26/02/2024

Queensland Firebirds will be looking for consistency in their remaining two Suncorp Super Netball games. (Photo: Queensland Firebirds Facebook)

State of Origin is the vibe right now and that feeling continues in Suncorp Super Netball when the Queensland Firebirds welcome top-of-the-table NSW Swifts to Nissan Arena in Round 13.

In a State v State clash the Firebirds – who are out of finals contention, will be looking to test themselves against the Swifts who are the best team in the competition sitting top of the ladder.

The Firebirds will be looking to finish the season strong and climb the standings, eyeing a fifth-place finish to take momentum into the off-season.

Queensland Firebirds young gun Ashlee Unie. (Photo: Queensland Firebirds Facebook)

“It’s going to be a really exciting game this Sunday,” Firebirds head coach Bec Bulley said.

“We are coming up against the top of the table, but also for us, we are sitting seventh on the ladder, but equal fifth.

“We’d love to get the win and move up that ladder.”

It has been marked improvement from the Firebirds in the past two rounds, picking up back-to-back wins for the first time this season – including a 77-71 win over finals-bound Melbourne Vixens.

Furthermore, the Firebirds completed a season sweep of GIANTS Netball after a 68-50 win in Round 11 which has given the group confidence heading into the final two games.

“We took a lot of confidence from our win last week against the Vixens,” Bulley continued.

“They are [a] quality side and we managed to put our four quarters together, which was what our aim has been all season. I think [the] last time we played the Vixens it was really only one quarter that let us down.

“So, we were wrapped to get the win, but also have that consistency across the game.”

More Netball News

Thunderbirds get finals boost with captain’s return

Analysis: How will the final two rounds of Suncorp Super Netball play out?

‘It’s the best club in the world’: The rise of Vixens’ Kate Eddy

There is an added level of pressure and energy in a rivalry game, two teams that want to get that important win and bragging rights for another week.

In their Round 3 meeting, the Firebirds fell 74-71 to the Swifts, playing well the Firebirds took confidence from that game, showing they could match it with the best in the competition.

“Last time we played Swifts I think we lost by three goals,” Bulley said.

“But we were playing so well, I think we were up at halftime, it was again just a little patch in that fourth quarter that they just got away from us, so we were really disappointed.

“We know that we can match it with them, we have just got to execute the gameplan for the four quarters.

“The Swifts are doing a great job at the moment they are playing exceptionally well; however, we will match up against them very well too.”

The Firebirds will be greeted by a sold-out capacity crowd at Nissan Arena on Sunday, which will be their final home game for the season.

Off the back of two wins and big home support, the Firebirds will be looking to continue their winning ways against their southern state rivals.

Bulley will once again face her former team on Sunday, the team that propelled her coaching career.

“Playing the Swifts, it’s always great fun coming up against your old team,” she said.

“There’s a bit of rivalry, you know what the players do, of course, you want to play well against them.

“I have so much respect for Briony [Akle], I learnt so much from her, I think it will be a great battle though.

“I think for us it’s really exciting to be playing at our home stadium in front of a sold-out home crowd, like it’s going to be incredible, and I think that support will go a long way in getting us across the line.”

Subscribe to our newsletter!

About Author