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'Roses Down Under' - Haythornthwaite and Housby help the Swifts to extra time victory

The 2021 Suncorp Super Netball (SSN) season began over the weekend, while the ANZ Premiership entered its third round, and there were plenty of Vitality Roses involved across both competitions Down Under.

New South Wales Swifts recorded a thrilling 69-66 win at Queensland Firebirds on Sunday in the first game settled by extra time after it was introduced into SSN for 2021.

Nat Haythornthwaite posted the most feeds in the game with 33 and Helen Housby scored three of her four ‘Super Shot’ attempts, but it was the faultless performance by former Saracens Mavericks goaler Sam Wallace that powered the Swifts to victory despite trailing in the bonus period.

The potent combination of Sophie Dwyer and GIANTS Netball captain Jo Harten in the circle saw the Sydney-based franchise win 66-52 at Adelaide Thunderbirds. on Sunday.

The shooting pair scored 22 goals each and both struck four ‘Super Shots’ in a perfectly balanced performance as GIANTS prevailed despite the disappointing injury to star shooter Kiera Austin.

In the battle of the Vitality Roses goal-keepers on Saturday, Kate Shimmin’s Sunshine Coast Lightning overcame Geva Mentor’s Collingwood Magpies 67-56.

Shimmin marked her 100th national league appearance in the best possible fashion, while Magpies captain Mentor made an impact with a crucial deflection in the second quarter to prevent Lightning from surging away but it wasn’t enough to spark a comeback.

West Coast Fever got revenge on Melbourne Vixens on Saturday with a 65-51 win as Stacey Francis’s side aim to quickly recover the 12 points they were deducted ahead of the 2021 campaign due to salary cap breaches.

Fever won every quarter of the 2020 Grand Final rematch with Francis helping to subdue the Vixens attack at wing-defence.

In the ANZ Premiership, George Fisher’s Southern Steel defeated Central Pulse 56-52 in a tight match on Sunday.

Fisher shot at 100% last weekend in Steel’s loss to Northern Mystics and while she wasn’t as ruthlessly accurate this week, her 48 goals from 52 attempts helped power the Invercargill-based club to a second win in three outings this season.

Netball legend Ama Agbeze was substituted on for the final quarter of Northern Mystics’ tense 53-52 success over Mainland Tactix on Monday.

The Mystics held a two-goal lead heading into the final quarter where Agbeze was introduced to see out a narrow win.

 

Suncorp Super Netball Round 2 fixtures

Saturday 8 May at 06:00am (BST) – GIANTS Netball vs Collingwood Magpies

Saturday 8 May at 13:00pm (BST) – West Coast Fever vs NSW Swifts

Sunday 9 May at 04:00am (BST) – Melbourne Vixens vs Sunshine Coast Lightning

 

ANZ Premiership Round 4 fixtures

Sunday 9 May at 05:15am (BST) – Northern Stars vs Southern Steel

Monday 10 May at 08:15am (BST) – Central Pulse vs Northern Mystics

 

The ANZ Premiership is free to watch live and on demand here   

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