Stingrays goalkeeper Elyse Finlayson back for Marconi clash

Stingrays' Talitha Kramer (right) shows her strength against Marconi Stallions. Picture: ANDY ZAKELI

Stingrays' Talitha Kramer (right) shows her strength against Marconi Stallions. Picture: ANDY ZAKELI

Stingrays goalkeeper Elyse Finlayson believes she has regained her confidence between the posts after injury threatened to derail her season.

The custodian had been a regular in the Illawarra goal at the start of the campaign until a shin complaint kept her sidelined for an extended period.

The injury has since been tentatively identified as Compartment syndrome but it hasn't hindered Finlayson's return to the pitch.

And she is adamant, despite a nervy start, she is close to returning to her best ahead of the club's crucial match with Marconi Stallions on Sunday.

"It is always intimidating coming back because I guess you have to prove yourself again that you deserve to be on the pitch. But I have the confidence now and I trained really well on Wednesday night," she said.

"Hopefully I can get another good training session under my belt so we can win this game because it is pretty critical so we are still contending with the top-four."

A win against the Stallions in round 15 could potentially move Illawarra back into a finals spot depending on the result of a match between Sydney University (fifth) and North West Sydney Koalas (fourth).

Illawarra bounced back from a loss to Macarthur Rams a fortnight ago with a win against the Blacktown Spartans last weekend.

It moved the club into sixth on the ladder after a lacklustre patch saw the Stingrays drop to the foot of the competition.

Finlayson said it was like the Stingrays had a target on their back.

"Everyone just wants to beat the Stingrays," she said.

"I think it is because we have been such contenders in previous years. We won the title three years in-a-row and last year we were unlucky but we were still in the grand final.

"I think that's why ... because we are a good challenge."

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