Eagles coach Matt Stasse gets a kick under pressure Justin Coole and Lynden Brewis lead a freight train to the ball
MDFL – One of the Mininera and District Football League’s most anticipated clashes will take place at Moyston tomorrow, with third-placed Moyston Willaura going head-to-head with the undefeated Tatyoon Hawks.
Tatyoon may be sitting on top of the ladder, but the team faces a challenging few weeks as it meets the remainder of the competition’s heavyweights. The Hawks were challenged by SM&W Rovers in a scrappy match last week and coach Julian Sambell knows his charges cannot afford to give the Pumas an inch.
“We had a tough game last week. We had a pretty bad second and third quarter. I don’t think it’s going to be any easier this week,” he said.
Sambell is confident the Hawks can come out on top, provided they can do what they know works for them.
He said his side would concentrate on winning the contested footy, especially if it’s wet.
“We need to make sure we’re clean with our disposals, which is no different to any other match,” he said.
Sambell will have the luxury of a full side to choose from, with the exception of midfielder Damian Cameron, who will miss a few weeks due to a shoulder injury sustained against SM&W Rovers.
The Hawks will have the services of Bradd Wilson, who was unavailable last week. Wilson will slot into the backline or midfield where needed, while Brandon Mason will be welcomed back to centre half forward.
Tatyoon has been strong all over the ground this season, particularly in goals where Aidan Bell and Ross Panther are leading the league’s goal kicking tally.
While Moyston Willaura’s defenders have been in good form, coach Daniel Guinane knows his team needs to limit supply to the dangerous forwards.
The Pumas were dealt a major blow last week, with key backman Trent Fiscalini out indefinitely after suffering a knee injury. Josh Day and ex-Hawk Rhys Cronin will both have additional responsibility over the next few weeks. Both players have been performing solidly in defence.
“Sam Seres matches up well on Aidan Bell so he could be another option for us,” Guinane said.
“I think it will be a good challenge for the young boys and a good hit out.
Guinane said the Pumas would stick to their game plan, which has served them well over the past seven weeks. He said if they took the game on, they’d hopefully come out on top.
A bumper crowd is expected, with the ‘legends’ match scheduled to take place earlier in the day.
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Wickliffe Lake Bolac will take confidence from last week’s convincing win over Great Western when it welcomes Penshurst to its home ground.
The Magpies will have their work cut out for them however, with the Bombers yet to drop a game at this stage of the competition.
Magpies coach Brad Keilar has been performing well in the ruck all season but will need his midfielders to stand up and offer support to deliver the ball quickly into the forward line.
The Magpies had plenty of contributors last week, with Josh Keys, Tim Blake and Danniel Smith all lively in goals.
Penshurst has its own forwards firing and the Magpies’ defenders will have to be on top of their game to keep the ball out of the hands of Grant Ewing, Chris Eales and Tim McGregor.
The Magpies have suffered well documented losses this season and may struggle to match it with the powerful Penshurst side, which recorded a comfortable 36-point win over Glenthompson Dunkeld last week.
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The Ararat Eagles enjoyed a glittering start to the season, but have faced some tough challenges over the past couple of weeks. Their run will not get any easier tomorrow when they go head-to-head with Glenthompson Dunkeld at Dunkeld.
The Rams are currently fourth on the ladder and will be keen to account for a loss to the Bombers.
Andrew Gould, Leigh Bubb and Liam Currer have been working hard through the midfield and up forward and will create some headaches for the Eagles.
Ararat will rely on the likes of Ash Leggett and Jamie Elder to provide plenty of run, along with junior Tom Taurau who is reaping the benefits of senior experience.
Recruit Nathan Wemyss, Nick Bulger and Aaron Jenkins continue to toil away and coach Matt Stasse is getting the most out of his charges.
While the Eagles will go in as underdogs, expect them to mount a strong challenge.
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SM&W Rovers will enter its encounter with Lismore Derrinallum as favourite after a gritty performance against Tatyoon last week.
The Bulldogs almost carried off a major upset against the Hawks and should set the pace against the Demons.
Dean McPhan, Wayne Loader and Andrew Stewart are in form for Lismore Derrinallum and performed well during last round’s loss to Caramut, but the boys will have their work cut out for them against a higher-ranked opponent.
With Lee Marshall and Billie Leskosek leading the way up forward and a host of other players in good touch, including Daniel Currie, Jonathan Box and John Forbes, the Bulldogs should pick up the four points at Mininera.
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Despite a tough welcome to the competition, Great Western remains optimistic about tomorrow’s match against Hawkesdale Macarthur.
The Lions have shown vast improvement over the past three weeks, with youngsters Tom McCord and Nick McCartney beginning to gel well together. Lachie Green has been on fire of late and the Lions may also welcome back Cody Virgona this round.
The Eagles were unconvincing in their defeat of Woorndoo Mortlake in round seven and cannot afford to relax around the Lions at Hawkesdale tomorrow.
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In the final match of round eight, Caramut will play host to Woorndoo Mortlake.
SMW Rovers v Lismore/Derrinallum: Tommy Cooper and Leo Mooney (at Mininera).
Wickliffe/Lake Bolac v Penshurst: Adrian Pieters and David Reynolds (at Lake Bolac).
This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.