Bluebirds' Julie Dunbar has the pass covered during their game against Frenchville Brumbies on Wednesday night.
Bluebirds' Julie Dunbar has the pass covered during their game against Frenchville Brumbies on Wednesday night. Allan Reinikka

Defensive skills help Brumbies win

IT WAS a night for tight scores in the Rockhampton Leagues Club A-grade competition at Jardine Park on Wednesday.

The Frenchville Brumbies took on the Bluebird Hawks in the main match, with Brumbies stealing a six-point lead.

The game was only the team's second proper round completed, with the Brumbies already looking to be a benchmark team for this year's competition.

While the side has talent all over the court, it is a daunting task for opponents to try to break through its tight defence.

"Keanna Hopkins returned to the side this week, slotting into goal keeper," Brumbies coach Sonia Cooper said.

"She brings experience to the team and played really well, helping our team in the defensive circle."

While respecting their opposition's abilities, Cooper was confident her defenders could match their opponents for pace and limit their impact.

"We are really strong in our defensive end. They are who primarily won the game for us."

With the Brumbies claiming a not-so-easy win, Cooper said they still had a lot to improve on.

"It wasn't that it was a bad game, but I do think there are more things we need to work on than what we did right," she said yesterday.

"We need to work on our passing and talking, getting back to the basics of netball."

Despite the need for improvement, Cooper was impressed with her side's final quarter, relying upon its defence for quick turn-overs.

"We had less turn-overs, which was good," she said. "We were turning over the ball towards our end of the game.

"Although our passing still wasn't all that accurate, we worked hard to get the ball back."

Taking no credit away from her opposition, Cooper said she admired Bluebirds' strong centre court.

"They had a really strong centre court. They were really powerful through the middle," she said.

This year Brumbies have gained several new and former players.

"A couple of girls have returned, we have a few newbies and we have our old-timers," she said.

"We are a bit all over the shop and are still learning each others' strengths and weaknesses.

"It will take a little while before we can all easily work together."

The Brumbies are ultimately competing in the competition in search of the premiership win but know they must step it up in order to claim their prize.

"We will have some losses but by the end of our season hopefully we can be up there contending with the higher-ranked teams," Cooper said.

Brumbies will continue training over the Easter break, returning to netball fixtures in two weeks.



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