Friday Forecast: Finals, Week 1

Qualifying Final
Palm Beach Currumbin vs. Western Magpies
Saturday August 27, 2:00pm, Salk Oval

The go to

Lions: Will open this one up by foot. Whether it’s looking into the corridor, or using the lateral short option, they will look to get it moving quickly so that the Magpies don’t have time to set up in their back half

Magpies: Win the inside ball, feed it out, get it in long and quick.


What they will try and stop

Lions: Can’t let them dominate the contested possession. If they do, the Lions won’t get close in the clearance count.

Magpies: Have to hem the Lions in down the line, slow them up, and not let them have the opportunity to hit their forwards with a 20m bullet. Have to put as much pressure on the ball carrier as possible


Key match-ups

Staker vs. Emblem: This will be a battle of brute strength, especially if Staker plays deep. If he goes high, look for McNeven to take him.

Carseldine vs. Derrick: Who can get their hands on it in the middle? That’ll be a big key.

Pershouse vs. Douglas: Both not the biggest, but both are reasonably agile. Pershouse has done the job on a couple of big names this year, but needs to be on it from the first minute.


The dream

Lions: Douglas kicks the first, and Jesse Derrick and Josh Woolley are off the chain in the first five minutes.

Magpies: Cal Carseldine gets the first clearance straight from the ruck and Pope kicks three in the first quarter.


The nightmare

Lions:  Can’t get in the corridor, forced to play down the line slowly, kicking to packs.

Magpies: Can’t find any transition out of the back half and struggle with that second or third kick out from the back 50.


The game breaker

Lions: Josh Woolley, his left foot cuts games open.

Magpies: Luke Scott, his ability to impact the game all over the ground is unparalleled in the QAFL


Team news:

Lions: Higgs is back, but they lose Chisholm and Steve Thynne

Magpies: Only big name missing from last week is Jordon Bourke. They look pretty settled for this time of year.

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Elimination Final
Mt Gravatt vs. Surfers Paradise
Sunday August 28, 2:00pm, Dittmer Park

The go to

Vultures: Going to try and feed this out wide, move it as quickly as possible and not let the Demons get back in numbers. They need to win the contested ball first and foremost, but look for them to play on quickly and use their wingman, who will bide time on the outside.

Demons: Transition running. It’s been their strength all year. If they are able to run in waves, move it quickly, and then isolate their key forwards, they will be hard to stop.


What they will try and stop

Vultures:  Can’t let the Demons get their defensive structures in place. If the Demons can set up, it’s going to be very hard to hit targets going forward.

Demons: Need to stop that handball out wide, and the bailout kick to the wing that Mt Gravatt use well.


Key match-ups

Mitch Hart vs. Dan Green: Without Chapman, Hart, and maybe even Tronc, have a big job ahead of them. Green has been the best forward in the comp this year. If they can keep him quiet it’s going to go a long way to winning.

Joe Murphy vs. Fraser Pope: Two players who are going to put their head over the ball all day, but then get on their bikes as soon as it clears. Both will look to impact the scoreboard.

Andrew Smith vs. Joel Stevenson: The ruck battle. Both are good tap ruckman, so it’s going to come down to who can have the biggest influence around the ground.


The dream

Vultures: Hamill to Carbone to Crawley, goal.

Demons: Cass Haberfield and Fraser Pope have 15 touches between them in the first quarter.


The nightmare

Vultures:  A slow, contested, stoppage fest.

Demons:  A game that pings from end to end.


The game breaker

Vultures: Mick Hamill. He has been the engine room this year, and can drag his team over the line single handedly

Demons: Has to be Dan Green. If he kicks a bag, I can’t see the Demons losing.


Team news:

Vultures: Still without Chapman and Moncur, which hurts their tall stocks at either end. Going to be a big day for Hart and Crawley.

Demons: Matt Green is done for the year with an ankle, but Filewood comes in after 14 goals last week in the reserves.

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By Andrew Wiles

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