Springvale Districts V Keysborough (Springvale Reserve)
ROUND 5 PREVIEW
By Will Hunter
Division 1 action resumes this week after last Saturday’s Interleague-enforced hiatus, with several huge games lined up.
For the second week in a row, Mordialloc finds itself engaged in a top of the table battle, this time against the resurgent St Pauls.
The Dogs have been one of the big surprise packets of 2017, with several of its young guns helping lead its climb up the ladder. In the process, St Pauls have claimed some impressive scalps, but in Mordialloc, they will face their toughest assignment to date.
The bigger and more experienced bodies of this powerful Bloods on-ball group have proved near impossible to stop thus far, and should again win first use from the stoppages. This advantage will see Mordi record its fifth straight win.
Mordialloc by 15 points.
With just three wins between them from a combined eight matches, the first meeting of 2016 grand final combatants perhaps lacks some of the hype it had pre-season. Nevertheless, we can expect fired-up performances from two teams keen to return to the winners’ list.
Several of Dingley’s big guns were among the stars in the SFNL’s Interleague victory last Saturday, including Dan Farmer, Josh Ferguson and BOG Lucas Walmsley. If those blokes can replicate those performances, the Dingoes should start as hot favourites.
Granted, they have been crippled by injury, but Bentleigh are a better team than what they have produced so far this year. And if they are to cause an upset here, they simply cannot afford a sluggish start like the one they produced against Port Colts.
Hard to go past the reigning premiers here.
Dingley by 26 points.
With both teams sitting 2-2 and setting their sights on finals action, this match looms as a classic eight-pointer.
City were off the boil the previous week and paid a heavy price. If they are to push the powerful Panthers on the road, they will need to be 100% switched on from the opening bounce.
Key to this game will be in the air with Saints ruckman Troy Kelm, one of the standout players this season, set to do battle with twin towers Simon Taylor and Matt Terech, depending on how he has pulled up from rep duties last week. If the Panthers duo can give their quality onballers first use, they will be hard to stop.
East Malvern by 18 points.
There is heightened interest in this match following the brilliant victories recorded by these teams a fortnight ago.
Oakleigh have emerged as one of the competition’s in-form teams, dropping just one game to the second-placed St Pauls back in Round 2. The Colts, meanwhile, are undefeated at home but winless on the road, and the challenge for them this week is to apply the same effort and intensity on the larger deck.
This is certainly a winnable game for the visitors, but form says the Oaks will be too strong.
Oakleigh District by 10 points.
After promising so much during the preseason, the Rosellas will be desperate to improve upon their 1-3 record. They will get no better opportunity to do that than against the winless Clays.
It is arguable that no side has had a tougher draw than Clayton, who have played each of the top four sides to open the season. However, given they have been comprehensively thrashed in each of their outings, it is impossible to tip them.
Cheltenham by 32 points.
ROUND 6 PREVIEW
By Jason Barbin
The interleague break has come and gone and Division 2 action returns to the Southern Football Netball League. Round 6 brings forth several interesting match-ups, so let’s get into it.
The upstart Vampires are back in business after three straight wins and will go into the game fairly confident of causing an upset.
East Brighton are always tough to handle on its home deck and with a little confidence behind it, the task is challenging for the ladder leaders.
Chelsea Heights has been in good form itself however, able to grind out wins when need be, making it deserved favourites for this match-up.
Chelsea Heights by 18 points.
This is a must win game for the Bears early in the season, having lost their last two encounters and may be devoid of some confidence.
Heatherton are in much the same boat, having shown some good early season form, but has been unable to maintain it.
Of the two, Caulfield is in better form, but the lure of rising off the bottom of the ladder is a good motivator for the Tonners.
Caulfield by 22 points.
The Mountain Lions have been in excellent form the last two weeks, winning two straight, and win number three might not be too far away.
The Dogs have yet to string together four consistent quarters and show their best form and need to get a move on to establish a foothold in the finals race.
Mount Waverley should go into the match as favourites and a win here will help their finals contender status grow.
Mount Waverley by 11 points.
After a two-week break due to interleague and the bye, the Hammers will be champing at the bit to get out on the park against the Beena.
Murrumbeena will also go into the match confident after scoring its first win of the season prior to interleague.
Hampton has shown to be an improved unit in 2017 and its form at the Toolbox is one of those reasons why.
Hampton by 17 points.
Springvale Districts is another one of those sides that has displayed some good early season form, but has yet to reap the rewards.
Keysborough is enjoying a resurgence so far in 2017, after a disappointing 2016, and is a legitimate finals contender.
The Burra have been good at home and on the road so far and that form should continue on Saturday.
Keysborough by 29 points.
ROUND 5 PREVIEW
By Andrew Paloczi
Lyndale flew out of the blocks with a couple of big wins to start the season.
The Pumas have faced tougher opposition in their past two games and haven’t delivered.
Dandenong is yet to register a win and has copped some heavy defeats.
However, the Redlegs showed strong resolve in Round 4 and forced Endeavour Hills to work hard for its win.
Lyndale starts as favourite, but the Redlegs have a shot at causing an upset.
Endeavour Hills has won all but one of its games, and sits fifth on the ladder.
It hosts a Black Rock team in desperate need of a win, and already a couple of games out of the five.
Endeavour Hills should prove too strong.
An upset at the hands of Moorabbin sent South Yarra tumbling from second to fourth on the table.
This week the Lions are back on their turf, but face a substantial test against unbeaten Ashwood.
The Magpies’ smallest winning margin this season is 73 points.
A huge win over the hapless Sandown has inflated Ashwood’s percentage to over 500.
South Yarra may be able to take advantage of the lack of competition the Magpies have faced so far.
The Lions apply fierce tackling pressure on the tight confines of Fritsch Holzer Park and will test the Magpies.
Ashwood must start as favourite, but expect an enthralling clash.
Sandown could not face a much sterner test than a visit to Hallam.
Sadly there is little hope of the Cobras being competitive.
This will be a percentage booster for the Hawks.
Lyndhurst and Moorabbin have two wins apiece and will provide an entertaining spectacle at Marriott Waters Reserve.
Both enjoyed narrow wins in Round 4 and will enter this week’s match full of confidence.
Expect this contest to be tight throughout the day, with Lightning to claim the points.
Doveton has won its last three games emphatically and will continue this streak by beating CPL.
The Lions have shown glimpses of competiveness this season, but don’t yet have the class to match the top sides.