Kuhl set to take tough challenge

By RACHAEL BORICH

RUNAWAYS Diamonds netballer Alysha Kuhl is ready to step up to the finals challenge at Rockhampton's Jardine Park tonight.

The elusive goal defence, who is always ready to pounce on an intercept opportunity, will have her work cut out in the Senior A division preliminary final against Wanderers.

Runaways have a young, but talented, circle defence with Kuhl, 18, working with Keanna Hopkins, 17, who is in her first year of Senior A netball.

"She's (Hopkins) had no trouble picking it up this year,'' Kuhl said.

"It's the first year we've played together and she's been awesome ? she listens to me.''

Their opposition contains far more experience between goal shooter Tanya Flamank and former Queensland age representative, goal attack Angela Horn.

"I have to work on keeping Ang out of the circle and we'll be working on a few things at training,'' Kuhl said.

"If we can get our shots in and our defence is doing good enough we should be right.''

Wanderers should come out firing after last week's seven-goal loss to Buckaneers Blades in the major semi-final.

Runaways received an early fright in last week's 42-24 semifinal win over Brothers Crimson after the pre-game favourites clung to a one-goal lead at half-time.

"It was a bit of a shock,'' Kuhl said.

Kuhl, who previously played for Brothers, returned to netball this season after being unavailable last year.

In these teams' previous meetings Runaways produced a thrilling 43-41 win on July 6 following Wanderers' 50-34 win on April 27.

The winner of tonight's game meets Buckaneers Blades in the grand final on Saturday.



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