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Fever and Vixens match postponed

The West Coast Fever and Melbourne Vixens have exchanged a war of words, with the Vixens failing to travel to Perth as scheduled for the club's second Grand Final rematch of the 2021 Suncorp Super Netball season.

The match was postponed on Friday by Netball Australia due to the “rapidly evolving Covid-19 situation and its impact on interstate travel”.

“Having discussed a number of options with both clubs, Netball Australia has cancelled the match with a view to discussing next steps with a range of stakeholders in the coming days,” NA said via a statement.

The Vixens claimed three of their players were refused entry into Perth after visiting northern NSW during a bye round last weekend following their team’s June 12 clash against Collingwood in Sydney.

“The Vixens were due to leave their Queensland hub on Friday morning for their game at RAC Arena on Sunday, however due to border restrictions in Western Australia, the Vixens will remain in Queensland until fully cleared,” the Melbourne club said in a statement.

“Despite players and staff not visiting any exposure site or being a close contact, the changing border restrictions into Western Australia now stipulate that any travel from NSW in the last 14 days is a risk.

The club has worked closely with and been supported by the league, Netball Australia and the Players’ Association throughout the decision-making processes across the last month that has seen the Vixens, Collingwood, Swifts and Giants all relocate to Queensland, with the safety and wellbeing of all players and staff the priority, with the aim to continue the season as closely aligned to the fixture as possible.”

However, the Fever claim the Vixens are to blame for the game’s postponement.

“West Coast Fever is extremely disappointed that Melbourne Vixens have refused to travel to Perth for our fixture at RAC Arena on Sunday, June 27,” the Fever said in a statement.

“This is not in the best interests of the competition and devastating for our club, members, sponsors and fans.

“We are awaiting a ruling from Netball Australia on what this means in regards to the result of the game.”

Perth are currently undefeated, having won their first seven games of the season while the reigning premiers Melbourne sit bottom of the table with just one win to their name from seven matches.

The Fever sit fourth due to their 12 point penalty handed down in the off-season for a breach of the salary cap in the 2018 and 2019 seasons.

IMAGE: Suncorp Super Netball


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