Photo: Anthony Byron Photography

By Chris ‘Yeendy’ Yeend

ASPLEY and Palm Beach Currumbin go head-to-head for the second consecutive Reserves Preliminary final in neutral territory at Redland Victoria Point.



Key ins – Connor Goeldner, Alexander Barnes, William O’Dwyer

Key outs – James Nelis, Rhiley Owens, Alex Gould

The Hornets will be without Nelis, Owens and Alex Gould but the return of Will O’Dwyer is a major asset. O’Dwyer kicked one goal in the Seniors’ win over the Sharks last week and five from 14 games this year. He has been named in the best across three of his five games in the Reserves.

Former junior Goeldner has played 22 games in two seasons across the QAFL Reserves competition and last played against Labrador. Alex Barnes missed last week but comes in on the back of 15 goals from his 15 appearances in this team.


Key ins – None

Key outs – None

The Lions opted to not make any changes to its team that defeated Morningside in the elimination Semi Final last week. Ben Davis, Jed Aitken, Brayden Pearson and Jess Little have all been named as emergencies.

Those that played in the 22 and 23 Preliminary Finals

ASPLEY – 13/22

PALM BEACH CURRUMBIN – 7/22 (Will Bella and Jed Walter played in this team).


Meetings this year

Round 3 – PBC

ASPLEY 16.10.106 defeated PBC 13.9.87

The Hornets led the contest by four-points at the first break in an eight-goal quarter. They kicked five goals to three in the second term to lead by 17-points at the main break. PBC dug deep in the third term to kick five goals to one and force a 25-point turn-around to lead by eight-points heading into the final term.

The Hornets kicked 6.1 to 1.4 in the final quarter to win by 19-points. Alex Barnes and Rhiley Owens kicked three goals each for the winners while Jordan Rogers kicked four goals for the Lions.

Round 10 – Aspley

ASPLEY 14.7.91 defeated PBC 8.5.53

The Hornets kicked five goals in the first term to lead by 16-points at the first change, consolidating its lead to 24-points at half-time. PBC fought back in the third term but could only reduce the margin to 18-points. The Hornets kicked five goals to two in the final term to seal a 38-point win.

Tom Watson kicked four goals in a best-on-ground performance for the winners while Mitch Beaufoy and Dean Katsiris kicked two goals each for the Lions.


Finals run so far

ASPLEY – after finishing the season in second place on the ladder, due to the Senior team finishing as minor premiers, it got a home final against Broadbeach.

After a tight first term, the Cats kicked six goals to two in the second term and four goals to one in the final term (10 goals to three at one end of the ground) to seal a 32-point win.

PALM BEACH CURRUMBIN – the reigning Grand Finalists have had two tough challenges to make it to the Preliminary Final. It beat Mt Gravatt by 29-points and Morningside by six-points; both games at Subaru Oval. The second quarter against the Panthers last week was vital as it kicked four goals to one to take a 16-point lead into half-time and it was enough to create a buffer for the remainder of the contest.



This is a re-match of the 2022 Preliminary Final where Palm Beach Currumbin stormed from the clouds in the final term to take down Aspley at home by five-points.

The Lions had the assistance of potential number 2 pick in the 2023 draft, Jed Walters who flexed his muscles in the final term to kick three match-winning goals.

The Lions would go on to suffer a Grand Final defeat at the hands of Labrador the following week.

The pair across the 2023 season have produced some impressive performances. Aspley finished two points ahead of PBC to finish in second place on the ladder on the back of eventual sixth-placed finishing Mt Gravatt forcing a 73-each draw against the Lions in Round 9.

Aspley has one of the most polished top 50 playing lists in the competition and the fact that it can bring in a player of the calibre of Will O’Dwyer into the team, this deep into finals and play alongside countless others that have played with him in the Senior team is a testament to the depth of this club.

The Preliminary Final last year must still hurt, but revenge was extracted in both meetings between the pair with Aspley saluting really well on both occasions.

The win from PBC last week was one of pure grit and determination against a formidable opponent and it comes as no surprise that it takes the same 22 from last week into the game this week.

Aspley has Will O’Dwyer that will be a key X-Factor in this team and the emergence of Mason O’Sullivan who has enjoyed a career-best season playing a key role in the back and forward halves of the ground will also be a major factor.

Bronson Howard and Cam Poharama will be challenging for Aspley to shut down and both of them will play a big part on proceedings.

Who wins this one? Palm Beach Currumbin edge out Aspley in yet another thriller just on the basis of recent form in finals; particularly last week against Morningside that will prepare this team to perfection to win when the game is tight with two minutes remaining.

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