Sport

Trying to drop pressure

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July 20, 2017

The Shepparton East and Waaia netball game on Saturday could be a potential grand final match-up.

An encounter against Shepparton East could be a potential grand final match-up for Waaia, but coach Nikki Foster is taking it all in her stride.

The Bombers are unbeaten this year, as Foster said a loss this close to September could positively or negatively change her group.

‘‘I don’t really want to head into the finals undefeated, but I also don’t want to get beaten so close to finals,’’ she said.

‘‘Right across the season we’ve played in close games and proved we can play until the end and we’ve come away with games other teams might have deserved to win, but we’ve built a good team rapport.’’

Four of Waaia’s wins have come by less than five goals, with the team often surging in the last quarter to come from behind.

But Foster said the self-motivated group was a breeze to coach, with a fit 10 players to take into Saturday’s home match against the Eagles.

Last week against an understrength Katandra, Foster kept fresh legs across the match in using her full squad.

Their pace will again be crucial with both sides boasting an experienced midcourt.

‘‘I know they’re quick through the midcourt, any coach studying another team knows they’re accurate goalers... we’ve just got to go in and not take anything for granted,’’ Foster said.

With a team that has clicked since round one, Foster said small improvements needed to be made before the post-season.

‘‘There’s nothing in our game that we will change, obviously finals is generally a bit hotter, so we’re working a lot on our fitness and passing, just lots of drills,’’ she said.

A tough final five weeks of matches starts for Rennie with the Grasshoppers to face second-placed Katunga.

But the Swans will be looking to improve on last week’s performance where they were only nine goal winners against Katamatite.

The Tigers have one of their final chances for victory when they host Tungamah with Katandra and Dookie United playing off in the final match of the round.

●In the PDNL north-west division, Blighty has another chance to defeat Tocumwal before finals, Berrigan takes on the Deni Rovers and Strathmerton hosts Mathoura.

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