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From slippery ads on-court and fans lighting the match with their phones to an eventually abandoned clash: Inside the most bizarre Super Netball game of all-time

  •  Court dramas cause match to be abandoned
  •  Fans forced to light stadium with phones
  •  Match stunningly declared a draw

The Adelaide Thunderbirds clash with the NSW Swifts was abandoned on Saturday due to technical issues after the most bizarre scenes ever witnessed in a Super Netball game.

The match was stunningly declared a 25-25 draw after work to the court surface and a 20 minute power outage forced an early end to the match.

The drama started before the match when the court was declared unsafe to play on because of slippery decals at Netball SA Stadium in Adelaide, which delayed the game by an hour.

Signage stickers were then removed and the court was washed and buffed before the game was allowed to begin.

When the game got underway, the Swifts led 16-12 at quarter-time but the Thunderbirds fought back to level the scores at 25-25 by the halfway mark.

The match was stunningly declared a 25-25 draw after work to the court surface and a 20 minute power outage forced an early end to the match

The match was stunningly declared a 25-25 draw after work to the court surface and a 20 minute power outage forced an early end to the match

A potentially fascinating second-half battle did not eventuate, with a blackout preventing the match resuming and being completed in time.

Fans were stunned as the lights went out, with many holding up the torches on their phones to try and keep the venue illuminated. 

Both teams took two points.

Angry fans took to social media to react to the chaotic scenes.

‘This is a ridiculous outcome for a professional sporting league,’ commented a twitter user.

‘This whole situation is rubbish. This is a professional netball league. Where are the standards? The players and supporters deserve better,’ said another.

‘In all my years of watching netball. I have seen a game called off due to power outage. Shame it wasn’t finished since it looked like a cracker of a second half,’ said a third.

It is not clear why decals were removed so late, as both teams had trained on the court in the 24 hours before the match was played. 

It is not clear why decals were removed so late, as both teams had trained on the court in the 24 hours before the match was played

It is not clear why decals were removed so late, as both teams had trained on the court in the 24 hours before the match was played

‘It’s just really disappointing and very unfortunate circumstances tonight that a power outage has got us,’ Netball Australia head of integrity Nicole Malcher told Fox Sports.

‘Earlier today we had to delay the match (for the unsafe surface) … we extended it to allow up to complete the match in the 120 minutes.

‘Because we’ve extended it into that time, we don’t have enough time to complete it within the session time window (after the power outage) so we do have to declare the match as at half time.’

Thunderbirds, who won their opening-round game, moved to six points, while Swifts collected their first two points of the campaign following a loss to Collingwood last time out.

‘To have a draw and not being able to have the opportunity to win the game it is really sad,’ Swifts shooter Helen Housby told Fox Sports. ‘There were some emotions in the changing room.

‘It’s a short season and every single point counts so we know that there’s probably a couple of points gone missing there for us.’

Adelaide, who lost captain Hannah Petty with a rolled ankle in the first quarter, had the momentum going into halftime, outscoring the visitors 6-1 in the last four minutes.

‘If we had played out the match, Thunderbirds had the capacity to win,’ Adelaide’s Jamaica international goalkeeper Shamera Sterling told Fox Sports.

‘It’s a bummer that we had to split the four points.’

Adelaide’s English shooter Eleanor Cardwell made all 13 of her attempts, including three two-point shots, with Thunderbirds shooting at 92 per cent and Swifts at 76 per cent.

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