A po­tent force

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - Wfl Finals - BY COURT­NEY CLOUGH

Is there any­thing worse than fin­ish­ing run­ner-up in a Wim­mera Net­ball As­so­ci­a­tion A Grade grand fi­nal?

Yep, com­ing sec­ond again the fol­low­ing year.

This is why Minyip-mur­toa must cre­ate its own luck dur­ing this year’s fi­nals se­ries.

His­tory shows the Bur­ras fell short of top­pling Hor­sham in the sea­son cli­max last year and that so far this year, they are again the pri­mary chal­lengers to Hor­sham’s dom­i­na­tion.

If the Bur­ras get to the grand fi­nal, which is a tough as­sign­ment this year, they are go­ing to have put to bed any ‘demons’ that might still be loi­ter­ing in the back of the mind and play their own game.

This year, Minyip-mur­toa has tapped into an en­vi­able ver­sa­til­ity and through the guid­ance of coach, men­tor and for­mer elite-level player Claire Drum has gal­vanised into a po­tent force. Word is, and sea­son form backs it up, the Bur­ras are se­ri­ous about get­ting to the grand fi­nal and win­ning the se­ries.

The Bur­ras ver­sa­til­ity man­i­fests it­self in the abil­ity of play­ers to swap bibs from week to week or at the changes and play in mul­ti­ple roles.

This ex­plores the idea of cre­at­ing on­court miss-matches and keeps op­po­si­tion benches guess­ing.

There is no room for com­pla­cency when play­ing Minyip-mur­toa. When we talk about the Bur­ras, the first player who comes to mind is Kirby Knight, who is a spear­head un­der the post.

Knight is an ex­am­ple of con­sis­tency in shoot­ing and is a coach’s dream. If she’s on the court, she will get the ball and shoot goals – as sim­ple as that.

She is also team­ing nicely with Jes­sica El­der, es­tab­lish­ing a work­ing rap­port based on a shared work­load and help­ing to bring out the best in up-and-com­ing young­ster Mad­di­son Mor­gan.

At the mid­court coal­face and also push­ing back in de­fence to win 50-50 con­tests is 2016 Hatcher Medal­list Ste­vie Bibby.

Bibby is one of the ex­am­ples of the Bur­ras’ ver­sa­tile in­di­vid­u­als and is work­ing strongly with solid de­fen­sive duo Ste­fanie Cooper and Paula Wie­der­mann and su­per­fit wing de­fence La­tee­sha Gas­coyne.

Of course there are also plenty of op­tions in the mid­dle through the likes of Laura De­lahunty, Bil­lie Bibby and Ash­ley Knight.

There is a lot to like about what’s hap­pen­ing at the Bur­ras. On pa­per they match up well against all other teams in the top five and in the fi­nals it will be about get­ting the for­mula right on the day.

Mem­o­ries of what hap­pened last year, cou­pled with knowl­edge es­tab­lished this sea­son that the side can beat Hor­sham, are sure to act as a ma­jor spur for this ex­cit­ing team.

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