One of the freshest rivalries in Suncorp Super Netball will add another chapter when Sunshine Coast Lightning travel down the highway for Saturday’s “Battle of the Bruce”.

Sunshine Coast’s addition to the National League in 2017 meant the three-time champion Firebirds had a local rivalry and there has been little between the two Queensland clubs.

The have met on 12 occasions, with Lightning leading the head-to-head duel with seven wins. It’s a sequence that peaked with a Sunshine Coast victory in the 2018 elimination final.

There has been one draw, and the Firebirds have been victorious four times, including the last three battles.

“Our mates down the Bruce are always a good challenge,” Lightning goal shooter Cara Koenen said.

“They gave us a touch-up last time, but we were missing Steph Wood. Having her back will be awesome and I’m expecting a really tight match.”

Adding to the rivalry is the appearance of several former Firebirds in the Lightning camp.

Tara and Maddie Hinchliffe, Kate Walsh, Mahalia Cassidy, Laura Scherian and Reilley Batcheldor previously were either regular players or training partners at the Firebirds.

“A lot of us grew up together and now we’re enemies,” Tara said. “Playing against our old teammates will be fun.”

Tune into Fox Sports / Kayo Sports Saturday 21 May at 5pm for all the action live.

Tickets are on sale now for the Lightning v Magpies First Nations match at USC Stadium on Sunday 5 June 2022, from 4pm

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