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Roos to rout Robins

Saturday, 13th July, 2013

West’s Jordan Tonkin will need to hit the scoeboard if West are to triumph over South today.PICTURE: Gavin Schmidt West’s Jordan Tonkin will need to hit the scoeboard if West are to triumph over South today.PICTURE: Gavin Schmidt

By By Darrin Manuel

The depth of West’s playing stocks will go under the microscope today when they face South at the Alma Oval.

Brent Rose, Cohen Pettitt and Ben McInerney head a list of key players unavailable for today’s game, leaving coach Dale Tonkin to rely on the club’s second tier players.

At their best West have proven they have the talent to match the city’s top teams, but stumbled badly in last week’s encounter with an equally undermanned North.

After taking an early lead against the league leaders, West capitulated and added just three goals after quarter time as the Bulldogs romped to an easy 56-point victory.

Tonkin will demand a big lift in intensity from his players today regardless of missing personnel.

“We don’t care who is in, or who is out; we’ll just be looking to be competitive,” he said.

“We have to approach every contest on its merits and continue to work on our defensive game.”

South will also be looking for improvement today after they put in a somewhat underwhelming performance against the embattled Magpies last week.

The Roos struggled to shake off a determined Central unit until well into the final quarter in a game marred by poor conversion and skill errors.

South coach Peter Johns conceded his team’s skills must improve, and said he expects a far more cohesive performance against West.

“Central stifled us a bit. We had our fair share of the ball but we just didn’t use it very well,” he said yesterday.

“We didn’t hit targets, we chose some poor options, and we’ll definitely be looking for some improvement there this week.

“Just better ball usage and better consistency; hopefully we can put together four good quarters because we tend to drop off a little bit.”

The last time West and South clashed the Roos scored a 25-point comeback win in the wet at Jubilee Oval.

It was another game in which West jumped out to an early lead  - as much as 33 points in the first quarter - only to take their foot off the pedal and watch their opponents run away with the game.

The Roos were led by Cody Schorn with seven goals in a best on ground performance, and the Robins will have to work hard to lock down the brilliant forward if they are to have any hope of winning.

The combination of Johns, Purcell, Davidson and O’Brien should give South the upper hand in the middle, while their forwardline has a good mixture of skill, class and experience with Schorn, Stephens, Browne and Boland all lining up.

West should enjoy an advantage in the ruck with Nelson being able to outbody Holmes and hopefully provide their runners with first use of the ball.

Up forward Nathan Nickett will have the difficult task of outpointing the in-form Casey Paull, and he will need significant help from King, Dalby and Tonkin if West are to kick a winning score.

Both teams will be keen to improve their standing after last week’s efforts, but South should have enough class to get over the line in comfortable fashion.

Prediction: South by 27 points.

Alma Oval 2.30pm
Head to head - South 3, West 0
Last start - South 18.7 (115) d West 14.6 (90)
Form guide - South: LWWW West: WLWL

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