LEAGUE’S WARM- UP WORK­ING

Foot­ball tac­tics help cure slow starts by Fire

Townsville Bulletin - - SPORT - JON TUX­WORTH jonathon. tux­worth@ news. com. au

TOWNSVILLE Fire guard Mi­caela Cocks has re­vealed a rugby league style warm- up has been a cat­a­lyst be­hind trans­form­ing their game starts from slug­gish to slash­ing.

The Fire failed to lead at quar­ter time in their first seven games of the WNBL sea­son, but have solved the is­sue by build­ing big early leads in wins over Ade­laide and Bendigo.

Cocks, no stranger to rugby league tac­tics through her re­la­tion­ship with Cow­boys for­ward Sam Hoare, said in­tense warm- up drills with strength and con­di­tion­ing coach Brent Goriss has the team burst­ing out of the blocks.

“We’ve got a lit­tle se­cret weapon with our strength and con­di­tion­ing coach do­ing some warm- up drills with us and I think that’s re­ally been help­ing, a lit­tle bit of rugby league tac­tics,” she said.

“It’s a bit of ag­gres­sion in the warm- up and get­ting ready for the game, so we’re not com­ing out flat.

“We’re happy on the court and when you’re hav­ing fun, you play so much bet­ter.”

The Fire are brac­ing for a Lightning back­lash in Ade­laide on Satur­day af­ter­noon af­ter they trounced them 84- 42 on November 5.

“Ev­ery­one’s feel­ing re­ally good but we’re not get­ting com­pla­cent,” Cocks said.

“We know Ade­laide’s go­ing to be tough and they won’t want to have an­other loss like the last one, but we’ve got to make sure we’re above and beyond.

“I don’t know if they’ll be an­gry, but I know they’ll be much more alert.”

Fire coach Clau­dia Bras­sard ex­pected third- placed Ade­laide, coached by for­mer Townsville men­tor Chris Lu­cas, to make the nec­es­sary ad­just­ments.

“We know Chris will get his team pre­pared and they’ll change things up, no doubt,” Bras­sard said.

“We watched that Ade­laide game and it was one of those games where they couldn’t do any­thing right.

“They had brain ex­plo­sions ev­ery­where. We’re cer­tainly not ex­pect­ing that by any means this week­end.

“They’re a top four team and that’s what we’re get­ting ready for.

“We’re about to hit an­other tough part of the sea­son with a few dou­bles in a row.

“It’s re­ally im­por­tant we got the job done when we had sin­gles.”

Fire’s first quar­ters in 2017 sea­son

Mel­bourne Boomers ( a): 16- all Can­berra Capitals ( h): 17- 20 Syd­ney Flames ( h): 5- 17 Dan­de­nong Rangers ( a): 13- 17 Can­berra Capitals ( a): 24- 29 Mel­bourne Boomers ( h): 9- 12 Perth Lynx ( a): 10- 29 Ade­laide Lightning ( h): 27- 9 Bendigo Spirit ( h): 31- 16

Pic­ture: ZAK SIM­MONDS

AG­GRES­SION WORKS: Townsville Fire guard Mi­caela Cocks in ac­tion against the Ade­laide Lightning ear­lier this sea­son.

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