The Ascot Park Hotel Southern Steel’s rematch with the Robinhood Stars has been postponed under the ANZ Premiership’s Covid-19 Match Postponement Policy.
The Southerners were due to play the Stars in Auckland on Sunday but the home side has been forced to reschedule both of its round four games to a later date.
The Steel will travel north to play the Mystics on Saturday before returning home earlier than initially planned.
Steel head coach Reinga Bloxham said the situation was inevitable at some stage.
“You always think it’s disappointing to have a game postponed but we all understand the landscape and these things are out of our control,” she said.
“We really feel for the Stars who have had to postpone three games which they are going to have to catch up at some stage. It’s a tough situation for everyone but we all knew coming into this season to expect the unexpected.”
With the Steel initially rostered to play four games in nine days – including games against the Splice Construction Magic in Rotorua and Te Wānaga o Raukawa Pulse in Wellington during round five – Bloxham admits there is a silver lining.
“From our perspective, it’s not really a bad thing as we get to go home and have a couple of extra days to recover – it’s definitely a bonus for us and our bodies. To have three games now feels like a bit of a treat,” she said.
“The word ‘fluid’ has been used a lot but in reality until you go into those moments, you don’t really know how you’re going to respond and cope with it.
“When we had a couple of late injuries recently, based on our last performance against the Mystics you could conclude perhaps we weren’t as prepared as we thought we were so that’s been a good learning for us going forward and we will continue to navigate our way through any challenges which crop up.”
Saturday’s battle with the Mystics looms tantalisingly as a chance for redemption after the defending champions humbled the Steel by 20-goals in round two.
“The win over the Stars at the weekend gave us back more confidence in what we’re trying to achieve. We know we can perform much better against the Mystics than our last effort and yes, there is an element of redemption we’re seeking.”
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