Nicholson’s Flames face Fire in do-or-die fixture

February 22, 2024 | Sydney Flames news

It all comes down to this for the Sydney Flames.

Win on Sunday against the Fire in Townsville and they secure the club’s first post-season berth since 2017-18.

Loss and their season – highlighting how close the WNBL24 season is, with Southside, Townsville, Bendigo, Melbourne and Perth also in the mix for the four semi-final spots.


One who knows all about playing big games in Townsville is Flames star Lauren Nicholson, who won a championship with the Fire last season.

“We need to stick to our game plan and trust the process,” Nicholson said.

“I believe if we execute, especially in the second half, we will come out on top.

“We are playing pretty good basketball right now so if we play that way we will win.

“It would mean a lot for the club to get to the finals after a long time out of them.

“I feel like Guy [Molloy] and the Flames management have put together a roster that can compete for a championship.

“I know that’s what we are all trying to achieve and I truly believe we can get there.”

The Sutherland product will go into the round 15 fixture full of confidence, after being shortlisted for both the competition’s MVP and Fans MVP awards.

“It means a lot to be shortlisted for those awards,” Flame #132 said.

“It’s been a really enjoyable season and I’ve loved playing on this team.

“It’s a reflection of the people I have around me – players and coaches because I wouldn’t be playing good basketball without them.”

These nominations are warranted, with the St Mary’s alum averaging 16.7 points, 3.8 assists and 3.6 rebounds per game this season.

“I definitely feel more confident than I ever have,” the 30-year-old said.

“I think everyone on our team is playing better toward the back end of the season.”

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Adding to that is the support the Hoops Capital side is receiving from its fans, highlighted by breaking the club’s standalone crowd record on Sunday against Southside at Qudos Bank Arena.

“Having more than 6000 people there on Sunday was incredible,” said Nicholson, who was part of the club’s last title in 2017.

“The atmosphere in Qudos Bank Arena was unbelievable to play in and I hope those kinds of numbers to games continue in the future.

“It shows that women’s basketball in Sydney is growing and we are building something special for the future of women’s sport.”

Sunday’s game will tip-off at 4pm AEDT and be streamed via 9Now.