Surrey Storm 41 -53 Severn Stars
Surrey Storm falls at the hands of Severn Stars in their first pre-season friendly 41-53.
Surrey Storm’s pre-season opener against Severn Stars at Surrey Sports Park proved to be a learning curve for the new Director of Netball, Mikki Austin, as Storm got their first taste of defeat.
Deviating from the usual netball format, the friendly was six periods of 10 minutes, and Austin intended to try several different player combinations throughout.
Storm’s starting line-up showed strong intentions with the shooting combination of the South African shooter, Sigi Burger and new addition, Yasmin Hodge-England.
However, Severn Stars came out firing as they took an early lead 1-4 within minutes of taking to the court and it didn’t stop there, with Storm ending the first 10-minute period trailing by 5.
Despite some dominant defensive work from Captain, Katy Holland, in the Stars shooting circle, herself and GK Lorraine Kowalewska couldn’t stop Stars scoring.
The remainder of the first half told a similar tale as Severn Stars took hold of the game, stretching out their lead by 11, ending the first half 18-29.
Austin’s new team left themselves with all the work to do in the second half, walking back onto the court with a stronger sense of intent and urgency.
Storm’s Emily Gulvin injected some much-needed pace and positivity to Storm’s game in the second half, earning the Surrey side several interceptions and turnovers.
Surrey Sports Park also played witness to several confidently guided long shots from the young shooter, Emily Porter who proved to be a safe bet under the post.
Despite a stronger second half performance, it was not to be for Surrey Storm as they ended the game 41-53.
Speaking to Mikki Austin post-match, the new Director of Netball spoke about how vital pre-season friendlies are ahead of the new VNSL season.
“Pre-season is a great opportunity to get some new combinations out there onto court. It gives the fans and coaching team a chance to look at the squad and see where we’re at.”
“Although I am disappointed with the result, it’s not really about that, it’s more of a learning exercise. Today we learned that our ball placement is definitely not where we need it to be, but that is something we can control and work on, so that a good thing!”
Surrey Storm will now move into a new 4-week training block ahead of their next pre-season friendly at Surrey Sports Park against Wasps Netball.