The Queensland Firebirds will begin a new era on Saturday afternoon when they face the Collingwood Magpies at the Queensland State Netball Centre.
The $44 million facility, which is located in the South-east suburb of Mount Gravatt, ended a two-decade battle to find a home for netball in Queensland.
The Centre has seven community courts, a main Show Court and state-of-the-art fitness and physiotherapy centre.
So much effort has gone into getting this facility ready and Firebirds captain Gabi Simpson is excited to play on the new court.
“I wouldn’t say the pressure is on, I would say we are lifted by all those people who have worked extremely hard to get us to the place we are right now," she said.
"It’s really motivating to have them right behind us and to know the hard work they’ve put in.
"I’m so excited to come out here an start this new era of netball based on the back of a legacy left."
The Brisbane-based side is coming off a 12 goal loss to competition heavyweights the Melbourne Vixens but the team are looking to bounce back in front of their home crowd.
It will be a tough job as they come up against favourites and ladder leaders in the Magpies.
“They had a great game on the weekend beating Lightning by a few and I guess their main target is Shimona at the back there," Simpson said.
"Nat Medhurst feeding her very well so the key is to shut down the front and making sure we put her under pressure when taking that ball.”
With 464 national league games under the Firebirds belt, they face a Magpies team which boasts eight current or former internationals and nearly twice the national league experience.
However, Simpson is confident in the side and the way they've prepared this week.
“From the disappointment came an extremely motivated week at training. Everyone has really stepped up so it’s going to be exciting,” Simpson said.
The match between the Firebirds and Magpies will be broadcast live on Channel 9 from 3pm AEST.