Firebirds' quest to up Super Netball grunt

Murray Wenzel
Jeff Horn squares off with Queensland Firebirds players Gretel Tippett (l) and Gabi Simpson

Queensland Firebirds want to be the most physical team in Super Netball, so who better to train with than Jeff Horn.

It made sense to captain Gabi Simpson, who says her teammates have been inspired by the Brisbane boxer's rise to world champion status in the past 18 months.

She met and trained with Horn on Thursday, saying there was much they could take from his approach onto the court against the Giants, the title favourites, on Saturday.

"We need to learn how to take the hits. Netball's becoming more physical and Jeff knows how to take the hits," Simpson said.

"We don't do too much boxing (at training) but we make sure when we take the court we go hard against each other.

"It's about putting pressure on them every time they catch the ball."

The Firebirds' dominance of Australian netball took a hit when they missed the finals in last season's inaugural Super Netball campaign.

But they have responded since a first-round loss to the NSW Swifts to beat Sunshine Coast and the Melbourne Vixens in the last fortnight.

"We wanted to make sure we hit this competition and stamp our authority straight away," Simpson said.

"We've been able to do that."