Severn Stars’ Head Coach Sam Bird says her team need to concentrate on performance rather than points to progress this season.
Bird’s side is still awaiting its first win in this year’s Vitality Netball Superleague two games in, with its first away match of the season at her previous side Benecos Mavericks this Saturday (February 24, 4pm), in Hertfordshire.
Stars, a joint franchise between the University of Worcester and University of Gloucestershire, put in a strong performance in their opening encounter against Manchester Thunder, who placed third last year, losing in the dying seconds by just one goal, having led from the outset. Last weekend, Stars matched Midlands rivals and reigning Superleague champions Wasps for two quarters of the match, but left themselves much to do after a first quarter that saw them fall seven goals behind.
Although Bird admitted feeling the pressure to get a win on the board, she said she was happy with what she had seen on the court against Wasps and that this was key.
“Obviously points are in the back of your mind,” she said. “You want points, everybody does, so that’s really important, but if we take care of the performance the points will follow so it’s all about the performance for me.
“Training has gone well this week with the squad working collaboratively, but with high intensity and players challenging each other. We have reflected well on areas to improve and will take those from the training environment into the game at the weekend.”
Bird will be returning to a side she knows well having spent 11 years as a coach at Mavericks, during which time they won two Superleague titles. She said she was expecting a competitive game, with both sides fielding new team members, and a lively atmosphere.
“Mavericks are a new look team this year so they have got a few familiar faces but a new attacking line-up in particular and I’m really looking forward to the game,” she said.
“Mavericks have a good fan base so it will be a good loud noisy match and I think these girls are really going to put out a good performance against Mavericks.”
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