Round 16 QAFL Preview and Teams

By Terry Wilson

Photo: RF Photography

Mt Gravatt v Morningside
At Dittmer Park, 2pm

Mt Gravatt:
Brendan Telford, Chris Murphy, Jesse Green. Outs: Daniel Morgan (omit), Patrick Neate (omit), Dominic Nash (knee).

James Johnson, Ben McNiece, Alastair Nash. Outs: Nathan Kinch (calf), Eddie Mallan (unavailable), Sam Godfrey (hand).

Last time they met: Morningside 21.17 (143) d Mt Gravatt 5.11 (41), R9 at Jack Esplen Oval.

THERE is not just the spectre of an embarrassing hiding they copped the last time they played Morningside hanging over the heads of Mt Gravatt this weekend.

There is the memory of one of the Vultures’ most popular former players, the late Fergus Reid, to be celebrated when the cross-city rivals clash at Dittmer Park.

In what is sure to be a highly emotional day for Mt Gravatt, Reid’s contribution to the club will be remembered for the eighth time following his death as a 21-year-old in 2010 from cancer.

Reid was the son of former club president David.

Morningside coach Steve Wildschut put things nicely in perspective when he described Saturday as “a special occasion”.

“This is not a normal home and away game for that footy club, it goes way above that,” Wildschut said of the Reid memorial afternoon.

“There is a lot of emotion attached to this Brisbane derby.”

“That is fair comment,” Mt Gravatt coach Daniel Webster said.

“It’s a big day for the club in general. The players look forward to it, it’s a big day on the calendar for the club and the community.”

Of the clash itself, between sides placed third and fourth on standings, Webster described it as “huge, massive” and one everyone has been looking forward to.

And that round nine thrashing – by a massive 102 points at Jack Esplen Oval the last time the sides met – is something that must be remedied according to the Vulture faithful.

The final score that day was 21.17 (143) to 5.11 (41).

The Vultures were only three points down at half-time but that was it as the Panthers took over and booted 15.13 to 2.2 in a dominant second half performance.

Has that spanking remained fresh in the Mt Gravatt camp?

Not really, insists Webster. It may have been discussed briefly by players, but the club certainly has not dwelled heavily on the result.

“I think some players may have spoken about it, but the main thing is that we learnt from it,” Webster said.

“Besides, we have nine different players in the team this time around.”

Both Morningside and Mt Gravatt have made three changes.

The Panthers have lost key trio Eddie Mallan (unavailable) and injured duo Nathan Kinch and Sam Godfrey.

Of Mt Gravatt’s three changes, Dominic Nash (knee) was the only forced one as they brought in Brendan Telford, Chris Murphy and Jesse Green.

James Johnson is on debut for Morningside and arrives in senior grade with a huge football pedigree.

As a Panther junior, he is the son of former Siders player Tony Johnson and his grandfather Butch Johnson played for Melbourne in the VFL years ago.

Also in the family tree, as cousins, are former AFL duo Tony Lynn and Michael and Brett Voss.

Both the Vosses and Lynn were stars at Morningside before heading on to the national stage.

Rd16 - Vultures v Panthers

Labrador v Western Magpies
At Cooke-Murphy Oval, 2pm

Ins: Lachlan McDonald, Tui Lowah, Jake Goldsmith, Michael Lakeman, Kane Haua, Ryan Gilmore. Outs: Ben Walker (work), Zac Browne (omit), Joel Stevenson, Max Johnston, Jarrod Mills, Alex Ford (omit).

Western Magpies:
Ins: Jack Austin, Brenton Saunders, Sam Parker, Lachlan Dennis, Billy Johnson. Outs: Jakob de Winter, Sam Copland, Liam Dwyer, Jack Goodall (Redlands NEAFL), John Macanawai.

Last time they met: Western Magpies 12.12 (84) d Labrador 10.8 (68), R9 at McCarthy Homes Oval.

LABRADOR are on the hunt for a new coach following the announcement by Aaron Shattock that he will step down from the role at season’s end.

A former Brisbane and Port Adelaide AFL player, Shattock told the Tigers that he was finding it difficult to combine being the father of three young children and running his own construction company on the Gold Coast.

“The truth is I can’t give the job what it needs and deserves, so something had to give,” Shattock said of his decision.

“The club is still in a good position, I reckon, but they probably need someone with new vigour and a new voice.”

Labrador will advertise for a new coach in the next week, but it is believed the club has already sounded out a number of locals regarding the job, as well as a former premiership-winning Coast coach.

So Shattock has only four games left to salvage some success out of what has been a disappointing season for Labrador, starting on Saturday when the Tigers host Western Magpies at Cooke-Murphy Oval.

No doubt the 2010 grand final side team defender would love to see the Tigers build on their record of only three wins this year and play a major role in shaping the top five for the finals.

Over the four remaining rounds, Labrador play three of the top-five contenders in the Magpies, Morningside and Broadbeach.

Make no bones about it, this game coming up is a danger one for the Magpies, who are sixth on the ladder, four points behind fifth-placed Surfers Paradise, in the five-way battle for four finals berths.

Against the Magpies this weekend is the fact they are without three key forwards in the suspended Anthony Corrie, injured Jake de Winter and Redland-tied Sam Copland.

To fill one of these attacking roles the Magpies have brought in Jack Austin, the QAFL Round One Rising Star Award nominee.

“He’ll play forward,” coach Brydan Morgan confirmed.

“Yes, we have three key forwards out, but this gives the opportunity to their replacements – and we still look pretty potent. Even with the outs our 22 is solid on paper.”

Morgan agreed this is a clutch match for the Magpies, but he remains upbeat over the team’s chances to go deep into September.

“All matches are important but if we can win the remining four we can finish third,” he said.

A big “in” for Labrador is equally big forward/ruckman Jake Goldsmith, whose last game was back in May before he broke down with groin issues.

The Tigers also looked to the future by naming a number of youngsters among six changes to the side.

They are Tui Lowah, Kane Haua, Ryan Gilmore and Lachlan McDonald, who has been impressing good judges with his speed playing with the Suns NEAFL and Allies sides.


Rd16 - Tigers v Magpies_

Wilston Grange v Surfers Paradise
At Bendigo Bank Oval, 2pm

Wilston Grange:
Nate Dennis, Tom Smart. Outs: Alex Chapman (ribs), Mitch Heaslip (unavailable).
Surfers Paradise:
Connor Manning, Kain Ford, Jake Tooma. Outs: Matt Doran (Southport NEAFL) , Tom Howard (Southport NEAFL), Sam Jewell (hamstring).

Last time they met: Surfers Paradise 17.17 (119) d Wilston Grange 14.8 (92), R9 at Sir Bruce Small Park.

IT seems to be a week for coaches to confirm they will not be in their current roles for the 2019 QAFL season.

At a time when Aaron Shattock announced his retirement from coaching at season’s end, so too has Nathan Clarke confirmed he is doing similar after Wilston Grange finish their season.

Clarke yesterday said he is set to take over as football manager at the Grange as the club continues to build its professional and playing image.

“The reality was that I was never going to be a long-term coach for the Grange,” Clarke said.

“I have a young family, plus I live on the Sunshine Coast as well and it just gets too hard.

“But I will still be at the club looking after the football department.”

What is left for Clarke and the Gorillas to do over the remaining four rounds is to get a victory or two to build on their two-win season, starting on Saturday against Surfers Paradise at Bendigo Bank Oval.

Surfers are finals hopefuls, sitting fourth on the ladder but with Western Magpies breathing down their neck.

If the Demons lose to the Gorillas, and the Magpies can beat Labrador away, the fifth spot will belong to the Magpies on percentage.

And things look even tougher for the Demons, who are still without big Dan Green and who lose on-baller Matt Doran and key position pair Tom Howard and Sam Jewell.

Ironically, all three losses have been forced on Surfers by NEAFL club Southport, who called up Doran and Howard this weekend.

Jewell was training at the Sharks on Tuesday night when he twinged a hamstring.

Green’s seven goals on return was the highlight of the day the last time the sides clashed at Sir Bruce Small Park after being given the medical green light following a mystery liver complaint.

But some lower back and hamstring tightness have forced the Demons to elect not to take any risks with their key man.

“Wilston Grange at Wilston Grange is always a tough game,” Surfers coach Brad Moore said.

“We come up against a team with nothing to lose and one that can be free-wheeling.

“We’ve been in pretty good form but we need to make sure we keep maintaining that. We’ve had a week off with the bye and been able to freshen up.”

Clarke said his players were buoyed by their last-up effort against Western Magpies.

“So we were going to go in confident anyway,” he said.

Rd16 - Gorillas v Demons

Broadbeach v Sandgate
At Subaru Oval, 2pm

Luke McGuane, Jai Lyons, Darcy Dienjes, Alex Rayner, Connor Harris, Jayden Brennan. Outs: Matt Smith (shoulder), Dale Eames (ill), Robert Blood (chest), Seb Rogers (omit), Rhys Finn (omit), Nick Burton (cork).

Trent Ricker. Outs: N/A.

Last time they met: Broadbeach 26.24 (180) d Sandgate 5.2 (32), R9 at Lemke Road Oval.

BROADBEACH want a home qualifying final and to do that they cannot afford to slip up when they host Sandgate at Subaru Oval on Saturday.

The Cats are nicely placed heading in the run home to the play-offs, sitting second on standing s, ahead of Mt Gravatt on percentage, with four rounds to go.

Both the Cats and the Vultures are on 36 points, the Cats ahead with a percentage of 141.70 compared to 108.78 with matches to come against Wilston Grange (away), the bye, then Labrador (home).

So, it looks to be a favourable draw as far as grabbing the home ground advantage for being second and hosting the qualifying final is concerned.

“We want at least one home final because the bonus for finishing second is that if you lose the qualifying final you still get the preliminary final at home,” coach Brett Andrews said.

“But we need to get back into business with that second spot up for grabs.”

Andrews said team rules and fundamentals were back last weekend when the Cats led premiers Palm Beach Currumbin at three-quarter time of their Coast derby at Salk Oval in an encouraging pre-games clash.

“It was a finals type atmosphere, so we have to use that as a stepping stone,” Andrews said.

But he is wary of Sandgate, even though the Cats registered one of their biggest wins in years the last time the sides met at Lemke Road Oval in the ninth round.

That was perhaps the darkest day in a tough 2018 campaign for the Hawks, who lost by 180-32 and kicked just 1.2 to Broadbeach’s 16.10 after half-time.

Cat sharpshooter Matt Fowler booted nine that day, a haul which has helped him to lead the race for the Ray Hughson Medal with 40 majors for the season.

He is two ahead of Magpies forward Jakob de Winter (38), Jack Anthony (PBC) on 33, Jarryd Douglas (PBC) on 31 and Jordan Bain (Mt Gravatt) on 31.

The Cats have elected to bring in three new faces against the Hawks. They named club junior products Alex Rayner and Connor Harris alongside former Victorian Jayden Brennan who has overcome foot problems.

Sandgate’s only confirmed change is the inclusion of Trent Ricker.


Rd16 - Cats v Hawks

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