Queensland secure place in ANZ Championship final

Last Updated: 16/06/14 3:24pm

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Kimberley Ravaillion of the Firebirds and Courtney Tairi of the Magic compete for the ball during the ANZ Championship Prelim Final

Kimberley Ravaillion of the Firebirds and Courtney Tairi of the Magic compete for the ball during the ANZ Championship Prelim Final

Sky Bet

The ANZ Championship final will be an all-Australian affair for the fourth time after Queensland beat Waikato Bay of Plenty.

The Firebirds defeated Magic 54-50 in Brisbane in the preliminary final to set up a showdown with Melbourne Vixens, who will have home advantage when the teams meet on June 22.

The grand final will be the fourth all-Australian decider in the league’s history and the Firebirds’ third Championship final appearance after winning in 2011 and a narrow defeat last year.

The victory that takes them there was a hard-fought one, with Romelda Aiken the standout performer with 36 goals.

A capacity crowd of almost 3200 anxiously watched as Queensland took a three-goal lead into the final term.

Firebirds goal attack Amorette Wild admitted suffering from butterflies in last week’s major semi-final loss in Melbourne but she was strong and deliberate when it mattered against the Magic.

Her perfect five-from-five goals at the start of the deciding quarter eased the pressure on her partner Aiken and gave the Firebirds match-sealing momentum.

The ANZ Championship, also known as the Trans-Tasman Netball League, was launched in 2008 and features five teams each from Australia and New Zealand.

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