Whitney Souness did not look at all out of place when playing goal attack during the the pre-season tournament. Photo: Adrian Watkins

After two ANZ Premierships in a row, can the Central Pulse go again despite the loss of Karin Burger to the runners up?

What to expect for 2021

After back-to-back premierships in the 2019 and 2020 seasons, there are no reasons for the Pulse to expect anything less than another highly successful year. 

The loss of Silver Ferns’ Karin Burger to the Tactix will hurt their defense, however Pulse fans will take comfort in the fact that Katrina Rore and Kelly Jury will continue to provide the side a strong defensive backbone.

The Pulse will also be hoping in-circle defender Parris Manson can transition to the elite level seamlessly. 

Midcourter Maddy Gordon will look to continue her meteoric rise to stardom, after an MVP performance in the Grand Final in 2020.

Gordon moves comfortably between centre and wing defense, however has developed an ability to play wing attack in recent seasons. 

Aliyah Dunn will be required to continue her accurate shooting, which has been the best in the league over the past two seasons with 92 per cent (2019) and 91 per cent (2020) respectively. A strong rebounder, Dunn ensures second chances are consistently scored. 

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Biggest factor for success

After winning the 2020 premiership, Central Pulse farewelled their head coach, Yvette McCausland-Durie.

Going into the 2021 season, Gail Parata will be leading the side, hoping to continue on the dynasty that is developing at the Pulse. 

Parata returns to the Pulse after a six year stint as the coach of the Scottish Thimbles, and two seasons as the Pulse’s assistant coach in 2011-12 during the trans-Tasman league era. 

With a new coach taking over a successful system, there may be the temptation to try to leave the winning formula alone.

However, if Parata is to continue the success that her predecessor had, she will need to bring across her expertise that saw Scotland make two World Cups and a Commonwealth Games during her tenure. 

Last Season: Premiers

Off Season Player Movement

Out: Karin Burger, Tiana Metuarau, Elle Temu, Renee Savai’inaea

In: Paris Lokotui, Parris Manson, Te Amo Amaru-Tibble, Whitney Souness

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