Ladder leaders Coolangatta and Zillmere meet at Peak Oval, Zillmere take on Griffith-Moorooka and Coorparoo meet Yeronga in this week’s QWAFL matches.
MATCH OF THE ROUND
COOLANGATTA vs. ZILLMERE
Saturday May 16, 4:45pm Peak Oval
Coolangatta take on Zillmere this Saturday at Peak Oval in what is sure to be a thrilling top of the table clash.
The Bluebirds are the only undefeated team in the competition this season and have looked seriously good after big wins against Coorparoo and Yeronga.
The competition won’t get any easier when they face off against a highly skilled Eagles outfit this weekend, but Coolangatta coach, Aaron Russell, insists his girls are ready for the challenge.
“Overall the girls are pumped,” Russell said.
“We look at it as another challenge and obviously Zillmere were a grand finalist team last year and they play an elite run and carry game, so it will be interesting to see how we match up.”
Zillmere and Coolangatta have played a very similar brand of football this season, focusing on leg speed, fitness and an elite running game to break down their opponents.
Although Russell admits the two clubs share similarities in their play style, he believes the game will be won and lost in a different area.
“I think both teams have an elite fitness base and running game and we will find out Saturday who wins that battle, but I think whoever put emphasis on winning the contests will get the four points.
“Our priority starts in the engine room and we will focus on winning clearances – I think the running game will sort itself out.”
Zillmere will go into this game as slight underdogs away from home, but Eagles coach, Jacob Simmons-Bliss is relishing the trip for his girls and is expecting a big performance.
“Playing away is definitely not a factor, we really enjoy the day at the Gold Coast,” Simmons-Bliss said.
“The travel for us is a good chance to unify the team, we have a lunch as a team and spend all afternoon together, so we look forward to these road trips.
“I’m expecting a highly skilled and physical game, they (Coolangatta) have a lot of really good players, some teams might back away from them but we are planning on playing a contested game.
“We want to take away the four points and if we can put together a four quarter effort with accelerated running, we will have a good day.”
WILSTON GRANGE vs. GRIFFITH MOOROOKA
Saturday May 16, 4:45pm PBI Oval
After nearly three weeks on the sidelines, Wilston Grange will return this Saturday in a clash with Griffith Moorooka at PBI Oval.
The Gorilla’s have been shelved for the last two rounds due to bad weather and a scheduled bye and Wilston Grange coach, Ron Kemp, admits the girls might find the going tough.
“It’s always a hard one when you haven’t played on near three weeks,” Kemp said.
“I’ve been happy with how they have trained so if they can blow some cobwebs out and knuckle down and play some good footy we will be ok.”
Although the Gorillas have spent a few weeks away from the QWAFL, Kemp still has high expectations of his playing group.
“My expectation is we need to take a win and we need to win well,” Kemp said.
“The other sides have got some good results and it could be a critical factor during the year – I want a win first but I still wan’t a good percentage.
“We know that Moorooka are developing and things might start to click for them and if we are not careful it could come back to bite us.”
Griffith Moorooka have been battling this year in the QWAFL, however, Reds coach, Glenn Hogetts, is remaining positive and is focusing on continual improvement from his playing group.
“We just need to take the positives out of this season so far,” Hogetts said.
“We have had a couple of losses but there are positives to take out of it, we just want to keep working and training and keep in the right frame of mind.”
Although the Gorillas will head into this one heavy favourites, Hogetts believes the Reds are a genuine crack if the chips fall their way.
“I think we match up pretty well against them (Wilston Grange), we are going to try and get our match ups right and see if we can get a win on the board.”
COORPAROO vs. YERONGA
Saturday May 16, 2:30pm Giffin Park
A thumping win for the defending premiers put the competition on notice last weekend, but don’t expect a blowout when the Navy Roos clash with Yeronga on Saturday.
Both clubs have showed flashes of brilliance in 2015; Coorparoo’s dominance in the midfield is a red flag for any opposition and Yeronga have proved they can hang with best, competing ferociously against Coolangatta last weekend.
This one could easily go down to the wire and Yeronga coach, Scott Stephens, is adamant that the little things will make all the difference this weekend.
“Obviously they (Coorparoo) have got a lot of quality players and are a capable team, so I think for us it comes down to applying pressure and making sure the rep players don’t have their way,” Stephens said.
“This week we need to focus on the structures so we can match them (Coorparoo) in the midfield and we need to watch out for their outside players and matching them for effort.
“It’s about getting on top in the key positions around the ground this weekend, our midfield has a big job this weekend and I think that is where the game is going to be won or lost.”
Coorparoo well and truly hit their straps last week with a big win and Navy Roos coach, Bernie Cantrell, is confident his group will continue to go from strength to strength.
“The training is starting to pick up after last week and we are continuing to work hard on our game,” Cantrell said.
“The new girls are incorporating well into our group and the main focus is still basically around skills and adhering to the game plan.
“We understand we are in a little bit of a rebuild but our main aim is to see the girls enjoying their footy and seeing them turn into long time Coorparoo players.”
Although Cantrell is remaining focused on the development of his playing group, he still has every intention to take the four points on Saturday.
“We want to win every game, and I think we are in the right space to do that,” Cantrell said.
“I think if we focus on our man to man footy and quick ball movement and go in with the right attitude we are a good chance.”
BYE – UQ
By Grant Hitzman – @granthitzman