QAFL Season Preview – Mt Gravatt

Chris ‘Yeendy’ Yeend

Mt Gravatt has a massive season in front of it as it looks to climb back up the QAFL ladder and challenge for finals. Dittmer Park has long been a nightmare for visiting clubs; but a wonderful venue for fans, home and away, to enjoy some quality football.

The team secured just four victories in 2022 but achieved something that only a handful of teams were able to complete; and that’s to bookend the season with wins.

After a tough run through the middle of the season, the Vultures finished their 2022 campaign quite strongly with victories over Sherwood, Morningside and Surfers Paradise to close out the season. The only blemish in the last month was a 10-goal loss to Redland Victoria Point at home, and that result was blown out in the final term after just 17-points separated the pair heading into the final stanza.

While the Vultures finished the 2022 season in 11th position, one quarter was the difference between securing four consecutive wins to close the season out; thus taking that into consideration, giving some good confidence heading into 2023.

Mt Gravatt will again be led by Tony Lynn. The 2002 Joe Grant Medal winner for best afield in the premiership win for Mt Gravatt played at the top level for the Brisbane Bears and Carlton. He previously played at Morningside in  the QAFL and at Central Districts in the SANFL where he also won the Fos Williams Medal for best on ground in the State of Origin clash against WA.

Lynn bleeds Queensland football and has been so vital to the development of not only young players making their mark in Senior football but also raising the standards of quality mature players. This group is in great hands.

Behind every admirable coach, there is some quality assistants and Lynn has many of them at his disposal with Troy Moncur, Tobi Spencer, Crumbs Hewitt, Gav Grose, Jesse Green and Geoff Clare on the sidelines.
The club has been aided by some outstanding recruitment from Gareth Dosser who has helped bring in some quality talent into the team that will play a major role in developing the group on and off the field.

”All of our recruits this year have contributed an enormous amount of hard work, selflessness and energy to our squad both on and off the ground,” Lynn says.

The biggest out for the Vultures is Luke O’Sullivan who divided his time between the club and the Brisbane Lions VFL team in 2022.

Lynn is impressed with the young players coming up through Colts that will press into the Senior squad and help shape the future of the club.

”Kaden Corboy, Kyah Moncur will get first crack and there are at least five more boys that could push their way into Senior football this year,” Lynn says.
The Vultures will be ignited by a number of players looking to be major X Factors in 2022. Dylan Smith will be a spark up forward. He kicked 16 goals in 2022 and if you’re only as good as your last game, he will be a handful in the season opener against Sherwood as he kicked four goals in the win over Surfers Paradise.

Daine Macdonald in the midfield and Jackson Griffiths in defense will be handy with the latter playing three games for Gold Coast in the VFL in 2022.
Lynn expectations to play finals and with an impressive off-season from the playing group, all players and staff share that goal and see it is as achievable.

Lynn looked at Aspley and Broadbeach as two key teams to watch this year.

”Both teams have a lot of talent and are well coached, and have proven themselves with Premierships over the last two years., and while it is early days, they are the benchmarks,” Lynn says.
As for players to watch from the opposition, a handy addition to Maroochydore will be one to look out for.
“ An old Queensland teammate of mine, Scotty Wagner, his son Josh has AFL experience and is from a great Queensland football family,” Lynn says.


Fixture rating based on 2022 final Home and Away standings
1, 3, 4, 5, 9, 11, 1, 8, 7, 3, 5, 6, 12, 10, 4, 7, 6, 8, = 110

The fate of the Vultures is in their hands as they head into the 2023 season looking to improve on its recent seasons.

They play the four teams that finished the 2022 home and away season, once and the 2022 finalists across eight games.
The first month of football presents matches against Sherwood, Surfers Paradise, Morningside and Wilston Grange; all winnable matches before fronting up against Labrador at home on May 6 in their first match against a 2022 finalist.

The Vultures finished season 2022 with four wins from its 18 games to sit at 11th place on the ladder but with the team that its building and a draw that on 2022 should enable them to be a lot more competitive, may open up some handy opportunities to climb back up the ladder.

The first month is absolutely crucial to how this team would set itself up for the run to the 2023 finals, and there is no reason this team can’t get to the post-season on the back of a dedicated and hard-working pre-season.

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