on Sunday.

"I've made it clear to the group that this is not a school tournament and in many respects we're not blooding for the future either because this is the end of the cycle," Alexander told AAP.

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The legendary former New Zealand coach assesses the victory. Source: 1 NEWS

"We want to win all four games and if that means the same seven players on the court for all four Tests I'm not making any apologies for that."

Alexander said the team would be motivated by the one-point World Cup final defeat in Liverpool.

"The pain felt from the loss will always filter through; it's what we do with it and how we process that counts," she said.

"I've reminded the players that we can use that to help drive us for this next cycle and this competition now is to get back on top and win."

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The group was officially welcomed at the Beehive today with a pōwhiri. Source: 1 NEWS

The Silver Ferns have drafted in Collingwood's general manager of women's sport Jane Woodlands-Thompson, who also coached the Adelaide Thunderbirds to two ANZ Championship titles, as an assistant coach.

The "intriguing" appointment didn't appear to sit well with Alexander.

"I found it surprising because of her job at Collingwood, I didn't think she'd have time to do this as well," she said.

"All the best to Jane but she will be considered to be a Kiwi now."

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A return to the old domestic structure could be seen again, says Jennie Wyllie. Source: 1 NEWS


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