Cara Koenen is keen to extend her stay at goal attack if it leads to victory in Saturday’s Suncorp Super Netball Battle of the Bruce between Sunshine Coast Lightning and Queensland Firebirds. 

Koenen is better known as a goal shooter where her partnership with Lightning Captain Steph Wood has been one of the most potent circle combinations in the league. 

It has also been replicated for the Diamonds, with the duo featuring in Australia’s Netball Quad Series success in January. 

Recent challenges, including players out with COVID and short turnarounds due to midweek games, have prompted Lightning to shuffle their strike weapons. 

Wood has been reignited as a wing attack to allow for these challenges and also provide Reilley Batcheldor more time on court, giving Koenen the chance to showcase her second position. 

The rotation throws some tough questions at opponents and Koenen is happy to fill that role again if needed at Nissan Arena on Saturday. 

“I love playing goal attack,” said Koenen whose defence has been a feature over the past fortnight. 

“It’s not my most comfortable position, but I love the space I’m allowed to use, and the defensive effort, I’m allowed to have a crack at some really good ball. 

“I enjoy the challenge 

“I was expensive on turnovers so I’ll be looking to tidy that up.” 

Sunshine Coast Assistant Coach Chris Voge was hopeful defender Kate Walsh would recover from COVID-19 in time for the Battle of the Bruce. 

Whilst Kadie-Ann Dehaney enjoyed a strong performance against the NSW Swifts, an extra defender would be a huge boost. 

Walsh is one of six Lightning players who have worn the Firebirds purple and maroon so there would be no shortage of motivation to take down their old club. 

Voge and Head Coach Kylee Byrne noted the effectiveness of the Adelaide Thunderbirds’ defence on Wednesday against the Firebirds and will have their own plan to keep Gretel Bueta and Donnell Wallam contained. 

“We’ve got to put doubt in the mind of the feeders early on and be really brave from the first whistle,” Voge said. 

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

More Articles