Plenty to learn for Magpies in tight win, says coach

Caitlin Thwaites scored the match-winning goal for the Magpies.
Caitlin Thwaites scored the match-winning goal for the Magpies. Jason McCawley

FOR 59 minutes the Swifts looked to be writing a new chapter in their history as the giant killers of Super Netball.

But in the final seconds of their game against pre-season favourites the Magpies in Sydney on Sunday, luck and experience conspired against them.

The Magpies, time wasting as the clock ran down, managed to net the winning goal with just seconds remaining to take the 55-54 win.

In the final scramble for victory, the Magpies proved the better side.

But it was a close call which continues to enhance the Swifts reputation as one of the most dangerous teams in the competition.

"That was close. I really thought we might have pinched that," said coach Rob Wright.

"But I was really pleased with how well they bounced back from last week.

"There will be plenty to learn out of that one."

While the Swifts produced their best netball of the season so far, the Magpies were far from convincing as a side boasting the core of the Diamonds line-up and with an overload of experience compared to their young rivals.

But in the end, when composure and experience counted most, they were masterful.

It was the fourth loss of the season for the Swifts who also boast a win and a draw in their first six matches of the new competition.

It was a crucial win for the Magpies, who despite their wealth of internationals, still remain outside the top four on the competition ladder in fifth place with a mixed bag of three wins and three losses.

"They are a good team. We didn't take them lightly," said Magpies defender Sharni Layton on her old team.

A poor start saw the Swifts trail the Magpies by six midway through the first quarter and then 14-11 at the break.

But the hosts came out hard and with intent in the second, drawing level with their rivals at the 20 minute mark and going into the break locked at 27-27.

The third quarter was an arm-wrestle with the Magpies taking a 44-42 jump into the break.

In a thrilling final period, where the score was repeatedly locked, the Magpies came through.

The top-of-the-table Giants will return to Sydney next weekend for the first time in five rounds to play the Swifts for the second time this season.

The two NSW sides met in the season opener, won by the Giants 58-53 - the first of five straight victories.

The Giants winning streak only ended on Saturday night when the side fell to the Vixens 59-51 in Melbourne in their round six encounter.

Topics:  collingwood magpies netball netball nsw swifts super netball

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