2018 Suncorp Super Netball fixture confirmed
Sunshine Coast Lightning will begin its tilt for back to back Suncorp Super Netball (SSN) premierships with a mouth-watering Grand Final rematch in Sydney to open its 2018 campaign.
Sunshine Coast’s season fixture is packed full of blockbuster matchups with a massive challenge against last season’s runner-up, GIANTS Netball to kick off proceedings on Sunday 29 April.
Lightning will host its first home game in Round 3 against Fever, travelling to Qudos Bank Arena in week one before local bragging rights go on the line against Firebirds in Round 2 at Brisbane Entertainment Centre (BEC).
Lightning Members and fans will only have to travel to the venue of the Club’s 2017 Grand Final success once during the regular season, with all seven Sunshine Coast home games to be played at USC Stadium in 2018 compared to five fixtures in 2017.
The Coast Club will not play Friday night netball in 2018, with five Saturday clashes and nine Sunday showdowns on offer.
There is a major change to match times, with Sunshine Coast to contest most of its games (6) at a more family-friendly time slot of 3:00pm.
“We believe the draw provides some real opportunities for Lightning next year,” Lightning CEO Danielle Smith said.
“Being able to showcase netball and Lightning to a national audience on the Nine Network’s main channel as well as on Telstra TV is a tremendous opportunity and it is great exposure for the Club and the region.
“We’re pleased that all of our home matches will be played right here on the Sunshine Coast where the squad lives and trains. BEC is a good venue but it is not our home – USC Stadium is our fortress and where our high-performance set-up is based.
“There are no easy matches in Suncorp Super Netball but we are happy with what is on offer. Netball Australia has produced a balanced fixture with plenty of variety for our supporters.”
Lightning Coach Noeline Taurua is also excited by the fixture. “We have a tremendous opportunity to begin our season when we travel interstate to face our 2017 grand final opponent,” Taurua said.
“We need to prepare well in the pre-season and be ready to hit the ground running when we take on the Giants. The calibre of players in Julie’s (Fitzgerald) squad cannot be underestimated and they will be ready and raring to go in Round 1.
“Every week will provide a unique challenge and the quality of opposition will mean we will need to adapt and evolve as the competition progresses.
“The target is now on our back and we need to be hungry for success. Only time will tell if we can get the balance right and live up to our standards of 2017.”
Lightning will release 2018 Membership and ticketing information next month.
2018 SSN draw
2018 SSN home games
2018 SSN all games
|1||Giants||Qudos Bank Arena||Sun||29-Apr||1:00pm|
|2||Firebirds||Brisbane Entertainment Centre||Sun||6-May||1:00pm|
|4||Magpies||Margaret Court Arena||Sun||20-May||1:00pm|
|7||Swifts||Qudos Bank Arena||Sun||17-Jun||3:00pm|
Games with added meaning
- Grand Final rematch v Giants (Rounds 1 & 8)
- Local QLD derby (Rounds 2 & 9)
- Facing 2017 Minor Premier, Vixens (Rounds 6 & 14)
Fixture by opponent
Home: Fever, Thunderbirds, Vixens, Giants, Firebirds, Magpies, Swifts
Away: Giants, Firebirds, Magpies, Swifts, Fever, Thunderbirds, Vixens
Fixture by timeslot
- 7:00pm (1)
- 5:00pm (1)
- 3:00pm (6)
- 1:00pm (5)
- 12:30pm (1)
Fixtures by day
- Saturday: 5
- Sunday: 9
Fixture by Venue
- USC Stadium: 7
- Qudos Bank Arena Sydney: 2
- Brisbane Entertainment Centre: 1
- Margaret Court Arena Melbourne: 1
- Hisense Arena Melbourne: 1
- Priceline Stadium Adelaide: 1
- HBF Stadium Perth: 1