Firebirds gain more ‘mongrel’ with Geitz return
FIREBIRDS vice-captain Caitlyn Nevins says the likely return of netball superstar Laura Geitz for Saturday's match-up with the Melbourne Vixens will help Queensland build on the "mongrel'' they unleashed in last weekend's 'Sunshine Shootout' triumph.
Geitz missed the win over the Sunshine Coast Lightning with a back injury but has been given clearance to fly to Melbourne with the Firebirds to make a final decision on their line-up just before the first pass.
The fourth-placed Firebirds lifted superbly as a unit in her absence to roll the Lightning in Suncorp Super Netball's Queensland derby.
Nevins said the likely inclusion of Geitz would help the side go to another level against the undefeated Vixens at Hisense Arena.
"To get the win last week was just fantastic. It was something that the group really needed … having her (Geitzy) fit and ready to tackle this game is just going to add another element of strength to our line-up,'' Nevins said.
"We want to be fearless, we want to be deadly and we also want to have a lot of mongrel as well out there on court.
"On the weekend, that's exactly what we displayed. As a group we were so happy with our performance but it's another game this weekend.
"The competition is so close, if we are not on our game, the Vixens can absolutely take it out.
"You have to back it up every single week because the Suncorp Super Netball is so tough and hotly contested and with the new points system, it's closer than ever.
"We need to make sure we come out with a really strong performance.
"It's a big month to start the season (playing three of last year's top four) and we wouldn't have it any other way. We knew we couldn't build into the season.''
Nevins was part of the Vixens squad that won the 2014 ANZ Championship grand final against the Firebirds before linking with Queensland and claiming the 2015 and 2016 titles with the purple powerhouse.
The Vixens won the minor premiership last season but went out of the finals in straight sets.
They have exploded from the gates in 2018 with wins over Collingwood and NSW Swifts to be one of three unbeaten teams.
"They are in exceptional form at the moment and have been playing some really good netball,'' Nevins said.