February 24, 2022 | WNBL news

ROUND 12 PREVIEW: One month until finals.

Indigenous Round celebrations tip-off, the WNBL heads to Hobart and a top-four clash is set to close out the round.

WNBL Media previews the round:

Bendigo Spirit v Adelaide Lightning.

Bendigo Stadium. Thursday 7pm local. Kayo Freebies.

This match up will be an interesting game to watch. Bendigo is on a two-game winning streak high, with their round 10 victory coming over Adelaide in an upset, prompting the question, can the Lightning strike back? Both teams have a fully fit squad and both teams have their key players in hot form heading into the last month of the season. An Anneli Maley and Steph Talbot match-up will be a spectacle to watch.

Note: Bendigo could cause an upset yet again, however this win is more valuable to the third-place Lightning who are competing for a home-court finals spot.

Melbourne Boomers v Townsville Fire.

State Basketball Centre. Friday 7:30 pm local. Kayo.

These two are equally 1-1 against each other this season, so this third clash will be close. After two round 11 losses, the chances of finishing within the top four has become rather slim for the Fire however history tells us that they can bounce back from a loss in fine form. In their past two encounters, Lauren Nicholson and Cayla George have each been the top performers for their respective teams, can these experienced WNBL figures bring their best yet again?

Note: The Boomers and Adelaide are sitting on the exact same winning percentage on the ladder, so Round 12 results could really shake things up.

Southside Flyers v Bendigo Spirit.

MyState Bank Arena. Saturday 5pm local. FoxSports/ABC.

The first of a two-string Tasmanian run is set for Saturday afternoon and could be quite the match up. With the Spirit riding a wave of momentum and the Flyers playing a relatively up and down season, this game is tough to call. Exciting news came out of the Flyers camp this week, as Kristy Wallace re-signed with Atlanta Dream in the WNBA, but the Spirit will be focussed on popping their bubble. A Wallace and Maddie Garrick head-to-head will be eye catching. Southside and Bendigo will also launch the first Indigenous round celebrations with Tasmanian fans.

Note: The Spirit went winless last season however could finish round 12 with five wins to their name.

Sydney Uni Flames v Adelaide Lightning.

Brydens Stadium. Saturday 7:30pm local. Kayo.

The Lightning has a chance to secure their place within the top four as they play two of the bottom three teams this round, however Sydney has been able to challenge their opponents recently and it will be about how Adelaide responds. The Steph Talbot/Alanna Smith duo has proved a success so far for Adelaide and the Flames will be counting on Shyla Heal and co-captain Keely Froling to provide some inspiration for the bottom-placed team. The last time they played, the Lightning took the chocolates in a convincing 25-point win.

Note: If Sydney can put together a full four quarters of high-quality game, they could be a smokey for the win. Surely that would put a smile on coach Shane Heal’s face.

UC Capitals v Melbourne Boomers.

National Convention Centre. Sunday 3pm local. Kayo Freebies.

This top four clash will be electric to close out round 12, with the last Caps home game of the season a must watch. The Boomers will be looking to jump a spot if results go their way, while the Caps are holding a 9% lead in winning percentage with a hope to take the top spot. The last time these two were scheduled to meet, their matches were impacted by covid and postponed, so this round 12 encounter will be the first. Keep an eye out for a Britt Sykes and Ezi Magbegor match-up.

Note: The Caps have won their past six matches, can the Boomers hit their peak at the right time and knock Canberra off their high horse?