Home / World News / Melbourne Vixens co-captain Liz Watson says they’re mentally refreshed ahead of Super Netball grand final

Melbourne Vixens co-captain Liz Watson says they’re mentally refreshed ahead of Super Netball grand final

Melbourne co-captain Liz Watson hopes a week’s break as Super Netball minor premiers helps get the jump on the fast-starting West Coast Fever in Sunday’s grand final.

Watson said the biggest advantage of earning the rest while the Fever smashed Sunshine Coast Lightning by 14 goals to claim the other grand final berth, was the mental refresh after such a hectic Super Netball season, played almost entirely in Queensland.

She said they would need it against the Fever, who finished the season with six wins from their final eight games.

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“They’re definitely peaking at the right time of the year,” Watson said.

“In our last game against them we let them get ahead by 14 goals but we were really proud of the effort that we could bring that back to a draw.

“Obviously in a grand final we don’t want that happening so our start has been spoken about.

“But the confidence of this team was that we’ve shown that we can win from different scenarios, whether we’ve had a good start or have had to grind out a game and that’s going to go a long way in this match.”

The Diamonds midcourt ace said the Vixens had a scratch match last Friday afternoon and would be at full fitness for the Brisbane decider.

Fever goal shooter Jhaniele Fowler was the focal point against the Lightning with 60 goals from 62 attempts, backing up from a stunning 55 from 56 in the semi-final.

Watson said it wasn’t just the job of Vixens defenders Emily Mannix and Jo Weston to stop the Jamaican sharp-shooter.

Melbourne Vixens co-captain Liz Watson are mentally refreshed ahead of their grand final against West Coast Fever.
Camera IconMelbourne Vixens co-captain Liz Watson are mentally refreshed ahead of their grand final against West Coast Fever. Credit: Albert Perez/Getty Images

“I love our goal-keepers but pretty much as soon as the ball is on the circle edge it’s very hard to get a touch or a tip,” Watson said about stopping Fowler.

“It is that full court defence that everyone talks about in stopping Fever.

“We need to have that attacking mindset in defence and not sitting back and letting them dictate where they want to go and want to pass because once the ball is in Fowler’s hands she will pretty much shoot from anywhere in the circle.

“We’ve got to keep the ball out of their goal third because they do feed it from pretty much that whole area.”

The match will be the last for retiring Vixens shooters Caitlin Thwaites and Tegan Philip but Watson said the pair didn’t want make the title match about their last hurrah.

“They announced it a few weeks ago so their main focus could be the final three weeks and it’s good they want to put it all aside and focus on Sunday.”

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