The new 2 point rule in the Australian Suncorp Super Netball

Updated: Sep 10, 2020

This was the tweet that went alongside the announcement by the Suncorp Super Netball competition that they were introducing a new two-goal "Super Shot". Any shots taken within 1.9m zone on the outer edge of the shooting circle will receive 2 points instead of the usual 1. It has caused some controversy because the announcement came as a bit of a surprise to the coaches (who had already selected their squads) and the competition committee, who claimed to not know anything about it!

The rule will only come in for the final 5 minutes of each quarter and for the 5 minutes of extra time should two teams draw (another addition for this season but less controversial!)

So, what do we think about this? On the one had it's understandable that the coaches felt a bit blindsided by this and I think it's sensible for large competitions to give significant notice of major changes like this so that teams can train and be selected on the basis of the conditions they will be playing under. There is bound to be a significant number of more traditional netballers who would argue that the game is already exciting enough and if it's not broken don't fix it! And there will be some who think the two point rule will add a more dynamic side to the game and move away from the "under the post" GSs that so many teams have become reliant on.

Another argument in favour is that Netball goals are a fairly underwhelming part of the game unlike a goal in football or a try in rugby which is celebrated by thousands. In netball the real excitement would probably be an amazing interception in a close game - and we saw a few of those in the Netball World Cup 2019! So, by making goal scoring a more important and exciting part of the game will it spice things up throughout?

The two point rule also adds another layer of tactical play which will keep things interesting. Are you going to sub your GS for another GA who can shoot from further out in the final 5 minutes of each quarter? Are teams with more flexible GSs like Jo Harten who can play GS or GA going to become more valuable? And how will it affect the feeds into the circle? Will we see the WA and C being more agile or feeding the ball from further away? And that's just the attack... it will also change the defensive game tremendously - will double marking a GS become a thing of the past? Will the defence zone more to try and stop the ball even getting to the circle? The list goes on! So it could end up being a bit of a headache for coaches as they have to reflect a new style of playing but the spectators may find it a welcome breath of fresh air.

Overall we're on the fence and looking forward to seeing some of the replays from the Suncorp Super to assess whether it changes the game much, and whether it's for the better. It will be interesting to see whether the teams that have adapted their game the most have an advantage or whether the tried and tested methods are the way to go for now...