BY NATHAN DOLE
A WIN outside the top five, Kyneton and Strathfieldsaye face huge matches in Saturday’s sixth round of A-grade netball in the Bendigo Bank Bendigo FNL season.
The Kyneton Tigers are on their court at Kyneton Showgrounds to take on Castlemaine.
It’s sixth up against third.
The Dianne Guest-Oakley coached Kyneton has a 2-3 record following a 28-goal loss on Gisborne’s court in the fifth round played on May 13.
Kyneton’s work in all thirds of the court will be important against a Castlemaine line-up which is playing with plenty of confidence.
Jointly coached by Fiona Fowler, a key player in defence, and Gary Cooke, Castlemaine scored a 55-39 victory against Kangaroo Flat on May 13 at Camp Reserve.
The seventh-placed Strathfieldsaye takes to the court at Kennington’s Harry Trott Oval to meet the fifth-placed South Bendigo.
An 11-goal win at home against Eaglehawk last round meant the Steph Freemantle-coached Strathfieldsaye has a 2-3 record.
To be a serious challenger for a top-five berth, Storm’s team knows it has take the points against a team or two above it, such as South Bendigo.
The Jannelle Hobbs-coached South Bendigo is on the rebound from a 40-goal loss to the unbeaten Sandhurst.
That defeat was South Bendigo’s first at its new home of Harry Trott Oval this season.
The Bloods had won previous matches on the Kennington court against Eaglehawk by 39 goals, and then a hard-fought 48-44 victory against Kyneton in round three.
Last season’s runner-up and a dominant team in recent seasons, Kangaroo Flat has fallen to fifth in the premiership race after a 39-55 result on Castlemaine’s court.
The Jayden Cowling-coached Kangaroos will be determined to bounce back to form when they play Eaglehawk on the Roos’ court at Dower Park.
It’s been a tough run for the Kylie Piercy-coached Eaglehawk who take on the Roos this round and then play Kyneton in the Indigenous Round feature match on June 3 at Canterbury Park.
Golden Square is back on its court at Fur Life Oval in Wade Street to take on Gisborne.
The Benita Swatton-coached Golden Square faces a huge challenge in trying to halt Gisborne’s slick passes from defence, through mid-court and into attack.
The Tarryn Rymer-coached Gisborne has a 4-1 record and is second on the ladder.
Sandhurst takes on Maryborough at Queen Elizabeth Oval.
Beaten just twice in the run to another premiership victory in ’22, Sandhurst is top of the ladder on a five-nil record.
The Tamara Gilchrist-coached Sandhurst was in hot form as it beat South Bendigo by 40 goals last round and should be too strong for Maryborough.
The Jordan Macilwain-coached Maryborough teamed well for a 73-54 victory against Golden Square on the Magpies’ court on May 13 at Princes Park.
Standings in the Bendigo FNL’s A-grade netball competition:
Sandhurst 217 per cent, 20 points; Gisborne 152, 16; Castlemaine 125, 16; South Bendigo 119, 12; Kangaroo Flat 118, 12; Kyneton 104, 8; Strathfieldsaye 94, 8; Maryborough 85, 8; Eaglehawk 62, 0.