IT MAY SOUND simple, but ball retention is the key in Echuca United's hopes for a Murray Netball League grand final berth, according to coach Lisa Drysdale.
Standing in the Eagles way in tomorrow's preliminary final at Katandra is minor premier Rumbalara, whose single loss this season come at the hands of United.
While Rumba are expected to rely heavily on their long passing ability to move the ball up the court, Drysdale said the team that wins the short game would progress to the big dance.
"We're going to throw everything we've got at them," she said.
"From the very start we need to make sure we are taking care of the ball when we are moving it up the court.
"It was an area of our game we let ourselves down in against Moama in the first final but I believe we've learnt our lesson.
"Defensively we'll have to be alert to Rumba's long passes and physicality but they've proven they are adaptable.
"They've got a great bond as a team and we've got a lot of respect for what Rumba have done this year."
Just where Rumba's greatest strength lies is anybody's guess after Elenoa Naimalua (goal shooter) and Jess Bamblett (goalkeeper) finished one-two in the league best and fairest.
"There's no doubt we're going to have to limit their influence," Drysdale said.
"I'm confident our girls will be able to do that because they've continued to prove they are up for any challenge.
"If we can get on top at either end of the court, I think it will go a long way to helping us win the game."
Saturday's game will start at 1.30pm.