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Fair Decision For All, Says Pulse Coach

Te Wānanga o Raukawa Pulse coach Yvette McCausland-Durie believes the fairest decision has been made following the cancellation of this weekend’s round of ANZ Premiership netball matches due to the changes in COVID-19 alert levels.

McCausland-Durie, who is stepping down at the end of the season, has been denied the opportunity of a hometown farewell but with the focus firmly on the August 23 Grand Final, sentiment does not play a part.

The Pulse were due to play their last two matches of the regular season in their home base of Wellington against the Northern Stars on Sunday and Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic on Monday but that has now been ruled out.

As a result, all games that were due to played this weekend have been deemed draws with the respective teams earning two points for each designated match.

``With Auckland moving to Alert Level 3 and the rest of the country to Level 2, this was the fairest outcome for all,’’ McCausland-Durie said. ``It doesn’t impact the standings on the points table at all and in the interests of fairness and player welfare this is the right decision.’’

With the Alert levels remaining in place until midnight Friday before being reassessed, no teams can train together in group situations until further notice but McCausland-Durie was happy with her team’s response.

``The team has been great at just adapting to any situation thrown at them this year and what’s happening now is no different,’’ she said.

``The silver lining is that it gives us a little more time to get over a few bumps and bruises which I’m sure the other teams will enjoy as well.

``Until we get further guidelines from Netball New Zealand (NNZ), the Ministry of Health and the Government, our focus is on players maintaining their conditioning in their own space, which is not foreign to them after the previous experiences with lockdown, and hoping this is short-lived.

``The team is pretty upbeat and we remain very focused on the end goal and that is winning this year’s title.’’

NNZ will be assessing the Finals Series (August 23), during which all teams are set to be playing for the season’s final placings, in the coming days.

The Pulse cemented their spot as the No 1-ranked team heading into the Finals Series with a couple of weeks to spare while the Tactix were confirmed as their opponents after securing back-to-back wins in the previous round.

In a Northern derby, the Mystics and Stars are locked in for the play-off for third and fourth while the Southern Steel and Magic will contest fifth and sixth places.

© Scoop Media

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