SPRINGWOOD are set to field perhaps their youngest first-grade side in history when they tackle Wilston-Grange.

By Terry Wilson

Coach Paul Opbroek estimated the average age of the 22 chosen to play seniors this weekend is 19.5 years – proof of the intense rebuilding program going on at Lowe Oval.
What is more, the Pumas have shown significant improvement in recent times, stretching the Western Magpies all the way before an honourable loss to Surfers Paradise on the road last weekend.
Yet Opbroek refuses to concede the club ha been buoyed by results of late.
“No, not really, the big picture is all about next year and beyond that, not just this year,” he said.
The Pumas have lost some quality in Andrew Sponnek (suspended), forward Aaron Richardson and ruckman Tiger Monk.
Into the side are Nathan McCoy for his seniors debut, Zac Minan, Damien Hewitt and Alex Quirk.
Wilston-Grange have second spot on the ladder beckoning, with Western Magpies having this weekend’s bye,
“That’s all down the track,” responded Grange coach David Martin.
“We’ve just got to keep paying good, consistent footy. Getting to second or top? That’s miles away.
“You start getting too far ahead of yourself and things don’t happen.
“We went all right against Sandgate coming off the bye.
“We played probably half a game of good footy, but we have to stretch that out for four quarters.”
The Gorillas have lost defender Pat McMahon and wingman Tim Hoult, replaced by defender Hugh Campbell and on-baller Rohan Cash, who has returned after a stint with Mt Gravatt.
Martin has noted Springwood’s recent surge in improvement and is wary.
“This is a bit of danger game,” he said of Springwood. “The Maggies struggled to shake them and Surfers struggled to shake them.
“And the game against the Maggies was at Lowe Oval. It’s a difficult ground to play.”

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