Round 9 QAFL Preview and Teams

By Terry Wilson

Photo: BC Sleep Photography

At Jack Esplen Oval, 2pm
This match will live streamed on

Ins: Will Wolbers, Eddie Mallan, Isaiah Edwards, Alastair Nash, Matt Logan, Ben McNiece.
Outs: Nathan Kinch (calf), Billy Lambert (omit), Brock Aston (omit), Josh Threapleton (omit), Brad Hodge (omit), Will Pendlebury (omit).

Mt Gravatt:
Ins: Adam Boon, Brad Howard, Jarrod Huddy, Andrew Smith, Harry Taylor, Brendan Telford.
Outs: Ashley Chapman (inj), Jack Coghlan (Aspley NEAFL), Ben Daly (omit), Nathan Morgan (omit), Nick Sheppard (omit), Isaac Wiencke (omit).

MT Gravatt have a share of the QAFL ladder leadership at stake when they take on Morningside at Jack Esplen Oval.

If the Vultures can beat their arch Brisbane rivals they will join Palm Beach Currumbin on seven wins with half the season left.

But that is all ahead of the Vultures, says coach Daniel Webster, and the focus is just on this weekend’s fixture at a venue the Mt Gravatt boss can be a graveyard for visiting teams.

“I know we lost a final there last year and in my history I know Morningside at Morningside is a bloody hard game,” Webster said.

Both sides will benefit from the addition of NEAFL-listed players.

Morningside have named big ruckman Will Wolbers, elusive half-forward Eddie Mallan and Isaiah Edwards, all from Aspley, while Mt Gravatt have Adam Boon, Brad Howard, Jarrod Huddy and Brendan Telford all available from Redland.

Morningside also get back inspirational midfielder Alastair Nash and co-captain Matt Logan to cover the loss of fellow co-captain Nathan Kinch, who will miss with a calf injury.

Nash is a major return, said Morningside coach Steve Wildschut.

“Alastair is a three times premiership player and has played more than 170 games for the club, so he is a key player for us,” Wildschut said.

Away from the NEAFL influx, Mt Gravatt get an important player in ruckman Andrew Smith back from injury.

While a share of the ladder lead is on Mt Gravatt’s wish list, Morningside simply have to keep winning to get back up the ladder from their current position of sixth, two wins out of the top five.

Asked if this could be a season-defining match for the Panthers, Wildschut said: “They all are. This is no different to the past four weeks and it’ll be no different over the next four weeks.

“All the teams are close apart from at the top.”

Morningside will be wearing specially designed guernseys as part of the annual Pink Panther celebrations, with a ladies lunch hosted in the clubrooms prior to the Senior match.

Rd9 - Panthers v Vultures (002)

At McCarthy Homes Oval, 2pm

Western Magpies:
Ins: Ryan Harwood, Will Fletcher, Billy Johnson, Sean Mewing, Aaron Maricic, Liam Dwyer. Key forward back from injury.
Outs: Gareth Crawford, Brodie Easton, Tom Ilasi, Caleb Franks, Jock Goodall, Doug Lawrence.
Ins: Brad Carter, Jaicob Kenny, Michael Peters.
Outs: Tom Thorsen (family commitments), Tyson Stockwell (split hand), Lachlan Smith (moved back to Cairns).

THE Western Magpies are clearly one of the form teams in the QAFL competition after three successive wins pushed them into the top five.

But coach Brydan Morgan insists there is still plenty of work to do to make sure the Magpies firstly assure themselves of a place in the finals and secondly grab a double chance.

Step one of that process starts at McCarthy Homes Oval when 2015/16 premiers and 2017 runners-up Labrador come to town for what is shaping as a huge match for both clubs.

“We need to keep winning to get to the finals,” Morgan said.

“Number one is we want to make the finals. We don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves because the competition is still so even.

“So it’s too early to focus on the finals yet, we just have to worry about ourselves and to keep on improving.

“For us it’s all about improving our game.”

A bonus for the Magpies is the return of Ryan Harwood to patrol the middle of the ground as one of an unexpected five changes to the side that last went around against Wilston Grange before a bye.

Down at Cooke-Murphy Oval the mood was as though the Tigers had won Lotto after coming up with only three changes.

This comes on the back of nine changes, then 10, in their previous two matches.

“We’re going on with a stability rebuild,” joked coach Aaron Shattock of matters at the selection table.

Labrador regain Jaicob Kenny and full-back Brad Carter but lose some on-ball grunt with Tom Thorsen unavailable and Tyson Stockwell nursing a badly cut hand.

“Do we lose some grunt in the midfield? We’ll have to wait and see, won’t we,” Shattock said.

“Wests are a good, honest side. And they never get blown away, they’re always in games.

“So on their home deck, if we can win this weekend it’s game back on for us.”

Rd9 - Magpies v Tigers

At Sir Bruce Small Park, 2pm

Surfers Paradise:
Ins: Harrison Fraser, Myles Jewell, Matt Doran, Dan Green, Matt Green.
Outs: Jake Tooma (suspended), Brodie Grant (unavailable), Haydn Kiel (knee), Josh Matulis (shoulder), Flynn Loft (omit).
Wilston Grange:
Ins: Jack James, Brad Terrell, Mitch Heaslip.
Outs: Luca Mason (ankle), Declan Warren (hip), Jordan McDonald (omit).

SURFERS Paradise have had no hesitation in rushing big Dan Green back into their side to play Wilston Grange at Sir Bruce Small Park.

The bustling, powerhouse forward , who was the 2015 Ray Hughson Medal winner as QAFL leading goalkicker, has played just the one reserves game since being given the medical all-clear of a liver complaint that had threatened to end his playing career.

Joining him back at the Dees is younger brother Matt, a tall forward who has been playing with Balranald in the Central Murray Football League.

The addition of the brothers Green gives Surfers a new dimension in attack, an area which has concerned coach Brad Moore for a number of weeks.

“We’ve been struggling to kick big enough scores in the close games we’ve lost,” Moore said.

“We’ve been thereabouts but haven’t been able to put scores on the board.

“Having Dan and Matt back gives us a new perspective in attack. From our perspective Dan makes our young blokes walk a bit taller with his experience, his voice and his physical presence.

“He’s a fantastic asset to us.”

The Demons regain midfielder Harrison Fraser and Southport-listed Matt Doran among their five changes, but lose Jake Tooma to suspension and Haydn Kiel (Southport) to knee soreness.

Things are getting better on the injury front at the Grange with the Gorillas having only three changes for their second successive trip down the M1.

And they will do so with a focus on amending for a terrible second-half fade-out last weekend against Broadbeach.

So concerned with the effort, the Grange players decided to have an extra training session on Monday night when they sat down and did a thorough post-match analysis of what went wrong against the Cats.

“It was probably one of our better first halves but then it was one of our worst third quarters,” coach Nathan Clarke said.

“They basically called the extra training session in themselves, to have our video session on Monday rather than Tuesday.”

Surfers go into the clash in fifth spot on standings on 12 points, but with Morningside (8) and Labrador (8) breathing down their necks.

Rd9 - Demons v Gorillas

At Lemke Road Oval, 2pm

Ins: Josh Preval, Toara Marango, Mitch Crawley, Jarrod Bond.
Outs: Vanyn Angeles (shoulder), Trent Lowrie (omit), Jack Mitchell (omit), Shane Rogerson (omit).
Ins: Jack O’Shea, Harrison Kerr, Adam Johnson.
Outs: Nick Burton (groin), Riley Dreghorn (omit), Scott Ayres (omit).

IT will be with a heavy heart that Brad Andrews completes his coaching duties with Broadbeach this weekend.

Andrews has elected to be with his Cats when they travel to Lemke Road Oval to take on Sandgate in what is shaping as a danger game for the Gold Coast side.

Andrews’s father Ray passed away on Wednesday night after a long illness.

Now he is off to a venue where the Cats have struggled in the past, a ground where the Hawks shocked them by drawing a game last year.

“Their ground should suit us because we’re a hard-running side but it has not been a good place for us and I don’t know why.”

“Sandgate are a young side and if you give them a start they’re hard to catch so we have to go up there with an attitude to win, and to win well.”

Sandgate coach Jarad Marsh feels his Hawks match up well with the Cats on the wide, open spaces of Lemke Road Oval and his confidence has been boosted by the returns from NEAFL duties of Josh Preval and Toara Marango, who are two of four changes to the side.

“We have a couple of younger players back which should help us structurally,” Marsh said.

“Last weekend the Hawks fell down badly against Labrador but they do look a lot stronger side, on paper, for this weekend.

“There is a belief in the group that what we’re trying to implement is working. But it’s a slow process and won’t happen overnight.”

Broadbeach have only three changes from the side that beat Wilston Grange last round.

Goalkicking flanker Nick Burton is out with a groin injury and will be a significant loss, but the Cats have handy youngster Jack O’Shea and forward Harrison Kerr back from the NEAFL and they elevated Adam Johnson for his first seniors game for the club.

Rd9 - Hawks v Cats_

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