Sunshine Coast Lightning's goal keeper Phumza Maweni in action against the NSW Swifts last year. Photo Patrick Woods / Sunshine Coast Daily.
Sunshine Coast Lightning's goal keeper Phumza Maweni in action against the NSW Swifts last year. Photo Patrick Woods / Sunshine Coast Daily.

‘Headless’ Lightning to address slow start

While they saved their best for last, Sunshine Coast Lightning’s first quarter of netball for 2020 has been described as stuff of schoolgirls.

Lightning were slow to get out of the blocks in the season opener against the Queensland Firebirds, coughing up a 10-point buffer.

But thanks to superb shooting from Steph Wood, Lightning were able to turn the tide in the second quarter to eventually secure a 66-48 win on the road.

Coach Kylee Byrne said she would much prefer a faster start.

“Being the first game of the Super Netball for 2020, there was a lot of excitement and adrenaline going, plenty of nerves as well,” Bryne said.

“Everyone was running around with their heads cut off which reminded me of junior netball.

“But it’s all stuff we can easily fix.”

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Bryne said the Queensland Firebirds were traditionally fast starters so the weekend had been about weathering the storm.

“I would like a better start. We have talked about it and will address it,” she said.

“I have to say I wasn’t worried at all. I knew this team had it to come back, as we have done before.”

South African defensive star Phumza Maweni said the intensity of the first quarter caught them off-guard.

However, she was impressed with how Lightning wrestled control back to record a comfortable win.

“We controlled the ball very well and kept the ball in hand, I think we used it well as a team,” Maweni said.

“Obviously being the first game, the first 10 minutes were frustrating.

“But we calmed down well and helped each other to do what we worked on.

“Even with the new rules nothing changed for us, we kept out netball normal.

“We did well to shut them down but it came naturally to us.”

Rounds 2 and 3 of the 2020 Super Netball competition have today been confirmed, with netball fans set to be treated to eight matches in five days.

With all eight Suncorp Super Netball teams having now made their way to Queensland, where majority of the season will be played, the league will make its way onto screens around Australia and the world four days a week.



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