ROUND 1 WNWBL PLAYER OF THE WEEK

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For the second straight season, Amber Merritt has claimed the Player of the Week honours in the opening weekend after leading Perth Wheelcats to a 4-0 record in Round 1.

Friday night saw the Wheelcats fight out a two-point victory over Sydney Metro and Merritt finished with a monster double-double of 18 points and 13 rebounds to go with six assists and a steal.

The following morning, Perth proved too strong for the Queensland Comets in a re-match of last year’s gold medal game and Merritt was again dominant inside the paint.

She shot 17-30 for a game-high 34 points and came close to a quadruple-double with 18 rebounds, eight assists and eight steals.

Pulling down nine offensive boards, Merritt more than doubled Queensland as a team on the offensive glass while her eight interceptions helped the Wheelcats pile on a 39-6 advantage in points off turnovers.

On Sunday, Perth took on Kilsyth at 8am and claimed another tight win, scoring the last four points of the game to prevail 53-49.

With only five players hitting the court for the Wheelcats, Merritt played all 40 minutes and tallied another double-double with 20 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists while making her presence felt at the defensive end again with one steal and two blocks.

Just four hours later, Perth wrapped up Round 1 with a strong performance against the Red Dust Lady Heelers and Merritt fell just short of a triple-double while playing 32 minutes.

Scoring ten points in the final term to finally put away their opponents, Merritt recorded 27 points, 12 boards and eight assists overall in the 67-47 win.

Round 1 Amber Merritt Stats: 24.8 points on 49% shooting, 14 rebounds (five offensive), 7.3 assists, 2.5 steals and a block per game.

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