Not a good day for Chelsea Pitman and the Thunderbirds. Picture SARAH REED
Not a good day for Chelsea Pitman and the Thunderbirds. Picture SARAH REED

Error-riddled T-Birds belted by Firebirds

ADELAIDE Thunderbirds coach Dan Ryan has told his players the 42-66 loss to Queensland Firebirds in Mile End on Sunday is totally unacceptable.

Claiming the performance was a massive backward step, he challenged the team to reflect on its approach to the game in the week coming off last week's bye.

The game was a return to those ugly early rounds with a flood of amateur mistakes, especially in the attack end when so much ball was simply thrown away.

"We started really well and from there things got harder and harder," Ryan said. "We have no one to blame but ourselves.

"Full credit to a ferocious opposition who worse us down and brought us back to where we were a month ago."

After the previous six games, Ryan has highlighted the positives to his team. Not this time.

"The previous six games we have been building," he said. "This was not a building block, but an absolute stumbling block."

Romelda Aiken rises above the opposition defence. (AAP Image/Daniel Munoz)
Romelda Aiken rises above the opposition defence. (AAP Image/Daniel Munoz) DANIEL MUNOZ

The height of Firebirds goal shooter Romelda Aiken was a huge headache for the Thunderbirds from the outset. Even when she missed, which was quite often, she secures the rebound.

It was promising early for the Thunderbirds when they led 11-10 after some brilliant play but Laura Geitz also became an issue.

The Firebirds defender was given enormous latitude by the umpires with her physical approach and that impacted on young Thunderbirds shooter Shimona Nelson's confidence and the ability of teammates to feed her.

As the game lengthened, so too did the error count as the home side coughed up a pile of simple mistakes. T