QAFL Preview – Round 11

By Chris ‘Yeendy’ Yeend

The race for the top six is alive and thriving; and the headline act of the weekend belongds to Wilston Grange and Aspley. Will we see some upsets across Round 11 of the QAFL that can dictate just where this season projects itself; and by the end of the round, we could have five teams on level points fighting for two spots in the top six.


Wilston Grange

Key ins – Lachlan Zaharakas, Gavin Thompson, Jess Budarick, Taylor McCubbin

Key outs – Tahj Abberley, Bailey Gordon, Willem Pfitzner, Joel Budarick

The Gorillas have added some strength to the team that comes in place of some solid contributors including Brisbane Lions VFL players Abberley and Gordon.



Key ins  Tom Watson, Tom Templeton

Key outs – Lachlan Rayner, Daniel Joseph

The Hornets welcome back the two Tom’s, Watson and Templeton after both missed last week against the Lions which will be two major inclusions injected into this contest.



It wasn’t that long ago that these two teams last met at Graham Road in a game where the Hornets kicked 10 goals to three in the second half to sink the Gorillas back on April 22. Since then; the Gorillas have won four of its past five games including victories over Broadbeach and Morningside in the last two weeks.

Aspley was nothing short of remarkable in its 63-point win over Palm Beach Currumbin at home with 10 of 14 goals coming from one end of the ground and its opponents kicking four of five goals to the same end in stunning effort.

The Hornets were strong inside 50 with 21 marks taken from 66 entries and Connor Stackleberg taking six of them in a five-goal effort. Jordan Hayden played his best game of the season with 41 disposals and Liam Dawson took 13 intercept marks.

With Wilston Grange doing the hunting this weekend; Aspley has shown that it has a very versatile midfield with a number of players capable of rotating in and out of the centre bounces; making it very difficult to shut down. The return of Tom Templton and Tom Watson adds more strength in the midfield and around the contests.

Grange recorded 53 inside 50s last week in the win over Morningside, and this game it must be prepared to go in less if it means being riskier and not bombing the ball deep so that Liam Dawson can create separation from his opponent and go up as the spare man into a marking contest. Grange must look to hit targets around the 40 to 55 metre mark and take longer shots on goals to negate Dawson’s influence, or simply tag him inside their attacking 50. Shallow entries and tagging Dawson will ensure greater efficiency.

This is the biggest test for the Gorillas to date and; like with what we’re seeing down the highway at Surfers Paradise; a changing of the guard inside the top six and we’re starting to see their potential.

Aspley will be challenged in this game; but it’s in some scary good form that makes it almost impossible to stop. Could we see a miracle at Hickey Park?




Key ins – Will Pendlebury, Sam Godfrey, Frasier Lay

Key outs – Wylie Buzza (VFL), Shaq McLeod, Ben McCarthy

The Panthers welcome back co-captain Will Pendlebury into the team alongside star midfielder Sam Godfrey and promising player Frasier Lay; while Wylie Buzza returns to the Brisbane Lions VFL team; and McLeod and McCarthy will be emergencies

Redland Victoria Point

Key ins -Reuben Williams, Will Johnson, Caleb Franks

Key outs – Jake Chapman; Justin Currie, Jake Harrison



The Sharks ended a two game losing stretch at home last week with a remarkable 80-point win over Labrador; while the Panthers fought hard in a tough loss to Wilston Grange.

It’s been a tough stretch for Morningside that has only tasted victory in 1 of its past five games after such a strong start to the season. It has been in every contest except in its loss to Surfers Paradise and needs to find that special ingredient to attack harder when it has the momentum and convert more from its chances.

The additions of Pendlebury, Godfrey and Lay will help add some balance around the backline and midfield for Morningside; and Keegan Downie will look to draw support from smaller forwards at ground level to assist with kicking a winning tally.

Redland Victoria Point made a statement last weekend on the scoreboard and have done so again at the selection table with the addition of Will Johnson and Caleb Franks into the midfield. Former Brisbane Lion Reuben Williams is a massive return to the team.

The Sharks had 31 scoring shots last week in the win over Labrador but it was the capacity to kick 23 goals from 59 inside 50s at a staggering efficiency of 39-percent; the best of any team this year in a single game.

Morningside will compete in the midfield with Brad Hodge in the ruck who is one of the top two leading ruckman in the competition. He’ll need to make sure that he finds the ball down to his current team mates a not former team mates Brock and Campbell Aston. If Morningside can press well with winning clearances and find more avenues up forward; it will compete; however, Labrador did beat Morningside a fortnight ago and that same team lost to the Sharks by 13-goals the next week; so it will need to produce something special.




Key Ins – Blake Erickson, Josh Searl, Jared Eckersley, Leonardo Lombard

Key Outs – Sam Banks-Smith, Shawn Watson, Alan O’Neill, Jasper Shoenmaker.

Leonardo Lombard plays his second Senior game for the season; fresh after representing the Allies Boys in the win over South Australia in the Under 18 National Championships last week. He has kicked four goals from five appearances for the Gold Coast Academy in the Coates Talent League including stand-out performances against the GWV Rebels, Eastern Ranges and Northern Knights.

Josh Searl comes back into the team for his sixth appearance; last suiting up against Labrador back in Round 7. Ruckman Shawn Watson (ankle) and backman Sam Banks-Smith (leg) will miss with injury.



Key ins – Hiovake Livesey, Tom Carey, Will Radcliffe, Deng Arok,  

Key outs – Dan Edwards, Elijah Glass (VFL), Bruce Reville (VFL), Connor Bulley

Hiovake Livesey returns after three games in the Seniors earlier in the year and proving himself with the past few weeks impressing in the Reserves. After an outstanding 2022 season where he made his Senior debut after a big year in the Colts; Will Radcliffe has fought his way back into the team after an impressive outing last week in the Reserves and a strong start in the opening part of the season in the Seniors.

Elijah Glass and Bruce Reville join re-join the Brisbane Lions VFL side after the bye but retain Owen Collins.



Blake Erickson celebrates his 100th Senior game for Broadbeach and the club is so thrilled to celebrate such a decorated player. Erickson has played in four Grand Finals for the club including the 2021 premiership; won both the Grogan Medal and Jim Stubbs Trophy in 2018; is named in the 2010-2019 Team of the Decade and also named in the Golden Jubilee Team for the best team at the club over 50 years. That is an exciting and highly credentialed resume for a player lining up for his 100th Senior game.

This is a massive game for both clubs and one that is a danger game for the reigning Grand Finalists on its home turf. It was in this fixture last season where the almighty and all-conquering Broadbeach team were pushed to its limits before just edging over the line against Sherwood. This time it’s still a danger game and while the Pies haven’t yet tasted victory in season 2023; their performances as of late, topped with a shrinking injury list has given a platform to build some stability to compete in games for longer.

On paper; we’re seeing a battle that is literally ‘Survival of the Fittest’ as both teams feature the two largest injury lists in the competition in relation to Senior players and given that there is high stakes on the line; to win its first game; or to maintain its place in the top six; it’s very significant.

Look forward to a stronger performance from Sherwood who went within two kicks of beating Surfers Paradise last week.




Key ins – Zac Stone

Key outs – Jy Bennett



Key ins – Josh Young, Campbell Lake (VFL), Nick Jackson, Alex Fyfe,

Key outs – Nathan Kady, Sam Mercer, Joel Edwards, Caleb Beck

After a solid start to the season, Joel Edwards comes out of the team for the Tigers but welcomes back Josh Young, Alex Fyfe and the talented Campbell Lake; a player that won a Rising Star nomination in the QAFL last year and returns after a stellar run for the Gold Coast Suns in the VFL, a team that has a bye this weekend.  



This is a massive game for both teams with finals hanging in the balance for both teams. Maroochydore let a golden opportunity slip against Broadbeach; a team that was severely undermanned and pulled off arguably its best win of the season in the process. With its place in the finals hanging in the balance; Broadbeach arrived with a level of aggression and intensity that kept Maroochydore at bay on its home turf.

Labrador went into the game against RVP with confidence and were simply outclassed by 80-points despite registering 45 inside 50s; an effort that would have competed against most teams.

Maroochydore went back to the selection table during the week and only made the one change on the selection table as it hopes to respond with confidence at home.

Labrador welcome back Josh Young, Campbell Lake and Alex Fyfe into the team; a trio that would make an immediate impact in any of the top teams in the competition. These additions show the depth that the team has; it just needs to get the results on the board.

This is the most important game of the year to date for Labrador where a win is so crucial to not only re-establishing some confidence; but also to keep tabs on the top six.

Maroochydore has quality in its list; results just haven’t shown it. It’s now or never for the Roos against the Southern Tigers who have the capacity to get a roll on with some big wins and roll straight into the finals.



Palm Beach Currumbin

Key ins – Frazer Neate, Christian Buykx-Smith, James Frawley, Corey Beaman, Jackson Graham, Haydn Keil, Thomas Thynne, Luke Cahill

Key outs – Tyler Cornish, Hunter Hall, Ti Cuffe, Harrison Day, Lewis McNally, Cam Vinall, Carden Skalij, Jack Stringer

PBC has made eight changes to the team that lost to Aspley last week. Captain Tommy Thynne returns alongside James Frawley which will be a boost. Additionally; leaping Corey Beaman is a massive in alongside former Labrador tall Christian Bukyx-Smith who makes his debut for the club and comes straight into the ones. Tyler Cornish and Harrison Day headline the exclusions.



Key ins – Ryan Crisp, Cian Mallon, Oscar McKinley

Key outs – Michael Bussey, Tyler Stack, Seb Rogers

The Northern Tigers welcome three key players into the team who come in for three big guns in the form of Stack, Rogers and Bussey.



This game is massive for both teams with Noosa mathematically still a chance to make finals and PBC sliding out of the top six on percentage; and a percentage that ranks as 10th in the competition.

The Lions welcome back some quality talent with eight changes at the selection table on Thursday night; all of them very capable of making a major impact. The high-flying Corey Beaman returns from injury; captain courageous Tommy Thynne returns; Spud Frawley always looms as a difference maker; while former Labrador tall Christian Buykx-Smith makes his debut for the club as a key ruckman and forward, just what the team needs.

On the other side of the table; Noosa has three big outs with forward Michael Bussey and gun midfielders Tyler Stack and Seb Rogers coming out of the team; that hurts.

PBC desperately need to rebound here and it faces a team that has potential; but shows it on a less consistent basis. This won’t be an easy contest for either team but one that the Lions must win at all costs and perhaps try and get some percentage in the process. If finals appear to be slipping away for the Northern Tigers; this is the game where it can cause some trouble and cast some serious doubts in the mind of its opposition.



Surfers Paradise

Key ins – Brody Haberfield, Joel Foster, Michael Luxton, Oscar Wood

Key outs – Matt Doran, Nick Harrison, Byron Finch, Ray Leonard

Brody Haberfield is a big addition to the team while Oscar Wood comes in for his second game; and is one of few players that have played Colts, Reserves and Seniors this year; alongside Michael Luxton now who makes his Senior debut after some solid efforts in the Colts and Reserves. Luxton played 13 games and kicked 16 goals in the Senior team for Grafton in the North Coast competition last year, and had played Under 17s and Senior football for a number of years prior.


Mt Gravatt

Key ins – Matt Hollier,

Key outs – Brandon Stewart

The Vultures welcome Matt Hollier in for his first Senior game. After an impressive debut in the Reserves against Noosa last week; he has earned the call-up into the team at the expense of former Wynnum star Brandon Stewart.



This is a massive game for both teams with the Demons looking to create some separation between them and teams knocking on the door of the top six. A victory could provide one game and percentage ahead of the team that is in sixth place at the end oft he round.

Mt Gravatt will see this as a massive opportunity to keep in touch with the teams above it with just one win and percentage separating it from its fifth-placed Surfers Paradise opponents.

Both teams recorded solid wins last week with the Vultures making a big statement in beating a competitive team across four quarters and building on some crucial percentage.

Surfers Paradise held on against a hungry Sherwood outfit by two goals and there is no reason why we couldn’t see a similar margin between both teams this week.

The loss of Byron Finch up forward hurts but the addition of Brody Haberfield into the back line is a massive upside; plus the chance to inject some youth into the team.

Out of all the games this weekend; based purely on ladder positions; this is the game to watch because it will have such a massive impact on what happens to the top six.

If Mt Gravatt; Noosa (over PBC); Labrador (over Maroochydore) and RVP (over Morningside) all win; we will have five teams (5-9) on the same points fighting for two spots in the top six at the end of this round; as a neutral fan, that would be spectacular.



1 – ASPLEY (34 – 219.81%)

2 – RVP (28 – 146.71%)

3 – WILSTON GRANGE (24 – 121.47%)

4 – BROADBEACH (22 – 107.831%)

5 – SURFERS PARADISE (20 – 110.75%)

6 – MORNINGSIDE (20 – 99.21%)

7 – Palm Beach Currumbin (20 – 82.60%)

8 – Mt Gravatt (16 – 90.49%)

9 – Labrador (16 – 90.08%)

10 – Maroochydore (8 – 83.21%)

11 – Noosa (8 – 72.73%)

12 – Sherwood (0 – 57.70%)

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