The Southern Steel have called in four replacements for tomorrow night's game against the bottom-placed Mainland Tactix to cover injuries sustained by players in their team van crash in Christchurch.

Four of the table-topping Steel players spent time in Christchurch hospital after their van collided with a car near the intersection of Fendalton Road and Memorial Ave en route from the airport to the city on Monday.

Midcourter Shannon Francois and shooter Jhaniele Fowler-Reid sustained minor injuries and were released later on Monday.

Shooter Te Paea Selby-Rickit suffered a rib injury and was released on Monday night, while captain Wendy Frew was admitted overnight.


She underwent surgery to repair injuries to her elbow and leg and will miss tomorrow night, along with Selby-Rickit. However a decision on whether Francois and towering goal shoot Fowler-Reid take the court is still to be made.

All four replacements, from the Beko League's Netball South team, have been involved in the Steel setup in pre-season or in the premiership.

They are shooters Aliyah Dunn and Olivia Bates - younger sister of national women's cricket star Suzie Bates - and midcourters Dani Gray and Sophie Erwood. Dunn has had court time for the Steel while Gray has warmed the bench.

The bus ended on its side after the collision.

Renowned for her tenaciousness, former Silver Fern Frew was adamant she would be "back on the court in no time".

"It's like a nightmare - it's such an awful, scary experience to be involved in for all of us. But we are a strong team and a strong franchise and we will get through it together. We've just got to look forward."

Frew said members of the public at the scene and the medical staff involved with the team's care were "exceptional".

"Everyone has just been incredible - people didn't hesitate to help. And I've had so many kind messages which I am truly grateful for."

The competition rules state that the Steel could have looked for players from any Beko League side, provided they had not played two ANZ Premiership games, which would make them protected players.

However there was a desire to stay within the south.

"We've put a lot of work into our development pathway for players and it's really important we support our athletes ourselves when we can," Steel communications manager Kate Buchanan said tonight.