Australian Diamonds warned of repeat panic and throwing ‘toys out of bed’ ahead of must-win semi-final against England at Birmingham Commonwealth Games
- Australia will meet England in the Commonwealth Games netball semi-final on Saturday
- Hosts are undefeated, will have the crowd by their side in Birmingham from the start
- Former Diamonds coach Lisa Alexander said it is vital to keep calm collectively
Former Australian netball coach Lisa Alexander has emphasized the importance of not panicking and ‘throwing their toys out of bed’ ahead of the highly anticipated semi-final against England at the Commonwealth Games.
The Diamonds will take to the field from 11:30 PM (AEST) on Saturday to take on the undefeated hosts with a lot at stake.
If they win, they will advance to a gold medal match against New Zealand or Jamaica, if they lose they will play for a bronze medal.
The loss of two goals to Jamaica in the group stage this week shocked many in netball rings, and the Aussie coach from 2011 to 2020 said collective faith is key.
“Australia just needs to settle down. This is not the time to throw the toys out of the cot. Teams have won tournaments despite losing,” she said News Corp.
Former Australian netball coach Lisa Alexander has emphasized the importance of not panicking ahead of the highly anticipated semi-final against England at the Commonwealth Games
If they win, the Diamonds will advance to a gold medal match against New Zealand or Jamaica, if they lose they will play for a bronze medal (photo, fullback Ash Brazill)
“The Diamonds need to get ready for the game of their lives. It’s not the time for negativity.’
As for key positional areas, Alexander suggested that coach Stacey Marinkovich Ash Brazill start in the wing defense, Courtney Bruce at the goalkeeper and Gretel Bueta better used as the team’s goalkeeper.
She also felt that Paige Hadley was worth playing – even for a quarter – because the central center has a calf injury.
Opponents England are strong all over the field, with shooter Ellie Cardwell the greatest danger due to her accuracy.
Bueta is also ready to respond for the Diamonds after an unusually bad show against Jamaica.
Alexander believes she has “really grown as an athlete and as a person” and that the mother of one “loves the competition.”
The Diamonds squandered a six-goal lead against the Jamaica and will try to react against England (photo, goalscorer Gretel Bueta)
The defeat was the Diamonds’ first loss to Jamaica in Commonwealth Games history
Australian center Kate Moloney took some positives from the Jamaica result.
“We can go away and look at some things we need to work on,” she said after the 57-55 loss.
“I think we disappointed ourselves in that last quarter with some execution.
“We were six goals ahead. We probably should have played those out, but when they have weapons like they have in their defensive side and their attacking side, you never really have it – the (momentum) can change so quickly.”
Australia’s quest for gold versus England will be held live on Channel 7 at the National Exhibition Center (NEC) on Saturday from 11:30pm (AEST).