The ANZ Premiership finals series remains in their sights and Trident Homes Tactix Te Paea Selby-Rickit believes they have rediscovered their mojo to keep their slim chances of reaching the play-offs alive.

The Tactix came from behind to beat the Steel last week to keep in touch with the Premiership leaders and a crunch weekend of netball lies ahead with a double-header and six league points on offer.

And it starts with a crucial match-up against the Mystics in Auckland on Saturday – a team they have not been able to topple so far this season – backed up with a meeting against the Pulse in Wellington on Monday night.

Selby-Rickit believed greater patience with ball on attack had played a major part in their improved performances in recent weeks including three quarters against the Mystics last week and the come-from-behind win over the Steel.

“We’ve been working hard on treasuring that ball when we’re on attack – even if it’s ugly or if we have to play the ball down with 100 passes.  Holding onto that ball is really important,” she said.

“We know the Mystics can score really quickly and I think we just took our foot off the pedal and made a few silly errors which really cost us in that last quarter.  The good thing is we know what we have to do, and we’ve been stepping up every time we get out on court.

“We showed against the Steel that we had that belief in our game plan, we stuck to it and finished really strongly.”

The Tactix are still sitting behind the Steel but four wins in their remaining regular season matches could see the calculators pulled out to determine which three teams move forward into the Elimination Final and Grand Final.

“I don’t think we’ve made it very easy on ourselves, but we’ve still got a chance and it’s going to take a couple of big weekends to give it our best shot.”

Selby-Rickit said the stop-start nature of an ANZ Premiership season hit hard by the impacts of a pandemic had been difficult for all teams to endure, but the business end of the campaign sometimes brought the best out of teams.

She said the Tactix were looking forward to their road trip to Auckland and Wellington to spend time together before rounding out the regular season with another double-header in front of a parochial red-and-black crowd in Christchurch.

“There’s no doubt we love playing at home and the crowd really got in behind us against the Steel, which is a lift, but it’s going to be nice to head away as a team because this is a special group, and we really want to do well for each other.”

Selby-Rickit, who is one of the leading goal attacks in the league for volume of attempts at goal and with centre pass receives, felt there had been plenty of learnings over the first half of the season which had been challenging both on and off court.

“It has been a crazy tough year at times – we don’t like losing and it’s been hard sitting in the lower half of the table but there’s been a lot of learnings for this group,” she said.  “We’ve been able to get a lot of our younger players on court and without Jane (Watson) there have been others who have stepped up into that leadership role which is great for our group.”

  • The Trident Homes Tactix meet the Mystics at Trusts Arena in Auckland on Saturday at 2.10pm and the Pulse at TSB Bank Arena in Wellington on Monday at 7.15pm, both games live on Sky Sport.