WNBL 2014/15 Grand Final Preview

The big dance has finally arrived. It's the two best teams in the league, arguably all season long, battling it out for the 2015 WNBL championship.

Is this the year for the Townsville Fire to overcome the overbearing powers that the Bendigo Spirit once was.

With Kristi Harrower out of the Spirit line-up and Cayla Francis in to the Fire starting unit, this could quite possibly be the year which sees the changing of the guard.

View image | gettyimages.com


Townsville Fire (1st) vs. (2nd) Bendigo Spirit

Sunday 8th March, 2pm (local) @ Townsville RSL Stadium

SemiFinal1

Tale of the Tape

Townsville Fire

18 wins 5 losses

Last Five: 4 wins 1 loss

Bendigo Spirit

16 wins 8 losses

Last Five: 4 wins 1 loss


The Venue

We've spoken previously about Townsville's dominance at the local RSL. With such a 'homely' feeling in a place like theirs, the Fire have certainly made sure they don't give up wins at home.

Dating back to a fortnight ago, when the two met in the Qualifying Final:

The Fire won ten games this season at home while only dropping the one game to the Dandenong Rangers. The ten games they won, they were victorious by an average of 27.9 points.

Bendigo visited the Townsville RSL just once this season in their Round 1 clash. The Spirit went down by three points 70-67 in the Grand Final rematch.

Obviously the Fire were successful in defending that home court again when they defeated Bendigo 82-63 to secure a home Grand Final.


The Stars

Cayla Francis

Arguably the second best player in the competition this season, most likely succumbing to Abby Bishop of the University of Canberra Capitals for the league's most valuable player award.

Francis has been the main reason the Fire have been able to turn the tables on their modern rivals this season.

If the home side are to take the cake this season, they will be relying on their tall timber to dominate inside. Something Francis knows all too well.

Belinda Snell

Always has a moment for the big time, it's as if she can taste the big occasion. If the Spirit are in need this Saturday, expect Snell to deliver.

With an abundance of experience in these types of contests, Snell is nearly automatically the number one person you would want on your team.


The Match-Up

Rachael McCully vs. Kelly Wilson View image | gettyimages.com After a career performance just six days ago, Townsville head coach Chris Lucas will be keen to shut Spirit point guard Kelly Wilson out of the game early.

On the flip side, the retiring star in McCully will have her heart on her sleeve one final time in pursuit of that maiden title.

With the point position so heavily involved in all happenings on the floor throughout the forty minutes, expect neither to take the foot off the gas as they give their team everything they truly have in them.


The Difference

Fire by 4