NSW Swifts coach Rob Wright says avenging last year’s Grand Final heartbreak was not a motivator for the team heading into this season.
According to Wright, the focus was to improve to give themselves the best chance to play in the Grand Final again this season.
“We never saw any motivation around that (Grand Final loss), it was really about us. At the end of the day I decided that we didn’t win and we just needed to get better,” Wright said.
“We knew as a team what we did last year wasn’t going to cut it, so we had to try and continue to improve.
“Our focus clearly was to put ourselves in a position to be in the last game of the year, which is one tick. But we’re there to try and lift the trophy.”
Wright says it still hasn’t sunk in yet that his Swifts, a team he has been the head coach of for three seasons and involved as an assistant for four season before that, will be playing for the trophy again on Sunday in Brisbane.
“Every year this competition has just continued to grow, it gets harder and harder every year. It has been a pretty tough road from the start to get to where we are, so that’s pleasing,” Wright said.
“It hasn’t quite sunk in yet that we’re in there and I think when we get 10,000 screaming fans on Sunday, it might have sunk in by then.”
Wright says the depth in his squad and the ability to call on any one of his twelve athletes is a strength of the Swifts that can leave his opponents guessing.
“We know we can change up combinations depending on if things are working or not working and that’s something that I’ve really wanted to do,” Wright said.
“It rewards people who are doing the job and I like giving people opportunities, so that’s always been a plus.
“Now I can also keep people guessing a little bit around ‘what line-up are they going to go with’ and you never know what we could bring out this week.”
The Firebirds will host the Swifts in the 2016 ANZ Championship Grand Final at Brisbane Entertainment Centre on Sunday July 31. The game will be broadcast live on Channel 10 (ONE in WA), Fox Sports Australia, Sky Sport NZ and the Netball Live App.