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Polishing the pass key for Pulse against Stars

May 5, 2017
Polishing the pass key for Pulse against Stars

It sounds easy enough but executing the perfect pass consistently has proved problematic and expensive for Te Wānanga o Raukawa Pulse during the ANZ Premiership netball league.

Last pass execution has been isolated as the main culprit in recent near-misses for the Pulse and the major work-on ahead of Monday night’s all-important clash against the Northern Stars in Wellington.

The Pulse were left in reflective mood after last weekend’s double-header losses which earned the team a solitary bonus point where a win and a bonus point were well within range against WBOP Magic and Southern Steel.

``We’ve just got to do more with what we’ve got and that’s been an issue for us throughout the season. Now it’s time to take stock and get it sorted,’’ coach Yvette McCausland-Durie said.

``We can compete for long periods, we can push out to a lead but we’re not pushing on. And we’ve had opportunities in every match to push on, it’s an issue that’s costing us games.’’

The problem area has tended to be on the last connecting pass either into the circle or in the circle and has come in runs of two or three, having the effect of nullifying any advantage or pushing the team further behind. It is not down to an isolated individual and doesn’t happen at any particular time.

``It’s fixable and I have real belief,’’ McCausland-Durie said. ``We knew we were going to be tested over the latest weekend and we have defined one critical area that’s letting us down, our decision-making and our last pass.’’

A happy group who are enjoying their netball, amply reflected in the positive product her team is delivering, is important for McCausland-Durie but she is also acutely aware that discipline is key to the mix of producing a more consistent and polished package.

``Real discipline and commitment to pass-execution is what we’ll be looking for against the Stars,’’ she said.

``It’s down to pass-execution, players are moving well, we’re choosing the right options, we’ve got the structures operating, but our last decision in terms of the accuracy of placement is right down to the finite line of what we’ve got to get right and that accuracy of placement is huge.’’

A nine-goal win in their first match-up against the Stars three weeks ago counts for little for McCausland-Durie who remains wary of what the Stars bring to the contest.

She describes the establishment of the new team to compete in the league this year as well balanced and one which poses threats across the court.

``They’ve got mobility in their defence end and they tracked us really tightly in the last game, so we need to be aware of our ability to turn and let the ball go,’’ she said.

``They’ve got shooting power with an improving percentage and a dynamic, varied midcourt with each combination adding something different.

``Having the ability to adjust, re-set and read what’s happening will be critical for us. We really need the win, we want to win and we want to perform well.’’


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