Central out to break lengthy losing streak
Saturday, 4th July, 2015
By Patrick Reincke
Today at Memorial Oval, Central will attempt to break a four-game losing streak when they take on North.
But the Magpies will have to do it without first ruckman Jon Carratt and James Bressanelli.
Samuel Beaven will join Wade Eatts to take the rucking duties for today’s game but North’s Ayden Pettitt will likely be the favourite in that battle.
The inclusion of James McClure on the wing is very handy for Central and he will join the likes of Justin Heath, Liam King and Lyndon McInnes in the midfield.
They will have get past Jayden Kelly, Jedd Watson, Eddie Morgan and Ben Thompson who have all been in quality form in recent weeks.
In their three previous encounters, North has won by an average of 79 points.
But if Central is able to get on the board early and control the early parts of the quarters, they may have what it takes to get a win.
Last week against South, the Magpies’ lack of match fitness saw them concede a few late goals at the end of the quarters. Not to mention the avalanche of goals in last.
It’s important that they make the most of their early possession and convert their opportunities to goals.
If North is able to keep Central at bay during those times, they should have the match conditioning to outrun the Magpies in the later stages.
Digby Schinckel proved to be industrious up forward last week when he kicked two majors and could team up with Keta Balchin to get some goals flowing for the black and white.
In North’s one-sided win over West last week, Anthony Henderson sent six kicks through the big sticks and will have to be stopped this afternoon.
In the two times he has played against Central, Henderson has scored a total of seven goals and has been quite the target up forward.
Brett Johnson, Codie Howard and Ashley Richards will remain viable targets in forward 50 and the Central defence will certainly have their work cut out for them.
The absence of the injured Jake Hodgins will be felt along the forward flank although the addition of Connor Martin may see the void be filled.
In short, North will be favourites to take home the cherries for this game.
The Bulldogs are hot on South’s hammer in the race for top spot and will not want to drop back today.
But they must be wary of the Magpies on their home turf.
North to win but Central to keep in touch.