Sunshine Coast Lightning will take on GIANTS Netball this weekend for the Club’s first pre-season match of the year.

While there will be a closed match on Friday evening, the Saturday game is a ticketed event — with Lightning Members able to attend for free.

Sunshine Coast Lightning Head Coach Belinda Reynolds said it was a great opportunity to get the players out on court and test out different combinations.

“The athletes love to play, it’s the reason we train so hard. We’re always looking for opportunities for match play because that’s where we gain so many learnings from it for the season ahead,” she said.

“I’m looking forward to testing a number of combinations this weekend. We also haven’t had a chance to execute the game plan I’ve put in place, because while we had the Suncorp Spirit Cup last year with the Firebirds, we hadn’t trained together that much, so it will be good to test the game plan this weekend.”

With four international players recently returning from the Quad Series, these players will require their load to be managed for the upcoming matches.

“All our internationals have been in great form returning from South Africa and they’ve only just come back to training. They all represented their countries extremely well, and I’m looking forward to having them back in the Lightning outfit,” she said.

“To ensure we’re managing the load of the international players, we will be playing everyone this weekend including our Training Partners.”

Karla Pretorius will warm up with the team on Saturday but will not take the court during the game.

While it’s been challenging to not have the international players in the training environment, Reynolds is pleased with how the squad is progressing this preseason.

“While we haven’t had some of those key players among the squad as much, we’ve worked really hard on the game plan with the group here, and those returning will only add that extra experience into the line-up. I can’t wait to test it this weekend.”

The practice match will not be livestreamed, but score updates will be provided via social media.

To purchase or redeem a ticket to the practice match, visit: https://bit.ly/3HpPpKz

Sunshine Coast Lightning Squad

Steph Wood (managed load)

Cara Koenen (managed load)

Laura Scherian

Mahalia Cassidy

Kadie-Ann Dehaney

Tara Hinchliffe (managed load)

Annie Miller

Ash Ervin

Charlie Bell

Ava Black (TP)

Bridey Condren (TP)

Leilani Rohweder (TP)

Martina Reekers (TP)

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