As the 2019 Suncorp Super Netball season approaches, Giants Netball goal keeper Sam Poolman expects the competition to go up another level this year.
The 28-year-old minor premiership winner has been part of a national netball competition since the days of the ANZ Championship with the Adelaide Thunderbirds.
She even bagged a Premiership during her time with the South Australian side before making the move to Giants in 2017 when the new franchise was introduced.
However, heading into the third instalment of the Super Netball competition, Poolman knows that the league is only going to get stronger.
"We've seen each year that the game is getting faster, it's getting more skilled, athletes are getting better, and teams are going to get better," she said.
"So at the start of the year, everyone asks which teams are going to be the team to beat or who's going to be the top teams, everyone really struggles now to actually answer that question because every year teams of beating each other.
"You can't pick the top four until the end of the round and I think that's fantastic for our sport so there's been a lot of player movement and I think teams are just step up again, then they have in 2017 and 2018."
It was a heartbreaking blow to the Giants, who had claimed the minor premiership, 2018 campaign with losses in both the major semi-final to West Coast Fever then to eventual Premiers Sunshine Coast Lightning in the preliminary final.
While this is something that has weighed on the mind of the players who were part of that team, Poolman said, it is also providing motivation.
"Obviously, it does at the time and it was devastating that our season was over. It was certainly a long offseason to keep feeling that but we do have new players in the team this year," she said.
"It is a new group and if anything, it certainly provides motivation to be better and why we didn't win that game. So I guess the players that did play, it will always be in the back of our minds.
"We have a new group and we just want to be better than we were last year."
There have been big changes in the off-season with all players coming off their contracts resulting in mass player movement around the eight clubs.
For the Giants, they gained three new players from other clubs including Australian Diamond and two-time Super Netball Champion Caitlin Bassett. Unfortunately, Bassett is yet to make her debut in the orange dress having suffered a wrist injury in the Diamonds Quad Series preparation.
However, the side has been preparing well for the upcoming season with the inaugural #TeamGirls Cup in Brisbane last month a helping hand.
The Giants finished second in their Pool with only a loss and two wins, including a victory over eventual champions Magpies but lost 46-44 to Lightning in the third-place playoff.
"We were excited to finally get to play against different teams," Poolman said.
"We started not so great the first night against the Swifts and one thing that she [Julie] said to us from the weekend was that we just want to walk away from every game better than when we started and keep seeing those improvements.
"As much that's nice to win games in preseason you are looking for and the things that you're doing well and can start building on and then those little missing links that you need to continually work on to get right before the season starts."
With just 20 days until their season begins, the Giants are hoping to go further than they did previously.
The team has made the finals series for the past two seasons, having just missed out on lifting the trophy to Lightning in 2017.
"Personally, I have full confidence in the playing group in a club and we're in really great hands with Julie Fitzgerald," Poolman said.
"We want to win games each week we want to be for performing individually and as a unit and as a team.
"We're very focused on the task at hand and our game plan and what we need to do well, and what our opposition does well.
"I think there's just complete excitement and readiness to play."
The Giants face their crosstown rivals NSW Swifts on April 27 in the opening round of their 2019 Super Netball season.