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WNBL Rd4: Conti back, new blow for Caps

TENACIOUS guard and an AFLW star with Richmond Tigers, Monique Conti returns to WNBL action in Round 4 with Southside Flyers while the Canberra Capitals have suffered a further bodyblow with import Dekeiya Cohen deciding on Monday to quit the embattled club.

Rookie coach Kristen Veal must feel as if she walked under a ladder, crossed the path of a black cat and broke a mirror with her Caps first losing Gemma Potter to an ACL tear in their season opener.

Then future Opals star Jade Melbourne was injured and now Cohen is goin'.  

“I would like to thank my teammates, coaches, and the fans for providing an environment that allowed me to play my game and have fun while doing it,” Cohen said.

And life gets no easier for Canberra, away to Adelaide to start the round at a time when the Lightning have turned the corner and are keen to stack numbers in the ladder's W column.





LIGHTNING coach Nat Hurst is a legend of Canberra women's basketball and the current travails of the Capitals would disturb her deeply. But there's no place for sentiment when Adelaide hosts the Capitals tonight and there won't be any as Steph Talbot leads the assault and Izzy Borlase continues her emergence as a star of the now, let alone the future.

NO-ONE could blame the Flames for believing they got the rough end of the pineapple with this season's draw but that knowledge will be cold comfort when they run up against Southside. The Flyers were embarrassed in Townsville and with the addition of Monique Conti, should have very few issues with Sydney. The Flames will have a go but Southside's size and depth will be insurmountable.

FEW would have guessed the first clash between Townsville and Bendigo would mean the end of one of only two remaining undefeated streaks. The battle of the two teams at the top pits the Fire's fabulous Nicholson-Reid backcourt against the Spirit's famous frontcourt of Anneli Maley and Kelsey Griffin. Hometown reffing shouldn't be an issue, but it is.

WHEN they opened the season in Perth, Melbourne scored 104 points and the Lynx 88 in a match where defence was NOT a casualty. There was some simply sizzling shooting going on but when it came down to the wire, the Boomers knew how to consolidate the win. Perth is on a roll now though so expect this to be tight, with an upset possible.

ON the road into Adelaide, Southside can anticipate a hot reception after holding off the Lightning 99-91 in the opening round. That was a gem and with a big crowd expected for the chance to see Lauren Jackson in action, the atmosphere should be electric here too. If Adelaide can successfully nullify the Flyers' bigs, they will be halfway home to a big home success. 

AT home at last, Sydney still will find its hands full dealing with a Bendigo team which clearly has championship aspirations. And any team serious about the pinnacle cannot afford to lose games such as this. That almost makes it a "must win" for the Spirit and eases most of the pressure off the Flames. That's a dangerous recipe.

Nov 30

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