Another big week of action this week in Great Flinders with important games on the card – none more so than the match of the round between Tumby and Cougars with plenty riding on the outcome.
Lock host the Saints in a game that will put one of these two sides in the top four, and Yeelanna and Ramblers go head to head in the grand final rematch at Cummins.
Ramblers v United Yeelanna
The Eagles are unblemished to date this season, and Ramblers are coming off a solid performance against the Saints last week which will see them go in to this contest with plenty of optimism.
One senses they are far from peaking this year, with several key players missing multiple matches, and their record come September needs no introduction.
Billy Pilgrim was outstanding last week leading from the front, James Pedler is back in good form, while the experienced trio of Mickan, George Pedler and Shirley have given them good service each week.
Wes Bilney has been in great form in front of goals, and he is one player the Eagles’ defence will need to monitor closely.
They boast the most efficient defence in the competition, with Crettenden, Watson, Norton and Lawrie leading the way, and the return of Ricky Skinner, who may get the gig of picking up Bilney, further enhances their defensive stocks.
The Eagles are also an offensive weapon with multiple scoring options, and their midfield is a class unit led by Watson, Carr and Michael ‘Plugga’ Crettenden, but they also have plenty of options to churn through if required.
This should be a hard fought contest, but you simply cannot tip against the Eagles at the moment, they will win by 2-3 goals.
Lock v Eyre United
Lock host Eyre United in an important contest for both clubs, with the winner going in to outright fourth position on the ladder.
The Roos were brave against Tumby last week but fell short, while the Saints came up against a powerful Magpies outfit that were far too strong.
They will need to get key players back in a hurry to keep their season on track, especially live-wire forward Scott Young who has been in great touch for them up forward.
Traeger, Telfer, Hall and Neale continue to find the footy for their side, and youngster Mitch Anesbury continues to impress, but they need a lift from the second tier players to remain competitive.
Lock will most likely be without in form onballer Keenan Bury who looked to suffer a serious knee injury last week, but the form of Hetzel, Morton, Brown and Siebert will ensure their midfield remains strong.
Kelly has been fantastic in defence, Lochie Heath is a quality user of the ball across halfback and Northcott is a dangerous player up forward for opposition defenders to man up on.
Much of the result will depend on who is in and out, but going to go with the Roos to get up on their home deck in a close one.
Tumby Bay v Cougars
An in form Tumby Bay host Cougars in the final game, with the Blues looking to extend their hold on second spot, while Cougars are desperate for more wins to keep themselves in touch with the four.
Tumby Bay should regain key players, most noticeably Nigel James who missed last week. Likewise Cougars will look forward to key players returning from injury and unavailability.
The Blues have built a strong midfield with experienced players in Lawrie, Franklin and James, while Hind and youngster Murphy give them pace and quality ball use across the ground.
Their back half has been outstanding led by Joe Walker, and the unheralded Edmonds, Budgjea and experience of Jacob Cave make them a difficult unit to score against.
They will face their challenges this week though, with Hazelgrove, Ness, Moroney and possibly Monfries all likely to spend time up forward for Cougars, and with the class of Konitzka and Paech in their midfield, they are sure to get some opportunities.
The clash of Konitzka and James in the ruck should be a beauty with both in outstanding form.
This game could go either way – going with the Blues to win a tight one at home based on their form being a little more consistent of late.