Infotainment Factory: Silver Ferns reveal how they rallied around Folau

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Sunday, 21 July 2019

Silver Ferns reveal how they rallied around Folau


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New Zealand coach Noeline Taurua has hailed the mental strength of Maria Folau after she played a starring role in her side's Netball World Cup final win over Australia.

Folau put the drama surrounding her husband Israel's legal row with Rugby Australia, following his sacking for his religiously motivated anti-gay comments on his social media platforms, behind her to help the Silver Ferns to a nail-biting 52-51 victory in Liverpool.

Folau refused to speak to the media after her side's win at the M&S Bank Arena as has the former Wallaby, who has been present in the crowd all week.

Maria Folau celebrates winning the Netball World Cup

Taurua said her players had made a pact at the start of the tournament to stand by Folau after her husband admitted recently the bitter dispute with his former employers had taken its toll on his wife.

"We are so happy she is part of our team and one of the things we are about is looking after one another on and off the court," Taurua said.

"I think like anybody when things start happening personally there is going to be a lot of emotion.

"We discussed it as a team and said we would support her knowing how much value she has to us as a Silver Fern.

"She is one in a million, no-one plays netball like her or can shoot like her and we have bonded around each other and trained hard.

"She has been a real trooper."

https://www.instagram.com/p/B0MFtOHlzza/

The 32-year-old veteran goal shooter converted 28 of her 35 shots and held her nerve in a dramatic final quarter, converting two clutch opportunities as Australia staged a dramatic fightback having hauled in a seven-point deficit.

"She's a big game breaker and a big-game player as we all know," said Taurua.

"She has been consistent in her ability to perform no matter what.

"Today is probably one of those days again where she has shone out there, which is expected I suppose because that's what we're used to from her."

https://twitter.com/NetballWorldCup/status/1153024344022343680

Australian netball legend Liz Ellis said that it was New Zealand's 'clutch' ability and experience that got them over the line in the Netball World Cup final.

"The Diamonds fought incredibly hard," Ellis said on Today on Monday morning.

"They went into this match as slight underdogs, they didn't have the experience and the leadership that the Silver Ferns had.

"In the end it was just the experience of the Silver Ferns. Their ability to stand up in those clutch moments."

https://twitter.com/NetballWorldCup/status/1153008124359561216

Ellis said that the current Diamonds team may feel like they fell short of expectations in the final due to the incredible run Australian netball has been on, but said it is worth remembering that this was one of the closest-contested Netball World Cups ever.

"We have such high expectations of the Diamonds because over the years the success has really followed that team. Now we're in a bit of a new era," Ellis said.

"There were five teams coming into this World Cup that could have won it. Jamaica dropped out of the finals race they were beaten by both England and South Africa.

"The closest semi-finals in history both New Zealand and South Africa, getting up by just two goals.

"Australia in terms of Test caps were well behind South Africa and New Zealand."

NZ wins thrilling Cup final

Ellis said the crying, emotion-charged reaction of some Diamonds players was telling, but congratulated the Silver Ferns for turning around their fortunes following their Commonwealth Games heartache.

"You can see what it means for the Diamonds to have fallen at the final hurdle," she said.

"Caitlin Bassett was superb for the Diamonds as captain. Gretel Tippett came onto the court at half time.

"It was a terrific performance but you have to hand it to the Silver Ferns. They were rattled this time last year at the Commonwealth Games when they finished out of the medals, 18 months later, here they are world champions."

New Zealand coach Noeline Taurua has hailed the mental strength of Maria Folau after she played a starring role in her side's Netball World Cup final win over Australia.

Folau put the drama surrounding her husband Israel's legal row with Rugby Australia, following his sacking for his religiously motivated anti-gay comments on his social media platforms, behind her to help the Silver Ferns to a nail-biting 52-51 victory in Liverpool.

Folau refused to speak to the media after her side's win at the M&S Bank Arena as has the former Wallaby, who has been present in the crowd all week.

Maria Folau celebrates winning the Netball World Cup

Taurua said her players had made a pact at the start of the tournament to stand by Folau after her husband admitted recently the bitter dispute with his former employers had taken its toll on his wife.

"We are so happy she is part of our team and one of the things we are about is looking after one another on and off the court," Taurua said.

"I think like anybody when things start happening personally there is going to be a lot of emotion.

"We discussed it as a team and said we would support her knowing how much value she has to us as a Silver Fern.

"She is one in a million, no-one plays netball like her or can shoot like her and we have bonded around each other and trained hard.

"She has been a real trooper."

https://www.instagram.com/p/B0MFtOHlzza/

The 32-year-old veteran goal shooter converted 28 of her 35 shots and held her nerve in a dramatic final quarter, converting two clutch opportunities as Australia staged a dramatic fightback having hauled in a seven-point deficit.

"She's a big game breaker and a big-game player as we all know," said Taurua.

"She has been consistent in her ability to perform no matter what.

"Today is probably one of those days again where she has shone out there, which is expected I suppose because that's what we're used to from her."

https://twitter.com/NetballWorldCup/status/1153024344022343680

Australian netball legend Liz Ellis said that it was New Zealand's 'clutch' ability and experience that got them over the line in the Netball World Cup final.

"The Diamonds fought incredibly hard," Ellis said on Today on Monday morning.

"They went into this match as slight underdogs, they didn't have the experience and the leadership that the Silver Ferns had.

"In the end it was just the experience of the Silver Ferns. Their ability to stand up in those clutch moments."

https://twitter.com/NetballWorldCup/status/1153008124359561216

Ellis said that the current Diamonds team may feel like they fell short of expectations in the final due to the incredible run Australian netball has been on, but said it is worth remembering that this was one of the closest-contested Netball World Cups ever.

"We have such high expectations of the Diamonds because over the years the success has really followed that team. Now we're in a bit of a new era," Ellis said.

"There were five teams coming into this World Cup that could have won it. Jamaica dropped out of the finals race they were beaten by both England and South Africa.

"The closest semi-finals in history both New Zealand and South Africa, getting up by just two goals.

"Australia in terms of Test caps were well behind South Africa and New Zealand."

NZ wins thrilling Cup final

Ellis said the crying, emotion-charged reaction of some Diamonds players was telling, but congratulated the Silver Ferns for turning around their fortunes following their Commonwealth Games heartache.

"You can see what it means for the Diamonds to have fallen at the final hurdle," she said.

"Caitlin Bassett was superb for the Diamonds as captain. Gretel Tippett came onto the court at half time.

"It was a terrific performance but you have to hand it to the Silver Ferns. They were rattled this time last year at the Commonwealth Games when they finished out of the medals, 18 months later, here they are world champions."

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