Steel beat the Magic in high scoring ANZ Premiership shootout in Hamilton

The Southern Steel has beaten the Casey Kopua-less Waikato BOP Magic 76-60 in a high-scoring ANZ Premiership shootout tonight in Hamilton

Steel mid-courter Gina Crampton was named MVP for the match on a great night for the shooters with the Magic making 95 per cent of their attempts while the Steel finished at 94 per cent.

Steel goal-shoot Jen O’Connell finished with 53 goals from 55 attempts while her partner in the shooting circle, Te Paea Selby-Rickit, finished with 23 goals from 26 attempts.

For the Magic, goal-shoot Lenize Potgieter completed a perfect night with 41 goals from 41 attempts while Monica Falkner finished with 19 goals from 22 attempts.

Kopua said in the pre-game that her lower leg injury was not her Achilles but didn’t go into further detail.

Steel goal shoot Jennifer O'Connell takes a pass under pressure from Magic goal defense Katherine Levien during the ANZ Premiership netball match - Magic v Steel played at Claudelands Arena, Hamilton, New Zealand on 9 July 2018.

Copyright photo: © Bruce Lim / www.photosport.nz
Jennifer O'Connell had 53 goals from 55 attempts. Source: Photosport

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Silver Ferns star Maria Folau signs with Adelaide Thunderbirds for 2019 season

The Adelaide Thunderbirds have won the race to sign New Zealand shooting sensation Maria Folau for the 2019 Super Netball season.

The Silver Ferns star had initially been linked to teams in Queensland and Sydney, but will bring much-needed star power to the struggling Adelaide side.

Folau, 31, said she was excited to join the Thunderbirds, having previously played for the Northern Mystics in the New Zealand league.

"It will be a new team, new dynamics, new playing styles, so this is a real game-changer for me to challenge myself and play the best netball that I can," she said.

"The club has a great history - it's an awesome opportunity to be part of that success again."

Folau played about half of the Mystics' 2018 games after moving to Sydney last year to be with her husband, Australian rugby superstar Israel Folau.

Netball New Zealand has granted her a 12-month exemption, meaning she is still eligible to play for the Silver Ferns in 2019 despite no longer being contracted to a New Zealand Premiership team.

Coach Tania Obst said Folau was a "significant signing", after the Thunderbirds failed to win a single game in the recently-completed campaign.

"I'm most excited about the wealth of experience, the world-class quality that Maria will bring to our team and the contribution that she'll be able to make to our team both on and off the court," Obst said.

"Maria is an incredible player, a superior athlete and sets the Adelaide Thunderbirds up for a strong, successful and competitive season."

Folau joins several other international Thunderbirds signings, including English players Layla Guscoth and Beth Cobden and Jamaican goalkeeper Shamera Sterling.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 23:  Maria Folau of the Silver Ferns passes the ball during the Quad Series International Test match between the Australian Diamonds and the New Zealand Silver Ferns at Hisense Arena on September 23, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Mike Owen/Getty Images)
Maria Folau of the Silver Ferns passes the ball during the Quad Series International Test match between the Australian Diamonds and the New Zealand Silver Ferns at Hisense Arena in Melbourne. Source: Getty

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'We were exposed in some areas' - Silver Ferns coach on loss to Australia

Silver Ferns coach Noeline Taurua believes her side is on the improve, after they went down 60-55 to Australia in the Quad Series in Melbourne yesterday.

Taurua said there was a lot to learn from in their match against the Diamonds and that her team will continue to improve.

"We were exposed in some areas and we weren't competitive, but it is great to be exposed by such a great team," said Taurua.

"It highlights our areas of maybe selection, plus also maybe in what we need to do in regards to strategy."

Early in the fourth quarter the Silver Ferns found themselves behind by ten-points, but they fought back to lose within five-points of their trans-Tasman rivals.

"Overall us coming away, probably with that score-line lets us know we are working in the right direction.

"These little things that will make a big difference to our game."

Noeline Taurua said her side are still learning and is confident they will get better following their 60-55 loss to the Diamonds in Melbourne. Source: 1 NEWS

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Silver Ferns show true grit in loss to Diamonds, Australia win Quad Series

Former basketballer Gretel Tippett has helped Australia wrap up the four-nations netball Quad Series with a 60-55 win over New Zealand at Melbourne Arena.

The Diamonds completed a clean sweep to finish ahead of England, New Zealand and South Africa and underlined their status as world No.1.

While the Australians led at every break, the Silver Ferns showed they are back on track under new coach Noeline Taurua after just three weeks in the role.

Tippett only took up netball as an 18-year-old when she was looking to improve her fitness as she returned to the WNBL after a bout of glandular fever.

In her first start of the series, replacing injured goal attack Stephanie Wood, Tippett showed her athleticism to form a strong combination in the circle with Diamonds captain Caitlin Bassett.

The younger sister of former AFL star Kurt Tippett, the 25-year-old finished with 14 goals, shooting at 100 per cent, while Bassett led the scoring for the home team with 46 goals from 50 attempts.

The teams went almost point for point in the opening quarter before the Diamonds broke away for a five-goal margin.

They maintained that lead at halftime despite the best efforts of New Zealand goal attack Maria Folau, who had her best game of the series.

Teenage goal shooter Aliyah Dunn chimed in with 10 goals from 10 attempts in the final quarter while veteran midcourter Laura Langman looked sharp after returning to the New Zealand team after a two-year absence.

The lead went out to 10 early in the final quarter but the Diamonds struggled to put their opponents away and the Kiwis cut that margin in half with two minutes to play.

The Australians held on but there were definite signs their long-standing rivalry has resumed.


Undefeated Australian Diamonds overcome gritty Silver Ferns to win Quad Series

Relive 1 NEWS NOW's live coverage of today's Quad Series match between the Silver Ferns and the Australian Diamonds in Melbourne.

FULLTIME - SILVER FERNS 55 AUSTRALIA 60

Australia has won the Quad Series, but there is a lot of positives to take out of that match for New Zealand.

QUARTER 4 - 58 mins - SILVER FERNS 53 AUSTRALIA 58

Time is running out for the Silver Ferns, but they have shown great fight to get back into the Test.

QUARTER 4 - 55 mins - SILVER FERNS 50 AUSTRALIA 55

Jane Watson makes another great read and secures a sensational turnover for New Zealand.

QUARTER 4 - 52 mins - SILVER FERNS 45 AUSTRALIA 50

The Diamonds hand the ball back to the Silver Ferns as they are called for being out of bounds. NZ close the gap to just five-points.

QUARTER 4 - 50 mins - SILVER FERNS 42 AUSTRALIA 50

INTERCEPT! Jane Watson comes up with another excellent turnover, she gets in front of her opposite and Maria Folau nails her shot at goal down the shooting circle. 

QUARTER 4 - 48 mins - SILVER FERNS 38 AUSTRALIA 48

The Diamonds have their biggest lead in the match, up ten-points against the Silver Ferns.

QUARTER 3 - 45 mins - SILVER FERNS 38 AUSTRALIA 45

HOLD BALL! Maria Folau is penalised for holding onto the ball for too long, but the siren sounds just as Australia looked to shoot at goal. New Zealand's discipline letting them down in that quarter. Australia lead by seven-points with one more quarter to go. Again it is accuracy that is letting the Silver Ferns down at the moment.

Silver Ferns captain Laura Langman takes a pass during the Netball Quad Series in a match between the Silver Ferns and South Africa at the ASB Baypark arena in Tauranga on Tuesday the 18th September 2018. Copyright Photo by Marty Melville / www.Photosport.nz
Silver Ferns captain Laura Langman takes a pass during the Netball Quad Series in a match between the Silver Ferns and South Africa at the ASB Baypark arena in Tauranga. Source: Photosport

QUARTER 3 - 43 mins - SILVER FERNS 38 AUSTRALIA 42

The Silver Ferns grind their way back into this one. They score 4/5 of their last shots at goal and close the gap within four-points.

QUARTER 3 - 40 mins - SILVER FERNS 34 AUSTRALIA 40

Jane Watson comes up with a crucial intercept for New Zealand and the Silver Ferns convert down the other end. 

QUARTER 3 - 37 mins - SILVER FERNS 32 AUSTRALIA 39

Australia now lead by seven-points with New Zealand struggling to convert the ball when they have possession. 

QUARTER 3 - 35 mins - SILVER FERNS 31 AUSTRALIA 35

Another mistake by the Ferns and they hand the ball straight back to the Diamonds.

QUARTER 3 - 32 mins - SILVER FERNS 28 AUSTRALIA 31

TURNOVER! A crucial one for New Zealand and Maria Folau converts down the other end and they have the centre pass.

HALFTIME - 30 mins - SILVER FERNS 25 AUSTRALIA 30

Australia have a 88 per cent shooting record so far in the match with New Zealand on 81 per cent inside the shooting circle. Accuracy will be key for the Ferns to fight their way back in this Test.

New Zealand are still very much in this one, New Zealand have stepped it up in physicality but the home team lead by five-points at the break.

QUARTER 2 - 28 mins - SILVER FERNS 24 AUSTRALIA 28

Poor passing from New Zealand and pressure from Australia on defence is causing all sorts of problems for the Silver Ferns.

QUARTER 2 - 25 mins - SILVER FERNS 22 AUSTRALIA 26

NZ close the gap but Australia are well in control of this match.  

QUARTER 2 - 20 mins - SILVER FERNS 17 AUSTRALIA 22

Australia string together some good phases and they lead the visitors by five-points. The Diamonds are just beating the Ferns to the punch with NZ forced to pass the ball backwards away from their shooting end.

QUARTER 2 - 17 mins - SILVER FERNS 14 AUSTRALIA 16

A great start from New Zealand as they convert three goals in a row to close the gap against the Diamonds.

QUARTER 1 - 15 mins - SILVER FERNS 11 AUSTRALIA 16

A physical battle after the first quarter, Australia are on top - ahead by five-points. A controversial call in the final second of the first quarter with umpires awarding the Diamonds a goal after the siren had sounded.

QUARTER 1 - 13 mins - SILVER FERNS  10 AUSTRALIA 14

Silver Ferns are struggling to convert in the shooting circle and Australia lead by four-points. 

QUARTER 1 - 10 mins - SILVER FERNS 9 AUSTRALIA 11

Australia retake the lead and they are really starting to click as they build a two-point lead over the Silver Ferns.

QUARTER 1 - 5 mins - SILVER FERNS 6 AUSTRALIA 5

Silver Ferns hit the lead after some good shooting by veteran Maria Folau. New Zealand looking much sharper with their combinations with Laura Langman in the midcourt. 

QUARTER 1 - 4 mins - SILVER FERNS 2 AUSTRALIA 3

Australia get a turnover of their own and lead for the first time in the match by one-point.

QUARTER 1 - SILVER FERNS 2 AUSTRALIA 0

And we are underway with Australia with possession to start match. They lose possession of the ball and NZ move the ball quickly down their shooting end. It was Katrina Grant that earned the turnover for the Silver Ferns.

TEAMS

New Zealand: Karin Burger, Gina Crampton, Aliyah Dunn, Ameliaranne Ekenasio, Maria Folau, Katrina Grant, Laura Langman (c), Te Paea Selby-Rickit, Sam Sinclair, Michaela Sokolich-Beatson, Elisapeta Toeava, Jane Watson.

Australia: Caitlin Bassett, April Brandley, Kelsey Browne, Courtney Bruce, Emily Mannix, Kimberley Ravaillion, Gabi Simpson, Caitlin Thwaites, Gretel Tippet, Liz Watson, Jo Weston, Stephanie Wood.

QUARTER 1 - 15 mins - SILVER FERNS 11 AUSTRALIA 16
QUARTER 2 - 17 mins - SILVER FERNS 14 AUSTRALIA 16
QUARTER 2 - 25 mins - SILVER FERNS 22 AUSTRALIA 26
QUARTER 2 - 28 mins - SILVER FERNS 24 AUSTRALIA 28
QUARTER 3 - 32 mins - SILVER FERNS 28 AUSTRALIA 31
QUARTER 3 - 40 mins - SILVER FERNS 34 AUSTRALIA 40
QUARTER 3 - 43 mins - SILVER FERNS 38 AUSTRALIA 42
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 23:  Maria Folau of the Silver Ferns passes the ball during the Quad Series International Test match between the Australian Diamonds and the New Zealand Silver Ferns at Hisense Arena on September 23, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Mike Owen/Getty Images)
Maria Folau of the Silver Ferns passes the ball during the Quad Series International Test match between the Australian Diamonds and the New Zealand Silver Ferns at Hisense Arena in Melbourne. Source: Getty