Sunshine Coast Lightning are looking to squash concerns of consistency and sharpen their second half game as they head into Round 5 of Suncorp Super Netball this weekend.

Playing their third home game of the season, Lightning will take on the NSW Swifts who currently sit sixth on the ladder with one win, one draw and two losses to their name.

Lightning Head Coach Belinda Reynolds said she expects the match to be tough, but has been impressed with her side’s form.

“We know it’s going to be a tough game against the Swifts but we’re walking towards it. We’ve done a thorough review of the Vixens match and there’s lots of encouraging signs about that game — It’s really about sharpening the second half,” she said.

Reynolds identified that Australian Diamonds’ Steph Wood and Cara Koenen had been working incredibly hard in the attack end, and spoke of injecting some versatility into how they are fed the ball.

“Steph and Cara have had some really solid matches for us and so we’re looking to take the load off them in the second half and have some versatility in the way we feed the ball to those two.

“We love playing at home here at UniSC so I think the home crowd advantage will certainly play a part in this match.”

Lightning rookie Charlie Bell has been soaking up the experience of goalers Steph and Cara, and making the most of her opportunities on court.

“I’m loving working under Cara and Steph — they’re really helping me improve my game. It’s also been amazing going up against defenders like Karla [Pretorius] and KD [Kadie-Ann Dehaney] who really help me strengthen my game, it’s been awesome,” she said.

Sitting behind two Australian Diamond shooters, Bell has had limited court time so far this season, but relishes any opportunity she gets to take the court.

“It’s a bit nerve-wracking but as soon as you get out there you know that you’ve got the trust from the team and they are confident in my ability, so it really helps me go on with confidence and play well.

“It’s obviously a bit depleting to come off two losses, but we know in ourselves that our game plan is good enough to beat any team and I just think going in with that confidence and trust in each other that we can beat any opponent we come up against.”

Sunshine Coast Lightning will take on the NSW Swifts this Sunday at 4pm at UniSC Arena. Tickets are available to purchase via www.sunshinecoastlightning.com.au/tickets

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