Former Australian captain Liz Ellis says serious questions need to be asked about why West Coast Fever continue to underperform in the ANZ Championship.
The legendary goalkeeper and Fox Sports commentator said it was inevitable coach Norma Plummer would face increasing pressure after the Fever slumped to a 1-4 record following their 17-goal loss to Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic in Tauranga last Sunday.
Plummer is in her third season at the helm of the Fever and has a winning percentage of 29 per cent. The WA team has never made the finals.
"If you were on the board of Netball WA or whoever makes their decisions - I don't know how they have got their structure set up - you have got to ask questions of the coach, it's her responsibility," Ellis said.
"Norma has been around long enough to know that it comes ultimately down to the coach.
"She's responsible for setting the agenda and that's her job."
Ellis said she was baffled by the Fever's lack of competitiveness, particularly against Australian opponents.
She said she expected the Fever to have fared better this season after adding star goal attack Nat Medhurst and experienced midcourters Chelsea Pitman and Khao Watts to their squad.
"There is something to do with the team that no matter who they put in there the wins just aren't coming," Ellis said.
"Fever have shown they can do it against the New Zealand teams but the real step up is against the Australian teams.
"From the outside looking in it looks like there is a bit of an inferiority complex and it's almost endemic in the team in that no matter who you put in there they are a little bit scared of the 'glamour' teams like the (NSW) Swifts, the (Melbourne) Vixens, the (Queensland) Firebirds and the (Adelaide) Thunderbirds, which is almost unfathomable given some of the players have come from those clubs."
Ellis said West Coast should still have designs on finals this season, despite being two wins outside the top four with six successive games against Australian teams on the horizon.
"Over the years there have been a lot of excuses made for Fever and made by Fever, but they have got the personnel so they should be producing," she said.