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Bassett ready to shine for Diamonds

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 3/09/2016 Melissa Woods

After almost matching her best Test haul against England, Australian shooter Caitlin Bassett doesn't expect to get close against New Zealand when the unbeaten teams battle for the Quad Series netball trophy in Melbourne on Sunday.

World champions Australia are bracing for a battle royale at Margaret Court Arena, with the title on the line.

The Diamonds posted a 20-point win over England in their last outing with Bassett banking 46 of her 51 shots, while world No.2-ranked Silver Ferns similarly made short work of South Africa to set up the enthralling finale.

Australia haven't faced New Zealand since new Kiwi coach Janine Southby came into the role, while their opponents have also had a number of personnel changes.

Bassett said she'd been impressed with what she'd seen.

"Obviously New Zealand have been playing extremely well; they pumped England and had a really good game against South Africa so we know we're going to have to play really well to beat them," Bassett said.

"We're going to have to take that next step up in performance if we're going to win."

New Zealand are likely to try to stop the Bassett goal wave through veteran defender Katrina Grant and rookie keeper Jane Watson, who has impressed in two showings off the bench.

Bassett, who stands 12cm taller than Watson, was looking forward to the challenge.

"They've got a fairly new line-up so we're expecting a little different circle work but we know the Kiwis like that zone defence," she said.

"So they're going to be sitting off floating and looking to pick off those balls because I've got a little bit of height over all their defenders."

Diamonds wing attack Madi Robinson carried a leg injury into the England game but Bassett said she was a certainty to play in her home state as she continued her return from a knee reconstruction.

"Mads is loving being back and it feels like she never left," Bassett said.

"She's just so dominant out there it makes my life so much easier."

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