By Ken Moore
LADDER-LEADER Cora Lynn aims to open up a two-game buffer over the second-placed Warragul Industrials, one of its major threats this season, in this week’s match of the day. The game will be a real humdinger as both sides are in top form and will enter the game after super impressive victories last weekend.
Cora Lynn still has distinct memories of last year’s clash in round 13 against the Industrials – and for all the wrong reason because they were upset by 28 points and were very unhappy campers after the loss. The Cobras were itching for revenge but the way the season panned out they never met again.
A preliminary final clash between the two looked likely however the Dusties were rolled by Catani in the first semi-final, which brought a disappointing end to their season. The history books now show the Cobras played in the grand final only to lose to Nilma Darnum.
The Cobras learned from last season’s match that Dusties spearhead Mick Santo, who kicked eight goals, can be a very difficult opponent to match up on and the home side will need to do some seriously thinking into this week’s match-ups.
The Industrials will also have to put some deep thought into the Cobras new three-pronged attack of Runnalls, Robinson and Singh. The Cobras superior forward potency should help preserve their undefeated status in a game likely to be in the balance until deep into the final quarter.
@BT Sub Sport Gaz:KOOWEERUP v BUNYIP
THE seventh-placed Demons are eyeing a spot in the top six and can ill-afford to lose to the Bulldogs, a side decimated by injury at the moment.
Spectators can expect a tight affair because both have struggled to kick goals this season. Aside from Ben Miller and Rhys Morgan no other forward appears capable enough to take a game by the scuff of neck for the home side, while Bunyip’s forward woes stem from the loss of Ryan Brown over summer and Danny Casset, who walked out of the club a month ago.
To compound their problems their other key forward Glen Browney is sidelined along with on-ballers Josh Taylor and Callum Pattie and reliable defender Marc Jolley, hence they have been exposed for depth in recent weeks.
Kooweerup showed plenty of endeavour to pip Nilma last week and with a big edge in experience should chalk up their fourth win.
@BT Sub Sport Gaz:LANG LANG v NILMA DARNUM
THE Tigers will go in slight favourites against the Bombers. Lang Lang has three wins on the board but has been far from convincing.
Nilma newcomers Jack Tatterson, Darren Arezzolo, James Hammill and Josh O’Brien are all handy additions but the Bombers are not a patch on last season’s model.
Tiger coach Clint Evans returned for his first game of the season last week and pulled up well, and his on-field leadership in tandem with the experience of Kurt Batt, Adam Baxter, Rhys Nisbet and star ruckman Ben Dwyer should guide the Tigers home by a narrow margin.
@BT Sub Sport Gaz:POOWONG v NAR NAR GOON
POOWONG better gird itself for a big challenge when it is visited by the Goon.
Nar Nar Goon has done little wrong this season and its all-over field evenness appears to be as good as any other team over the first six weeks.
On exposed form the Magpies appear to be more a team of workers rather than stars.
Two of their genuine stars tall forward Trevor Hooker and rugged midfielder Matt Grant are both under an injury cloud and must be doubtful which is a huge blow.
The Magpies’ intensity has waned after half time all season which must be disconcerting for coach Brent Clinnick.
Freshened after last week’s bye, and with the likelihood that Tom Hallinan, Matt Slattery and Luke Dore may all return, the visitors should win with a bit in reserve.
@BT Sub Sport Gaz:CATANI v NYORA
THE Blues put in an absolute shocker last week and will be keen to rebound with a big win over the Saints.
Nyora had a handsome win over Poowong last week and with the return of mercurial utility Brad Miles their chances cannot be dismissed.
An intriguing sideshow will be performance of both Paul Youle, who crossed to Nyora over summer, and Fiatupu Too Too, who returned to the Saints. Both played at Catani last year.
The Blues are missing star goal kicker Luke James, who will be sidelined for at least another six weeks with two foot fractures but will almost certainly promote coach Paul Alger, rugged defender Gavin Huxley and youngster Luke Failla, who all missed last week.
Without much confidence I’ll tip the Blues to fall over the line.
@BT Sub Sport Gaz:NEERIM NEERIM SOUTH v LONGWARRY
ASIDE from an ordinary first half against Garfield last week there is a lot to like about the Cats this season, but looking for positives for the Crows takes a bit more consideration.
Longwarry will likely get utility Jason Voumard back this week but they have badly missed key forward Luke Serong, who is still a number of weeks away.
Longwarry is unlikely to apply the pressure which brought Neerim undone last week. The Cats should win easily.
@BT Sub Sport Gaz:BULN BULN v GARFIELD
THE Lyrebirds, the most dominant EDFL side in the late 1990s and early 2000s, will meet the Stars, who were one of the powerhouses of the WGFL around the same time.
While both clubs have had an ordinary five years, their pride and respect for each other should ensure both clubs are up for this match.
Stars coach Brent Eastwell, a former Lyrebird, will return to the ground of many of his triumphs and should depart a contented man with a victory for the Stars.