NET­BALL Stick­ing to what they know

WAAIA BACK­ING OWN GAME RATHER THAN TAR­GET­ING KATUNGA MATCH-UPS TO WIN STRAIGHT INTO GRANNY

Shepparton News - - SPORT - By Lauren Bordin

Picola District Net­ball League’s yard­stick team Waaia storms back into ac­tion in Satur­day’s sec­ond semi-fi­nal against Katunga.

The Bombers may have had a week off, but en­sured some nor­mal­ity re­mained with a train­ing run on Satur­day.

Hav­ing had a look at the two fi­nals played dur­ing the break, the Bombers know what they are up against with the Swans.

Nikki Foster’s side has won all three en­coun­ters this year, the first com­pre­hen­sively with the re­main­ing two a lot closer af­fairs, although the Bombers were not at full strength.

For the first time this year Waaia en­ters a game on the end of a loss, its only one for the year.

The Bombers lost to Tungamah in the last week of the reg­u­lar sea­son, as the Bears gained a jump early with a fi­nals po­si­tion on the line.

But Foster has 10 fit play­ers at her dis­posal, mean­ing there is a suit­able op­po­nent for each com­bi­na­tion Katunga tries.

‘‘Come fi­nals, it’s just go­ing to be match-ups on the day, some peo­ple get nervy when it comes to fi­nals, so it de­pends on the day,’’ she said.

‘‘We’ve made ab­so­lutely no plans, a per­son you think you can rely on may just crum­ble and weaker ones might step up to lead the team.’’

The Bombers are not lack­ing in ex­pe­ri­ence with He­len Plat­t­fuss, Laura Ca­hoon and Blaise Mor­timer among the re­li­able con­tin­gent.

With the ad­di­tion of Emma McDon­ald from Nathalia, the mid­court has con­tin­ued to strengthen this sea­son.

Com­ing into the sec­ond week of fi­nals, Waaia has a sec­ond chance should it lose a sec­ond straight game.

‘‘We don’t try to match peo­ple, we’ll play what we know and hope­fully it comes out way, but if it doesn’t, it doesn’t, there’s a sec­ond chance avail­able even though you don’t want to use it,’’ Foster said.

But Aimee Side­bot­tom is hop­ing to cause an up­set, prey­ing on the un­pre­dictable nature of fi­nals.

Katunga also has the luck of the draw on its side, with the game con­tested at its home courts.

The Swans played one of their strong­est games in a month to de­feat Dookie United by five goals in the qual­i­fy­ing fi­nal, with an added level needed if they are to de­feat the Bombers and progress straight into the premier­ship de­cider.

Hav­ing lost to Katunga last week, Dookie United will use its sec­ond chance against Shepparton East in Sun­day’s first semi-fi­nal at Ren­nie.

The Ea­gles have trou­bled Jodie Flem­ing’s side dur­ing the sea­son, but United has the skill set to match up against last year’s grand fi­nal­ists.

● Deni Rovers have an­other chance to meet Tocumwal in the grand fi­nal for the third con­sec­u­tive year.

Hav­ing lost to the Bloods last week in the sec­ond semi-fi­nal, the Rovers will be look­ing to en­sure the ri­valry con­tin­ues.

Blighty has aims to stand in the Rovers’ way, but will have to de­feat them on their home court in the pre­lim­i­nary fi­nal.

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