Fierce backlash over drastic rule change
SUPER Netball has pulled one of the most head-scratching moves you're ever likely to see.
Less than three months ago the league floated the possibility of a radical rule change by potentially implementing a two-point shot.
Fans were quick to shut down the proposal with the league website posting a collection of the feedback received while indicating: "In most of your eyes, the two-point shot, just isn't an option".
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But on Tuesday afternoon, less than six weeks out from the 2020 season restarting on August 1, the league decided to side with the few over the many.
The initial backlash wasn't enough to sway the competition from implementing the drastic change and netball's premier competition Down Under will go ahead with the two-point shot for 2020.
Two goals will be awarded for succesful shots taken from the outer portion of the circle in the final five minutes of each quarter.
To say the introduction of the change went over poorly would be an understatement.
Former Australian representative and current Melbourne Vixens player Caitlin Thwaites didn't bite her tongue when seeing the news.
"Players not being consulted over the biggest rule change netball has seen is terrible," she tweeted.
She wasn't alone in her criticism.
The move to bring in the two-point shot was made by Super Netball Limited, the league commission established by Netball Australia, and will only be used in Suncorp Super Netball.
"We know that the long shot is statistically more challenging, but the game has always been predicated on the ability for our shooters to score from anywhere in the circle," Super Netball CEO Chris Symington said in a statement.
"We want to encourage this spectacular element of our game and, when combined with the introduction of rolling substitutions this year, we believe the Super Shot will spark new tactics, further showcase the world-class skills of our athletes and add another level of hype and excitement to our matches.
"With the ever-growing competition for the attention of fans, the time is right to introduce an innovation that will make the game even more dynamic and unpredictable."
to alienate & piss off the loyal fanbase— Guzman Wye Gomez (@jwyeNFL) June 23, 2020
Hearing players are not happy about this - especially re level of consultation or lack thereof. Be interesting to see how Netball Australia handles it if there is dissent from within playing group. Watch this space. #netball https://t.co/jNzsJR6ghz— Erin Delahunty (@della79) June 23, 2020
Geez, it's already hard enough being a defender now they get punished if they manage to push the shooters as far away from the post as possible. And yes, these shooters are good enough to sink them from the outer edge. https://t.co/IxvhYkeDBf— Brittany Mitchell (@BrittMitchell11) June 23, 2020
In Australia, the Netball league just decided to unilaterally and completely alter the shape and course of the game without consulting players. And they did it six weeks before the season starts.— Sam Vecenie (@Sam_Vecenie) June 23, 2020
Honestly, one of the craziest, dumb decisions I’ve ever seen from a league. https://t.co/dVkH9c2o6l