Playing and watching games at Worlds, I saw a need for Australian senior teams to improve their defence. While the Junior Women were a defensive machine, due to well-thought out tactics and utilisation of players, getting stops in the Open division, for instance, depends more heavily on winning one-on-one matchups.
You need to be able to put players on the field who can really pressure a thrower or cutter, or are are really effective at getting blocks. As an example, when the Dingos played their pool game vs USA, we scored regularly thanks to an athletic offence. But we only produce two turnovers from the opposition. That won't win you the game.
This is a call for us to develop the next generation of shutdown defenders and blockgetters.
What does the Australian landscape of defence look like?
We have a culture of playing sport in this country.
We have good tactics. Many elite teams have a wide repertoire of man-on-man and junk defences.
We have athletes. We continue to recruit some very athletic people, either 6'4" aerial monsters or very speedy runners.
But there are some basic skills that don't appear often enough. Reading the cut of an offensive player. Guarding the dump. Running to the mark to prevent a huck. Not biting on a throwing fake. Spotting both where your man and the disc is, and where other players are. Not being deceived by a simple jab-step fake. Knowing how much or how little to turn your hips.
This is a call for existing coaches to develop these skills. And a call for more coaches.