It was a convincing 10-goal win for the MG Mystics over the visiting AVIS Magic in round 5 of the ANZ Premiership at The Trusts Arena on Monday.

In a nod to the team’s 17-year-history and in honour of Heritage Round, the Mystics took the court in a special replica of the team’s very first royal blue and red dress worn during the team’s maiden season in what was the ANZ Championship in 2008.

The Mystics stormed out to a ten goal lead at the end of the first quarter, courtesy of some extraordinary defensive work and slick attacking play.

Wing-attack Peta Toeava served up the highlight of the quarter with a stunning intercept on the transverse line, while Phoenix Karaka and Carys Stythe produced their fair share of turnover ball in the defensive end, picking up a number of rebounds and intercepts that the team swiftly turned into points on the board.

Magic goal-attack Saviour Tui was a strong presence in the air, however the combined defensive pressure from Stythe and Karaka forced the Magic to make several errors allowing the hosts to expand their lead.

In the shooting circle Hannah Glen once again proved her worth from long-range, while Filda Vui worked her angles well managing to find clear space under the post.

The Magic made a raft of substitutions at the quarter break and returned to court with a renewed sense of urgency on defence.

Captain Erena Mikaere made her presence felt, managing an impressive block on Hannah Glen’s shot thanks to her expert timing and extraordinary elevation. Despite Mikaere’s efforts, the Mystics continued to build on their lead, putting a 20-point margin on the visitors at one point.

Catherine Hall replaced Carys Stythe at goal-keeper and took no time to answer back to Mikaere, getting her own block on the shot of Saviour Tui.

Mystics mid-courters Tayla Earle and Peta Toeava maintained great composure on attack under heavy pressure from the Magic, looking after possession and delivering clean ball into their shooters.

The Magic were left searching for answers heading into half-time, still trailing the Mystics by a whopping 18 points at 34 – 16.

It was a slower quarter for the Mystics in the third quarter, scoring just eight goals to the Magic’s 13.

The Magic did well to keep the Mystics feeders off the circle edge, opening up opportunities for Erena Mikaere and Georgia Takarangi to pick off ball.

Phoenix Karaka was a workhorse on defence, adding another intercept to her tally and helping to shut down Saviour Tui who led the shooting for the Magic putting up almost 80% of the team’s attempts at goal.

Captain Michaela Sokolich-Beatson enjoyed a rare stint at goal-defence early in the third quarter, while Phoenix Karaka moved into goal-keeper and Katie Te Ao took the court at wing-defence.

Centre Tayla Earle disrupted the Magic’s flow through court, picking off two turnovers and seeing the ball into her shooters to convert into points.

The Mystics led the Magic 42 – 29 heading into the final stanza.

The Magic again had the upper hand over the Mystics in the fourth quarter, scoring 15 goals to the Mystics’ 12, however it proved too little too late.

Still with a hefty lead, the Mystics took the opportunity to experiment with combinations, moving Tayla Earle to wing-attack and Katie Te Ao to centre. The pair moved together well, creating strong angles around the circle edge.

The physicality turned up a notch, with the Magic desperate for turnover ball and the opportunity to claw back some points.

Despite a late run from the Magic, the Mystics managed to hold on to the advantage and close out the match 54 to 44.