The Victorian 21/U team will today battle it out against South Australia for the 2014 National Netball Championships title in Adelaide.
After a week of round robin action, Victoria fought off a determined New South Wales to win its semi-final by four goals and set up a rematch of last year’s 21/U Grand Final against South Australia.
Several times during the game Victoria threatened to run away with the match, but a resolute NSW refused to lie down, coming back from a five-goal deficit early in the last quarter to trail by just one with five minutes left.
However, Victoria steadied and finished the match off strongly to claim its second win over NSW for the week and give itself another chance of winning the shield.
Victorian coach Kristy Keppich-Birrell said her team was ready to take on the hosts state in today’s Grand Final.
“We’ve been preparing for it, we’re ready,” she declared.
“There was only five goals in the last one (match on day 2) and we’ve got better, so I’m really looking forward to that.
“The game is going to be a great physical and mental battle as well, because they’re all really fatigued.
“It’s been a brilliant week on and off the court. Our team are working consistently hard to improve in everything they do to be united, relentless and professional and most of all intimidating.”
“The highlights of the week have been the defensive pressure we have exerted in both one on one and formation defence. We have also improved on our long court link and our decision making through court.
“We are looking forward to it being a hard fought skillful match. On paper the baby Thunderbirds should win, but they haven’t counted on the want and the will of this very special Victorian team. Our basic skills, match fitness, creativity and persistence are what will bring the gold home.”