South to start strong
Saturday, 9th April, 2016
By Patrick Reincke
This afternoon’s second game of the A-Grade double-header at the Jube has last year’s grand finalists squaring off.
The Lightning Cup winners South will take on the Bulldogs at 3:30pm in a game the Roos will be favoured to win.
The red and white looked strong in last Saturday’s pre-season cup competition, winning all three of their games.
North were the only ones to test them in the final match, a breeze in the second half seeing them hit back and only fall short by two points.
Form off the Lightning Cup can’t really dictate a prediction here though; the team sheet today tells the tale.
The reigning premiers look very strong all over the park with their midfield always their most damaging feature.
Having missed the Lightning Cup with a hamstring twinge, gun centre man Michael Westley will be itching to get his hands on the Sherrin while his compatriots in Jordan Johns and Marc Purcell look to continue their good form from a week ago.
New inclusion Harry Cudmore along with Eddie Morgan, Quinton Beavan and Codie Howard make up North’s on-ball contingent and they will certainly have their work cut out for them today.
If South win the clearance out of the centre, they will have a host of attacking targets to choose from.
Cody Schorn, Mitchell Henderson and Arlen Bird are the big three but Todd Davidson, Dylan Stuart and young Sam Edgecumbe loom large as well.
The Bulldogs’ defence will be led by Matt Garrick, Tom Ragenovich and Jake Borlace. If they can find a way to corral their opponents and slow up scoring, they may be in with a chance.
North has a competent attacking line up who are more than capable of kicking goals.
Ethan Slater, Josh Jones and Anthony Henderson are fierce when given an opening and Nash Mitchell and Shane Dalby remain optional targets to break up the play.
South will see young debutante Angus Collins play his first A-Grade game for the Roos in the back pocket after showing great promise in the Lightning Cup.
Casey Paull, Riley Schorn and Marcus O’Brien are the usual suspects down back for the red and white are very bankable defenders week in, week out.
While both sides sport great offensive line ups, the game will be determined from the middle.
South’s Dylan Browne and Jordan Holmes are a stalwart duo in the ruck contests and will go up against young Tyler Hicks and Ayden Pettitt.
Browne and Holmes will be tough to beat and that should lead to South getting plenty of clearances.
North are sporting a top flight side today and it will be a great one to watch.
However, hot off another Cup win, the Roos will likely be too good and should get their season off to a solid start and give new coach Billy Dolan his first win at the helm.
South by 43 points.