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The Southland netball team of 1983 played in the Skellerup Trophy Tournament in 1983, with the five first grade teams in the South Island competing it made a good measurement of where the team was at.
The two top teams were Canterbury and Otago who both showed they were the teams to be afraid of.
Southland struggled with their inexperience but it bides well for the future and it was invaluable lessons that they would learn from playing these two teams.
Southland's game against South Canterbury was more even with the score reflecting this by being 12-12 at half time. Vivienne Harding, centre for Southland never let up and intercepted a lot of ball in mid court to send the ball back to her shooters. She was also well supported by Julie Wilson at wing defence.
Southland went down to Canterbury 41-14 where the shoots hardly got to put the ball up as it was more often than not that it did not reach the circle.
Southland lost to Otago 34-19, but Southland put in a bigger effort with Lynley Smith and Linda De Ruyter keeping a tighter reign over the Otago's shoots.
Canterbury Country was a team they probably could have beaten as shoots, Lynne McKenzie and Teresa Panagiotidis combined well in the circle and with Julie Wilson at wing defence working tirelessly all game, it was not enough and they went down 35-24.
Canterbury beat Otago 36-29 in the final.
Reference: Evans, Helen. August 1983. Southland Has One Win. The Southland Times.
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