Silver Ferns wary of Browne threat

Cathy Walshe, NZ Newswire September 23, 2012, 9:07 am

Lanky Australian shooter Caitlin Bassett isn't the only danger isolated by the Silver Ferns ahead of Sunday's third and final Constellation Cup netball match in Christchurch.

Midcourter Madison Browne, 22cm shorter than Bassett's 1.92m, presents a different set of challenges for the New Zealanders as they look to wrap up a series whitewash with their third win on end.

New Zealand coach Waimarama Taumaunu says Browne made a huge difference in Thursday's Auckland Test when she was subbed on at halftime after the Silver Ferns led a shell-shocked Australia 31-19 at the break.

The Diamonds' spirited second-half comeback fell one goal short, but the New Zealanders struggled to rein in Browne, a player Taumaunu rates highly.

"She made a difference and we didn't respond as well as we could have," Taumaunu said.

In contrast to centre Kimberlee Greene, who uses short sharp changes in direction, Taumaunu says the skilful Browne uses a wider range of the court and presents different sorts of problems for the New Zealand zone defence.

Kayla Cullen, expected to get a run at wing defence for the first time in the series, is looking forward to matching herself against Browne.

"I'll pretty much have to be all over her, just be a rash on her," Cullen told NZ Newswire.

"I'll have to keep her off the circle edge, keep her from penetrating into the middle."

A full team defensive effort would be crucial, she added, with everyone from the shooters down working to slow the ball through the court.

"Caitlin Bassett's got a great hold and she's so tall that it's quite difficult to mark the path going in. But if we can put pressure on further up the court, it'll give us time to pick up ball."