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Match preview: Vixens v Swifts

Team huddle firebirds 2015
9 years ago

The much anticipated heavyweight meeting between the Australian Conference's two powerhouse teams has the script set as one of the biggest match-ups of the ANZ Championship season.

Touted as potential champions pre-tournament, this Sunday's result at Allphones Arena is crucial to both teams as the seasons end draws nearer.

The Swifts have had one of the remarkable seasons to date, complimenting just three wins with three draws against the Queensland Firebirds, West Coast Fever (in consecutive weeks) and the Haier Pulse last week.

In spite of the results, the Swifts can't be discounted in front of their home crowd at Allphones Arena, especially boasting a roster of high quality players all over the court.

The Swifts goaling pair of Caitlin Thwaites and Susan Pettitt form a challenging match-up for Vixens strong defensive duo Geva Mentor and Bianca Chatfield.

Swifts captain Kimberlee Green and Paige Hadley possess composed maturity in the mid court and will expose Kelsey Browne to her first experience of playing against the 'Australian-style' at the ANZ Championship level.

It is down the Vixens' frontend that presents the most mouth-watering of contests, with competitive types in Vixen Karyn Bailey (6th in competition for scoring) and Swift Sharni Layton (1st in competition for intercepts, 2nd for deflections) going toe-to-toe for 60 minutes.

Add in Australian circle defender Julie Corletto likely to match-up on fellow Australian representative Tegan Philip, and a highly physical and intense match presents itself.

Both sides will play for the annual Sargeant-McKinnis Trophy, named after both franchise's key figures in Anne Sargeant and current Vixens coach Simone McKinnis.

The Sargeant-McKinnis trophy is awarded to the side with a higher goal aggregate over the two matches played between the Swifts and the Vixens within the home-and-away season of the ANZ Championship.

The Vixens currently hold the Sargeant-McKinnis Trophy, winning it for the just first time last year since 2008.

LAST MEETING: Round 10, 2014: Swifts 54 def Vixens 50, Melbourne

  • The NSW Swifts and Melbourne Vixens play each season for the Sargeant-McKinnis Trophy, named after two greats of Victorian and New South Wales netball in Anne Sargeant and Simone McKinnis, the current Vixens coach. It's decided on aggregate over the two matches during a season. The Vixens currently hold the Trophy, having won it back off the Swifts in 2014 - only the second time since 2008 they have won it.
  • The away side triumphed in the two fixtures last season. The Vixens win 56-50 in Round 7 in Sydney while the Swifts claimed a 54-40 victory in Melbourne in Round 10. That same trend happened in 2013.
  • The Vixens have won three of the past four contests played between the two sides in Sydney by an average of six goals. Overall, the Vixens have won four of the six games in Sydney by an average of 7.3 goals.
  • Four of the Swifts eight victories over the Vixens on their home court have been by 10 goals or more.
  • Current Swifts shooter Caitlin Thwaites holds the record for the most goals scored in a match by a Vixens player against the Swifts with 47 (90 per cent accuracy) in Round 9, 2009.
  • The Vixens have conceded 50 goals or more in a game in four consecutive matches for the first time in their history.
  • The Vixens were the only team last round to trail at half-time but go onto win the match. They trailed the Mainland Tactix 26-25 at the main break but won the game 56-52.
  • The Swifts won three of the four quarters against the Mojo Pulse last round but finished with their third draw of the season.
  • Vixens pair Karyn Bailey and Tegan Philip have combined to shot 41.6 per cent of their overall goals this season from long range compared to 38.2 combined by Thwaites and her Swifts teammate Susan Pettitt.
  • Vixens pair Bianca Chatfield and Geva Mentor are both ranked inside the top 10 in the competition for defensive rebounds with 16 and 10 respectively. Bailey is ranked No.7 for offensive rebounds with 18.
  • Swifts goal shooter Erin Hoare was a member of the Vixens' 2014 premiership squad before moving north. Carla Dziwoki spent four seasons at the Swifts before joining the Vixens in 2015.
  • Against the Vixens in Round 12, 2013 Dziwoki shot a game-high 25 goals to lead the Swifts to an upset victory and retain the Sargeant-McKinnis Trophy.
  • The NSW Swifts broke the league's record for largest regular season crowd last year at Allphones Arena with 10,118 in attendance for the Swifts' Round 12 game against the Adelaide Thunderbirds.

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