Patience key as Tactix sink Steel

Tactix goal attack Te Paea Selby-Rickit. Photo: Getty
Tactix goal attack Te Paea Selby-Rickit. Photo: Getty
The Mainland Tactix have overcome the challenges their region has been dealt post-Covid to produce a 43-36 win over the Southern Steel.

With both teams taking charter flights the day before the match to the sole ANZ Premiership venue in Auckland, neither team had the home advantage, but the Tactix produced a better performance to claim an upset victory after a tough period which saw Mainland Netball forced into liquidation.

Tactix goal attack Te Paea Selby-Rickit had to step up in her first season with the team, as the usually accurate Ellie Bird was struggling with her shot in the later stages of the game, finishing on 79 per cent (31/39). The Tactix goal attack also showed her experience, offloading to her attackers when the Steel defence were disrupting the shot.

The Tactix midcourt's speed proved essential, with Erikana Pedersen playing the second half of the match after missing the 2019 ANZ Premiership with an ACL injury sustained. The Steel were slow to adapt to this change in the Tactix midcourt, with the Tactix starting the third quarter with three unanswered goals.

The Tactix continued to extend their lead, thanks to calm heads on attack and the always reliable defensive duo of Jane Watson and Temalisi Fakahokotau picking up ball, winning the third quarter 14-7.

Selby-Rickit finished the game at 86 percent accuracy and was awarded the MVP performance.

She believed the team's patience resulted in their success in the third quarter.

"We chipped away for the first half and then we were able to open up - there was more space in the third quarter."

Steel co-captain and Te Paea's sister, Te Huinga Reo Selby-Rickit, rued her side's struggles in the third quarter.

"We got a bit hesitant and stopped driving through the ball."

The Tactix will have the chance to back up their performance against the Northern Stars at 7pm on Monday.

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