Central Pulse defeat Northern Stars to win ANZ Premiership title

Netball 03/06/2019

The Central Pulse have prevailed in a hard-fought final to claim their first ANZ Premiership title, beating the Northern Stars 52-48 in Porirua.

The Wellington-based side led from wire to wire, despite being pushed close by a valiant effort from the heavy underdog Aucklanders.

The win rounds out a dominant season for the Pulse, who erased the memories of last year's shock final capitulation to the Southern Steel in emphatic fashion.

"We know what the past has been and we've learnt from those experiences," Pulse captain Katrina Rore said post-game. "We just wanted to enjoy the moment.

"We love playing with each other and this is for each an every one of us who workeed hard for the last 28 weeks."

Pulse coach Yvette McCausland-Durie echoed those sentiments.

"I'm super-proud of the group," said McCausland-Durie. "I thought we finished strong and pushed through a lot of the challenges.

"I'm just so proud of them. Proud for our region and proud for our franchise." 

In a contest dominated by defense, goalkeep Sulu Fitzpatrick led the way for the Pulse, snaring four turnovers and five deflections.

At the the other end, retiring Stars captain put on a farewell display to be proud of, but it wasn't enough to slow down Pulse sharpshooter Aliyah Dunn.

Dunn sank a staggering 40 of her 43 attempts on goal in a masterful display, while all three of her shooting counterparts struggled for consistency.

Leading 27-25 at halftime, the Pulse ranmped up the pressure defensively to pull away at the end of the third quarter, riding Dunn's hot hand through the final stanza to spark scenes of celebration at the Te Rauparaha Arena.

Read more at Newshub.