Australia's Caitlin Bassett (centre) says it will be a Diamonds-New Zealand final for the netball gold medal at next year's Commonwealth Games.
Australia's Caitlin Bassett (centre) says it will be a Diamonds-New Zealand final for the netball gold medal at next year's Commonwealth Games. Mark Baker

It's Kiwis and us for Games gold

NETBALL: Australian captain Caitlin Bassett predicts the Diamonds and New Zealand will fight it out for the gold medal at next year's Commonwealth Games.

England and South Africa are improving, but the Aussie sharpshooter believes it will be Australia and Silver Ferns in the main game at the Gold Coast Games.

Australia and New Zealand square off for the Diamonds' last international of the year in the final Constellation Cup match today at Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney.

The three matches in the cup so far have led Bassett (pictured) to predict the Kiwis will be Australia's main hurdle at the Games.

"I still think it will be us and them," Bassett said.

"England (who beat New Zealand last month in the Quad series) have improved immensely and so have South Africa (who beat England in the Quad series).

"But I think Australia and New Zealand still have the experience to get through."

Since netball was added to the games program in 1998, every final has been contested between the current No.1 and No.2 sides.

New Zealand has won twice - in 2006 and 2010 - while defending champions Australia have won gold in 1998, 2002 and 2014.

Coach Lisa Alexander has said she wants to be close to knowing the make-up of her Commonwealth Games team by the end of the cup series although there is room for players to force their way in during the quad series in January.

"I think what you will see is we will get the data from this series and that will have a big effect on who is chosen," Alexander said.

News Corp Australia

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