The following previews were written by FDBA staff member and current university student (Bachelor of Sports Media) Dylan Smith.

His thoughts and opinions may not be shared by the FDBA Front Office.

Sunday Masters

When: Sunday, 28th of March – 6:00 pm

Where: Frankston Basketball Stadium – Court 1

Who: Devils vs Giants

Last time they met: Devils-32 defeat Giants-19

The Devils come into the grand final without a single loss this season on the back of great campaigns from Tony Burke (19.8 points per game) and Michael Troyahn (18 points per game).

The Giants boast their own good record, winning 7 games from 9 appearances this season thanks to good scoring output from James Mantella (11.2 points per game) and Chris Alderson (9.8 points per game).

While the Devils appear to be the favourite in this one, the Giants are on a roll, beating Legends Plus by 12 in the semi-final and cruising past a formidable team in Physio’s Delight by 26 points in the preliminary final.

The Giants will have their hands full with the Devils possessing one of the most potent offences in the league, putting up 510 points across nine games this season in comparison to the Giants 384.

However, this game could be won on the defensive end, the Giants conceded only 26.5 points per game this season while the Devils allowed 29 points per game.

If the Devils leading men Burke and Troyahn find an early rhythm it may be difficult for the Giants to keep up in this one.

However, the Giants possess a solid defence and may be able to find a way to slow the game down and put an end to the Devils undefeated streak.

Prediction: Devils by 7

Sunday Men

When: Sunday, 28th of March – 5:00 pm

Where: Frankston Basketball Stadium – Court 1

Who: Sneaky Snakes vs Punjabi MC

Last time they met: Sneaky Snakes-47 defeat Punjabi MC-37

The two highest scoring teams in the league will go head-to-head again on Sunday night.

Offensively and defensively, the Snakes and Punjabi’s stats are almost identical.

Punjabi are marginally better on offence, pouring in 46.4 points per game across nine contests this season, whilst the Snakes put up 46.1 points per game.

The Snakes have allowed 35.2 points per game through nine matches and Punjabi have conceded 35.6 points per game.

Punjabi are a strong squad, only losing twice this season, however those two losses both came at the hands of the Snakes, who defeated them in round nine and in the semi-final.

The Snakes may have to rely on their number one scoring threat Dyllan Jack, who scored a whopping 21.2 points per game this season.

There will be no shortage of offence in this one with Punjabi having a go to scorer of their own in Daniel Clough who put up 17.4 points per game.

While this should be an entertaining and offensive minded game, the team who puts in the most effort defensively should come out on top.

Prediction: Sneaky Snakes win in double overtime

Sunday Mixed A

When: Sunday, 28th of March – 6:20 pm

Where: Frankston Basketball Stadium – Court 3

Who: Bulls vs Renegades

Last time they met: Bulls-46 defeat Renegades-42

The Bulls have charged into the grand final on a five-game winning streak, while the Renegades are in fine form as well, having won six of their last seven games.

However, these top teams have found success in much different ways.

The Bulls score at will, averaging an outstanding 55.7 points per game this season, while the Renegades have the best defence in the league, conceding only 30.8 points per game.

This gritty defence has allowed the Renegades to be within striking distance in their two head-to-head matchups with the Bulls this season.

The Renegades have given up just 44 and 46 points in their two outings, well below the Bulls season average.

Despite losing those two games to the Bulls, the Renegades will be confident their defence will give them every chance to win come Sunday night.

The Renegades might even be considered favourites in this contest, with two of the Bulls top three scorers Bailey Roberts (11.7 points per game) and Rose Lane (11.3 point per game) being ruled out of Sunday’s matchup.

The Renegades will also welcome back the services of Hannah Dixon (8.4 points per game) as she was unable to play in the Renegades 46-42 loss to the Bulls just a fortnight ago.

This shapes up to be an intriguing contest and will be battle of different game styles.

Prediction: Renegades by 4

Sunday Mixed B

When: Sunday, 28th of March – 5:10 pm

Where: Frankston Basketball Stadium – Court 2

Who: Avo-cardio vs Velvet Thunder

Last time they met: Avo-cardio-41 defeat Velvet Thunder-34

Both teams have battled hard this season, emerging with five wins apiece during the home and away season.

Avo-cardio and Velvet Thunder appear to be evenly matched offensively, scoring 38 and 39.3 points per game, respectively.

Velvet Thunder also appear to have a slight edge on the defensive end too, allowing 35.2 points per game, while Avo-cardio give up 38.5 points per game.

This shapes up to be a very physical game, with both teams leading scorers Adam Burhop (11 points per game) and Rowan Hogenbirk (14.5 points per game) fouling out in the semi-final just a fortnight ago.

If both teams can keep their top scorers out of foul trouble, it may be a key to securing the win.

Ebony Treweek (6 points per game) and Courtney Wright (7.7 points per game) must also play pivotal roles for their respective teams if they are to find a way to win.

This should be a very close game, the team that maintains their composure during the final stages of this match will walk away with the victory.

Prediction: Velvet Thunder by 2

Sunday Mixed C

When: Sunday, 28th of March – 6:10 pm

Where: Frankston Basketball Stadium – Court 2

Who: Pratt & Co vs Charged

Last time they met: Pratt & Co-50 defeat Charged-46

Since coming down from A/B grade early in the season, Pratt & Co have had an undefeated summer, winning their last seven games while scoring at a league best rate of 44 points per game.

Despite defeating Charged twice this season already, Sunday night’s matchup is far from a forgone conclusion.

Charged sits at the top of the ladder for a reason, winning six out of nine games in the home and away season and possess the best defence in the league, allowing just 32.3 points per game.

Two of Charged’s three losses have come against Pratt & Co, however, the average losing margin in those matchups is just five points and proves they are every chance of pulling out a victory.

Pratt & Co’s dynamic duo Paige Donnelly (12.6 points per game) and Steven Thomas (14 points per game) will be tough for Charged to handle.

In their two head-to-heads with Charged this season, Donnelly and Thomas have contributed a whopping 63% of their total teams scoring output, it will be intriguing to see how Charged choose to guard these two on Sunday.

Look for Lachlann Argus (13.3 points per game) and Christian Tsiampas (11.1 points per game) to take control of the offence for Charged, especially Tsiampas who knocked down four shots from three-point range in their last matchup.

It is important to note that Charged has played with only five players for much of the season and will be rolling out a similar strategy on Sunday.

Will the lack of rest catch up to them in a long hard-fought game? Or will their enhanced fitness from playing without subs improve their chances late in the match? Time will tell.

Prediction: Charged by 3

Sunday Mixed D

When: Sunday, 28th of March – 5:20pm

Where: Frankston Basketball Stadium – Court 3

Who: Average Joes vs Frost

Last time they met: Average Joes-54 defeat Frost-39

Average Joe’s have won five on the trot and will look to make it six when they take on Frost in the grand final on Sunday.

Despite winning six of their first seven games, including a win over the Joes, Frost have struggled as of late, losing three of their last four outings.

Frost will have to be careful that this game doesn’t get away from them, the Joe’s have averaged 59 points per game in their last three and 41.1 over the course of the season.

The team leaders they will have to watch out for Brylee Nicholson (11.25 points per game) and Francis Hempel (10.5 points per game) will be the focal points of the offence.

It’s hard to count out Frost though, who are a very well-rounded team and have players such as Elizabeth Gascard (10.5 points per game) and Jonathan Davies (10 points per game) who are capable of putting up big numbers in the points category.

Despite the Joes being favourites, I can foresee an upset win for Frost if they control the tempo and force the Joes to play a grind it out game which they have been unfamiliar with these last few weeks.

This will be a fun game to watch and could go either way.

Prediction: Average Joes by 7