Great Flinders football preview
Local football swings back in to action this week as teams prepare themselves for the back half of the season and run in to this years finals series.
Another important round awaits us with some important clashes that will help shape the top four – local rivals Ramblers and Cougars go head to head, Tumby Bay and Eyre United do battle in the other local derby, and in the final game Lock host ladder leaders United Yeelanna on the Roo’s home deck.
Lock v United Yeelanna
Lock face a tough assignment against the reigning premiers on their home turf.
If they are to be any chance of playing finals, now is the time to take a couple of scalps above them and press their case.
The break would have come at a good time for them with the hope of regaining some key players from injury to assist them back in to some form.
Damian Kelly has led by example and is having an outstanding season, as are the Heath boys, while Northcott and Siebert have been dangerous up forward.
They face a massive challenge though, with United Yeelanna going from strength to strength as the season has gone on and firming as short premiership favourites.
They have class across all parts of the ground, with Norton, Watson, Carr and the Crettenden boys clinical in their huge win over the Saints a fortnight ago.
You just can’t mount a case for the Roo’s in this one.
The Eagles simply look too good, too classy, and will win this one comfortably against a battling Lock side.
Cougars v Ramblers
Local arch rivals Cougars and Ramblers face off at Cummins, with the Magpies certain to be keen to atone for a disappointing showing against Tumby Bay in their last club game.
Cougars have won two of their past three games to get themselves back in to finals contention, and currently sit a game and percentage outside of the top four.
A Ramblers victory would all but stitch up a finals berth, so you would expect them to come out strongly on the rebound.
Kit Williams was well held a fortnight ago but has been in great touch up forward, Scotty Blacker and George Pedler have found plenty of it in recent weeks, and Pilgrim, Bilney and Mickan have had solid seasons to date.
Cougars form has been up and down with injuries and unavailable players wreaking havoc at the selection table but if they make the finals and get some key players back in the mix, then they could still have a say in this year’s proceedings.
Monfries and Moroney made welcome returns a fortnight ago, while Zeb Kenny, Levi Konitzka, West and the Green boys have been in good form over the past month.
This should be a closely fought, tough, hard encounter between two sides desperate for the win but I’m going with Ramblers to have enough class and experience to get them over the line by three to four goals.
Tumby Bay v Eyre United
In this week’s match of the round, an in form Tumby Bay side hosts their neighbouring rivals Eyre United on the Blues’ home deck.
The sides are coming off contrasting form lines, with Tumby winning their last two games, while the Saints have lost their last two, and were at the mercy of a rampaging Eagles side a fortnight ago in a contest that they will want to forget rather quickly.
The Blues have welcomed back some key players in recent weeks which has no doubt contributed to their turn around in form, and regular midfielders Mitch Lawrie and Jack Jacobs have been prominent.
Their defence led by Joe Walker and Josh Cave has been outstanding, while up forward Murphy, Calverley and Rees have given them some fire power and defensive pressure.
The Saints will be keen to get on the rebound and turn their form around in this one and prove the contest against Yeelanna was just a minor slip in their otherwise positive season.
They have some genuine class in their mix, with Malcolm Miller, Joe Burgoyne, Jordy Telfer, Taylor and Murray all quality players that have all been in outstanding form.
They will go in to this game as favourites but will need to be on the ball against an improving Tumby Bay outfit who will see this game as an opportunity to lock in a finals spot.
Tough one to pick on their form lines but the Saints may just get up in a close one by less than two goals but don’t be surprised by a Blues victory.