The West Coast Fever have booked a date with the Giants after winning the sudden death final over the Sunshine Coast Lightning. (75-67)
Fever’s Verity Charles was on song today, playing arguably her best match for the season.
Charles had 50 feeds and 30 goal assists, continuing her strong on-court connection with Jhaniele Fowler that has made the Fever attack so deadly in 2021.
Coach Stacey Marinkovich spoke on how much of a key role Charles plays in the Fever’s engine room.
“When she has her work rate up and she’s taking her cuts I think she gives us a really direct passage to that circle,” Marinkovich said.
“She’s prepared to feed it on and off the circle which makes her quite a focal point.
“What I’ve really loved is the balance between her and Jess [Anstiss], and how they’re working each other into the game so when attention is given to one other the other is stepping up.”
The connection between Fowler and Charles has been a focal point for the Fever across the last couple of seasons, and Marinkovich says that it stems from their friendship off court.
“I think they’ve got a great comradery off the court, you can see that on the court with the way they communicate to each other,” she said.
“The beauty about it is when we’re at training you’ve got the likes of Emma Cosh that have really upped her work load.
“So the competitive nature of our training environment is just making sure that the players stepping out on court are keeping to a standard, and that’s what I’m loving about this entire group.”
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Both Alice Teague-Neeld and Sasha Glasgow played a key role in the match in goal attack, being able to adapt to the Lightning defenders strategies quickly.
“I think we were quite aware of the type of strategies that they could put in place and we certainly looked at that during the week,” Marinkovich said.
“We had really good balance with the ball I thought we could keep possession for a long periods of time.
“I thought our goal attacks played well strategically. I think they got themselves to the post, but they also were able to target the different defence that was happening between the one and two point periods.”
The Fever will come up against the Giants in next weekend’s preliminary final. With the Giants having won the last encounter between the two sides in Round 14, the Fever will be doing their homework going into next week’s game.
“Completely different game plan that we’ll be coming up against, so we’ve certainly got to do our homework,” Marinkovich said.
“I think it’s getting the balance of what their strength and how they move the ball, [it’s] a little bit different to a lot of the other teams and defensively they certainly work as a unit.
“We’ll look at thatm but at the end of the day we’ve got to be backing in our game plan, keep doing the hard work and keep making sure that we challenge what Giants do with our brand.”
The West Coast Fever will face the Giants on Saturday at 3pm for a spot in the Grand Final.
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