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Maria Folou is a big step forward for the Silver Fencing champions before the World Cup



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This story was originally published on the locker room at Newsroom.co.nz and published with permission.

From their point of view on the Southland farm, an Olympic basketball player may take on some honor, with a noticeable increase in the Silver Ferns on the eve of the tournament world championship.

On a farm of deer in the deep south, Donna Wilkins does not feel anything except pride for her Silver Fat Archer.

Wilkins, a 56-Test Silver Fern and two-time Olympic basketball for Tall Fern, was summoned by coach Noelin Taurua to help the country's best shooters in their build up for the Liverpool World Championship. .

Employed by the mother of three young children who live on a scattered family farm near Mount, Wilkins traveled around the country to work with the shooters individually, helping them with their equipment.

Over the past week it became apparent that Wilkins's advice – in addition to the influence of Taurua and the hard work of the players themselves – pays off.

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Shooting is an area where Taurua can say that she is really happy after four games last week against Fiji pearls, all the stars (the team of silver ferns B) and men from NZ who ended Saturday with a 66-54 loss in an extremely historic final with men

All four of the ferns in this series in Oakland ended with an accuracy above 80 percent, which was exactly what Taurua demanded.

And if you had to allocate one of them, it would have been unshakeable firing at the gate of Maria Folou. Although she was worried about coming to the series – a very public outbreak around her husband, Israel, last week – she had no visible effect on Fool's trial in court, an average of 90% in all four games.

On the way to Sunday's trial on training for cooks from the southern cuisine, Wilkins believed that the fist quill was in excellent shape – crossing his fingers that he would continue in Liverpool.

"Playing against men's teams, you can scold your shot a bit," she says. "But they all went to office. No matter which combination was included, or if you changed your filming partner, there was no difference in the level of the game.

"Although the boys were not allowed to block their shots, they still leaned and jumped and tried to smash the shooters. To play two games against the men's teams and still have high interest rates, I was burned."

Bailey Mees made a big profit until the accident in a match with NZ Men did not leave her with a concussion of the brain.

Picture of FIONA GOODALL / GETTY

Bailey Mees made a big profit until the accident in a match with NZ Men did not leave her with a concussion of the brain.

Despite the glitter that Wilkins has shown in his card in the netball – its competitive edge, the jump for rebounds and the accuracy of firing from any range – it is often memorized by only one missed march, from 20 seconds to the finals of the 1999 World Cup. in Christchurch The score was linked to Australia, which then won the winning goal.

But her experience in these pressure situations, and her netball expertise, made Taurua turn to Wilkins to help the current shooter harvest. Two other former ferns – Polygon Margaret Foster and defender (and former fencier coach) Yvonne Willinger – have also been introduced to help in their area of ​​the court. During the ANZ Premiership, three coaches spent 45 minutes individual sessions with Ferns team members.

"The arrows were really receptive, and this gave them the opportunity to ask me questions and focus exclusively at the end of the trial," says Wilkins.

"Even if we could help with one or two things, they could be one or two things that help us move the line to a gold medal."

Of all the areas at the Silver Fence trial, this is the end of the shooting that Taurua feels has finally nailed it. She, she said, still needs work, but she is encouraged by her options in a difficult spot for a wing attack – Gini Crampton and Shannon Saunders, who happened in the final.

Defensively, Ferns still have to concentrate on work as a unit and "link between the top and the back". But the arrows require little attention.

"I'm still very pleased with the shooting range and the shooters we have," says Taurua.

Te Paea Selby-Rickit may have been shot with the Ferns for the Northern Quad Series in Liverpool in January, but Taurua was shocked at how her reserve goal was to crack the crack in the third quarter of the Saturday finals.

Bailey Mees, another shooter, brought from the desert of the New Zealand Netball, returned the faith of Taurua to her. In the first two games against All Stars and NZ Men, he scored 91 percent of his shots and did not give up some reliable defenses.

But the shoulder-to-shoulder collision in the male game forced Mesa to sit on the last two games with a concussion of the brain. However, it will not allow her to take the plane to Liverpool on Wednesday.

"It was a bit of a shame not having Bailey there to see what kind of mix," said Taurua after the finale. "But it's quite breathtaking Bailey returns in as another option to shoot at the gate."

This latest series helped Tauroyah consolidate their firing combos for the World Cup.

Folau is her first choice to shoot at the goal. She finished the Cadbury series with 113 goals from 126 attempts – the precision that a player of his caliber and experience has to shoot internationally.

Despite the fact that she spent most of her car in the attack on the goal, shooting with a high percentage of Folou makes her shoot at the gate, which undoubtedly will be her international swan.

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Casey Copoua's silver fern joked that she handed many centimeters of small arms to young Levy.

"She continues to study her craft in that position," says Taurua. "We are still working on a temporary election, and it will come because it gets more time to court. [But] the general theme is that it shoots, so the more we can get it, the more likely it is going to put it through the hoop.

Taurua has always believed in the ability of Fool to shoot, and her agility to rise to the event of big games – as she did on Saturday, scoring 40 of 43 against very high and assertive NZ Men protection. She did not miss the shot until the third quarter.

"I thought she was amazingly dominant, she had a lot of struggles, and she never retreated," says Taurua.

Ezenasio is the obvious Falou starter in the attack of the men. She also had good performance throughout the series, landed 86 percent of her high-quality personnel, and received the MVP award in the first encounter with men.

The duet strengthened their combination in the mind of Taurua during the northern Quad series of January and only strengthened it last week.

Ekenasio, now with 25 cap tests, says the latest series marked "big step up" for all four shooters.

"We have done so much work over such a long period of time, it was not only since the start of this campaign, it was a lot of campaigns in a row. Things simply do not get fixed overnight," she says.

"But I feel that everything we've been working on finally comes to court in the games, so we're really happy, but we still want to be better with it."

Eñencio paid tribute to the work done by Wilkins with the players, and the influence of Taurua, also a once-striker of the Silver Ferns, after she took on the role of coach 10 months ago.

"It's really all the bits. It's not just one person. I think that the most important thing for us is that we worked more than one unit, and not individually, and it really goes through the whole court," she says.

Foula, who fired hard for Adelaide Thunderberds in the Australian supergroup, could not go to the Ferns training camp at Sunshine Coast, just before this series. But she did not take much time to rebuild the partnership with Ezenasio.

"Maria is an absolute player in the world class, so we expect her to be able to take the place. She has taken so much workload this week," says Egnassio. "We worked in any combination that was there, which simply shows that we all want to work together regardless of what."

If there is one thing that Ezenas wants to personally work on these last days before the World Cup, then she is more dominant before she enters the shooting range.

The coach of the silver ferns, Noline Taurua, is pleased with the progress of her team on the eve of the world championship on netball of the following month.

Picture of FIONA GOODALL / GETTY

The coach of the silver ferns, Noline Taurua, is pleased with the progress of her team on the eve of the world championship on netball of the following month.

"Creating a little more game would be nice, and it probably will take a load on the midde," she says.

The Silver Ferns camp may be eternally grateful for the unceasing challenge NZ Men put them last week – the first time that both sides met before the crowd (full house, too, for both matches).

Matt Wind, the captain of NZ Men, who played most of the series of goals, though unbelievably, played in the center and attacked the gate, called the Silver Ferns "flawless" and "amazing".

"I can not emphasize how strong they were on the whole series. Their confidence to move to positions and just pop and went away was great," he said. "They should just continue to rotate, continue to shoot, because they have an incredibly high amount of shots that go through a hoop."

"We were very impressed with the level of the" Fern "game delivered during the week. We have always had great respect for the females, but to see how much they achieved in such a short period of time under Noels was incredible.

– She made a huge difference. And we know that they will be good.

This story was originally published on the locker room at Newsroom.co.nz and published with permission.

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