Diamonds coach Lisa Alexander has revealed she used an old trick from the Ric Charlesworth playbook to help inspire her team to victory over NZ in the Constellation Cup decider.
Australia's 53-46 win over the Silver Ferns in Perth on Sunday levelled the series at 2-2, meaning the Diamonds retained the Constellation Cup because of a superior goal percentage.
The pressure was on Australia leading into the match after they were beaten by a goal in Sydney in the third Test.
In a bid to help her troops come out firing in Perth, Alexander turned to some of the quirky methods employed by master hockey coach Charlesworth, who led the Hockeyroos to two gold medals.
"We did a Ric Charlesworth. I let them coach themselves on Tuesday," Alexander said.
"We didn't tell them, it was a shock. They did really well.
"The idea was to get them talking and take responsibility to step up and to know what to do in the critical moments, and I think you saw that out there (on Sunday)."
Star goalshooter Caitlin Bassett said her and the players embraced the move.
"Being a Perth girl, I'd heard of the Ric Charlesworth, where he set the training and then hid in the bushes and watched to see what the group had done," Bassett said.
"When we got to training and Lisa said you're going to coach yourselves, I was like, 'Yep cool, here we go'.
"I think it definitely gave the group confidence. That's what Lisa's really good at - empowering us players.
"Yes it's great to have experienced, elite coaches helping us out and telling us what to do.
"But when you're out on court you can't run to the sideline and be asking constantly. You've got to work it out yourself and within your teammates. It definitely helped our performance."
Veteran Diamonds shooter Caitlin Thwaites said the win over NZ was the perfect way for her to bow out of international netball.
"This team has been a really special part of my life," Thwaites said.
"I'm really excited to see what's happening in the future for this group.
"I've had a few teary moments over the last few days, but that's just generally me. I cry at the drop of the hat anyway.
"In the next few weeks I'll have more time to reflect."
Australian Associated Press