Match of the round
Morningside vs. Western Magpies
Saturday June 27, 2:00pm – Jack Esplen Oval
Live blog from 1:30pm
Second against third. One loss against two. A mix of youth and experience. One absolute ball-tearer.
The Magpies really took it to Morningside in round one. A performance like that was the catalyst of their strong form this season, but coach Glenn Humphrey doesn’t take too much from it.
“I think they will be a different side and we will be a different side. We can be buoyant about the fact we got close to them earlier on in the year but the simple fact is it’s another game of football,” Humphrey said.
The Magpies have won six in a row, which is no mean feat, but to make it seven, they will have to be right on top of their game.
“We are looking forward to the challenge. Make no mistake about it, they are still the yard stick of the competition, so we are going to have to get ourselves up and start playing our best footy,” he said.
“We have been playing some reasonable footy ourselves but we have had some slow starts and some patches where we have dropped off during games, if we do that against Morningside we will pay the price for it.”
Humphrey thinks the key will be getting the game on their terms, at the tempo they want.
“Controlling the ball around the stoppages and using the ball well once you have it will be key. Defensively we are going to need to be really strong if we are a chance of winning the game,” Humphrey said.
They have four big additions to the team sheet. Both co-captains in Woods and Carseldine are back from injury, Pope will resume at full forward and Aneet will be seen taking the game on through the middle.
For Morningside, the half way mark represents the opportunity to re-evaluate and prime themselves for an assault on the business end of the year.
“We have got through the first part, we were competing against expectation early, it was about when we lost a game and you were just trying to manage the group. A lot of these blokes were part of last years success so it was about managing them to the half way point,” coach David Lake said.
“Now it’s time to really knuckle down and prepare for the second half. We have got enough wins to know we will be around the money again, so we need to set ourselves up for the second half of the season.”
He isn’t looking any further than this week though, understanding the Panthers are coming up against a team in red-hot form.
“They are extremely honest and extremely accountable, so we need to match them on the inside and then beat them on the outside,” he said.
There is one player in particular he will be keeping an eye on.
“Luke Scott, I consider to be one of the better players in the competition. He was outstanding in the state side. He is honest, and they didn’t have him last time so that’s a massive inclusion,” Lake said.
For the Magpies, this is the game we have waited weeks for, to find out where they are really at.
Come Saturday afternoon, we will know if 2015 becomes a three horse race.
FOOTY RECORD: QAFL RECORD – RD 10 – MORNINGSIDE VS WESTERN MAGPIES
Mt Gravatt vs. UQ
Saturday June 27, 2:00pm – Dittmer Park
Both clubs would be licking their lips heading into tomorrow. It’s a perfect opportunity to bank their second win of the year.
There is no denying both teams have struggled in patches during the year, but at times, when it’s clicked, they have proven they are more than capable of playing good footy.
After a strong showing for three quarters last week against Labrador, the mood around Dittmer Park has picked up.
“The boys have certainly perked up a bit, and are starting to play some reasonable footy which is always a confidence builder,” coach Brad Pollock said.
“If we keep playing to that standard then there is some games to win in the next few weeks, but if we don’t, we can quite easily lose to teams.”
Although their only win of 2015 came against the Red Lions in round 1, Pollock belives nine weeks in footy changes a lot of things.
“It was too long ago. It was a good win for us but a lot of water has gone under the bridge since then.” he said.
He wants to turn UQ into a pressure cooker on Saturday.
“I think what we want to do is play a good type game, and put a lot of pressure onto UQ so they make mistakes. We have done that against quality sides of and it has certally worked for us so if we can keep that intensity up, we expect a lot more mistakes out of UQ,” Pollock said.
“Once we get the pill it’s a matter of getting some good run and carry and seeing what damage we can do.
They strengthen their spine this week. Andrew Scott is in town for the weekend, Mitch Hart comes back at full-back, and Tim Douge returns at centre half-forward.
As for UQ, despite an up and down season so far, the boys are still working hard to improve, and have a better back end of the year.
“We are still going along strong and we have just consolidated this week in terms of sticking to our structures, and making sure we take those into the second half of the year even though we have just had the one win,” coach Darren Pfeiffer said.
Unlike Pollock, Pfeiffer believes they got an insight in round 1 into what they need to stop tomorrow.
“What we take from that game is that they moved the ball really well from defense. Since that day, we have been able to stop teams moving as well from defense, but we are still weary of that,” he said.
He believes they have to take away from the Vultures the belief that they can win right from the outset.
“They are going to be really keen to get a win on the board, just like we are. Both teams will go into the game thinking they are a chance, and that’s all it takes from teams who haven’t won many games, you give them a sniff and they bring out some strong solid footy,” Pfeiffer said,
Willams Powyer Milford and Begley are all experienced inclusions for this week, which will definitely help their cause.
Both teams are a real chance tomorrow, it’s a 50/50 game. What it’s going to come down too is who wants it more.
FOOTY RECORD: QAFL RECORD – RD 10 – MT GRAVATT VS UNI OF QLD
Sandgate vs. Labrador
Saturday June 27, 2:00pm – Lemke Road
When these two teams met in round 1, and there was just a goal in it at three wuarter time, most people were surprised.
Labrador coach Steve Daniel wasn’t, and he wont be taking this game lightly either.
“Round 1 and round two that’s what your always going to get, there is no pressure everyone is up. They were pretty impressive to be honest,” Daniel said
“On their big ground, they have got some good young kids, we are expecting them to be really quick again and have a real go.”
At their regular Thursday opposition meeting, the Tigers highleted a few names that needed to be stopped, but there was one that stood out.
“We know what we are looking at and who we are going to be targeting. We are certainly going to be putting a bit of work into Overington and a couple of others,” he said.
At 9-0 at the half way mark, it’s fair to say things are travelling along nicely for the Tigers. However, over the past few weeks, injuries have started to take their toll on the list.
“We are no different to any other club, you get to the half way mark and you are kind of looking towards the end already,” Daniel said.
“WE have been hit pretty severely with injury, but I suppose everyone else has as well, so we are pretty happy and content with where we are sitting at the moment.”
This week they will miss a few certified a-graders.
Billy Hicks has an ankle issue, Tom Daniels has a nasty hamstring injury, Lappin looks like missing a month with a knee complaint, Perry-Bolt is unwell, and Josh Fraser is unavailable this week,
Sandgate’s round 1 performace showed the QAFL world they arent pushovers, and their season has rolled on from their.
“We played well against them last time. The game in round one really set the tone for our season,” coach Graham Adams said.
“It is a big task, but you want to test yourselves against the best.”
They will be a few good men down as well, but Adams is confident that the development program at the club allows these kids to come in a play a part.
“We are missing a few, but we have brought up players from lower grades who get their shot, and we are confident that they will play their role.”
The Hawks won’t look to shut anyone in particular down, rather play to their strengths and go from there.
“They have got a lot of good players, they are strong all over the ground, so it’s important we play the type of footy we want to play.”
Sandgate has proven they match up well against the Tigers. Playing at home, against an opposition missing a few, this could be the upset of the year.
FOOTY RECORD: QAFL RECORD – RD 10 – SANDGATE VS LABRADOR
Surfers Paradise vs. Wilston Grange
Saturday June 27, 2:00pm – Sir Bruce Small Oval
If you look at the win loss ratio, some would think that this game will be pretty comfortable for the Gorillas. Scrap that idea; this one will go down to the wire.
Surfers Paradise was a slow starter in 2015, but their last month has showed some real promise.
They took it right up to Morningside last week, which shouldn’t be sneezed at. They are becoming very difficult to beat.
“We feel we matched them last time and it was the last kick they got over the line with. I’m sure that they have improved since round 1, we know we have improved, so it should be a good game,” coach Peter Young said.
They will be without inside grunt player Cassidy Haberfield and Trent McIntyre up forward, but the Demons have been able to replace players better than anyone this year.
“We feel that we have turned over a lot, we know players will just step up and play,” he said.
It’s a big day all round for Surfers, so they will be keen to put on a show. They have their 25th premiership reunion, five games across the day, and Regan Finlay will play his 100th senior game.
“Regan hasn’t played a lot of footy over the last few years because of injury but he is an absolute leader at our footy club. Hopefully the boys can have a ripper game for him,” Young said.
Surfers will be more focused on their own backyard come Saturday, but it would be remiss not to put some opposition work in.
“We really concentrate on our own footy, how we want to play, how we spread, how we control the footy and use the footy. If we can control it the opposition haven’t got it. At some stage we have got to put some real scoreboard pressure on them,” he said.
“Declan Bevan is their class. We have got to put strategies in place to try and hold him, and Proud is there now, so we will put some time into him as well.
Wilston Grange was very impressive away from home against Palm Beach last week. But Matt Trewhella knows that means nothing come tomorrow.
“They were a bogey side for us for a long time. Outside of a final a few years ago, they normally they give us a fair touch up down there. I still think they are really strong down at home so I think it’s a really tough game,” Trewhella said.
When they last lined up against each other, Wilston Grange got up in a thriller. Trewhella is hoping that they have a little bit more breathing space this time.
“We let them into the game last time. We let them spread and we let them run, so our training has been solely to stop their that and not to let them run past us,” he said.
“We have spent a lot of time with our backs and mids getting into a defensive position once we have the ball.”
Superstar mid-fielder Eric Kuret is back from his overseas adventure, and ready to rock and roll tomorrow.
“It will just be good to have him running around. I thought being away for five or six weeks he would come back a little underdone, but not at all.”
Sooner or later, Surfers Paradise are going to have to take a few scalps above them if they want to play finals footy, and as they say, there is no better time than the present.
FOOTY RECORD: QAFL RECORD – RD 10 – SURFERS PARADISE VS WILSTON GRANGE
Broadbeach vs. Palm Beach Currumbin
Sunday, June 28, 2:00pm – H&A Oval
Half way through the year, and we have ourselves a mini-final already.
This is a must win for both teams if they want to lock down on that fifth spot in the five, but two doesn’t go into one.
After a disappointing result against Wilston Grange last week, Palm Beach coach Chad Owens understands how big tomorrow now becomes, but they are confident.
“It’s massive, it’s a huge game. We win last week and it puts us level with Wilston Grange and it would have put us two games clear of sixth,” Owens said.
“We have seen very team in the comp now and there is no one that really scares us to be honest.”
Both team’s game plans have evolved over the course of 2015, but in complete opposite directions
“They have changed their game style, they used to flick the ball around a lot but it looks like now they are playing a more contested style of footy. We are trying to go the other way, we know we can play a contested style of footy, we want to get more run in our game,” he said.
“It will be interesting to see how it goes, especially when they have got Dienjes, Pantic and Hayley running around.
Palm Beach have lost Tom Thyyne and Brad Sheer, the inclusions of Emblem, Callinan and Shone will change their forward line focus.
“We are going to go with a faster half forward line, and have a decent ruckman in Shone to take the forward ruck contests because we think we can create goals out of that,” Owens said.
“We think we have match winner that they are going to have to match up on as well We are pretty happy with where we are at and we are confident going in to it that we are going to win a game of footy,” he said.
The first half of the year hasn’t been one to write home about for Broadbeach, but a good last three weeks has left them well and truly in the hunt.
For the next nine weeks, games like these become massive.
““We have just got to be up for the challenge. Palm Beach has had the wood on us since we have both been in the same comp. It’s an eight point game, it’s for fifth spot, it’s at home, it doesn’t get any better,” Coach Brett Andrews said.
“We have got to win the 50/50’s, but for us they are all eight point games from now on. Because we have got ourselves in the situation where we have got to win everyone of these games or else it’s goodnight.”
One things for sure though, the Cats are ready for tomorrow.
It’s getting competitive for spots, which is good. Training has been good, attitude has been good, we are up and about, but we can’t get too ahead of ourselves.”
The team that get’s over the line, rightfully so, can be very confident of giving the second half of the year a real shake. For the team who loses, their task gets a lot harder.
Don’t expect anything to be left on the field by Sunday afternoon.
FOOTY RECORD: QAFL RECORD – RD 10 – BROADBEACH VS PBC
By Andrew Wiles – @andrewjwiles