• Kimberlee Green, NSW Swifts (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
A sizzling start to netball's major competition as teams are uncovered, debutants made and performances shine.
By
Sarah Leach

Source:
Zela
4 Apr 2016 - 3:42 PM  UPDATED 4 Apr 2016 - 3:43 PM

The first weekend of ANZ Championship netball set the season alight. A few tight finishes and electric performances from all your favorite players!

Southern Steel (58) def Mystics (57)

Southern Steel began their 2016 with a storming come-from-behind rally to edge the Auckland Mystics 58-57 in Auckland on Friday. 

With time running out and down by as many as six goals at one stage, Steel made a late charge in the last 90 seconds to whittle back the deficit and level the scores with 30 seconds to go.

Queensland Firebirds (70) def Mainland Tactix (55)

Queensland Firebirds turned up the heat with a trademark forceful outing to overcome the Mainland Tactix 70-55 in Brisbane on Friday.

Looking to become the first team to win back-to-back titles, the Firebirds had the luxury of playing their starting seven from last season before going on to secure their 14th consecutive win.

West Coast Fever (63) def Adelaide Thunderbirds (44)

The West Coast Fever opened their 2016 account in style with a comprehensive 63-44 win over the Adelaide Thunderbirds in Perth on Saturday.

An influential Caitlin Bassett hauled an impressive 47 goals from 49 attempts before being replaced midway through the final stanza.

 NSW Swifts (57) def Melbourne Vixens (42)

The NSW Swifts made their explosive start to the season with a clinically efficient 57-42 win over the Melbourne Vixens in Sydney on Sunday.

Three debutants graced the court for the Swifts as they retained the Sargeant-McKinnis Cup in style. NZ Silver Fern Laura Langman impressed alongside MVP Kimberlee Green in the mid-court. Vixens were disappointing in a Madi Robinson return match.

Central Pulse (57) def Magic (56)

A new-look Central Pulse has held on for a thrilling 57-56 victory over the Magic in their opening match of the 2016 ANZ Championship in Wellington.

Captain Katrina Grant admitted after the game “the Pulse of old” would not have been able to pull back the game from the clutches of a more established Magic side, and win. Pulse held their composure for a last gasp win.

A stand-out performer in the match was 18-year-old Maia Wilson who’s stepped up to replace injured veteran Jodi Brown and shot a composed 34 from 38. Ameliaranne Wells (Pulse) was the game’s MVP.

Watch match highlights: