With a few cracking games lined up in Round 12, we could see the first change to the make-up of the top five in nearly two months.
St Pauls V Chelsea Heights (McKinnon Reserve)
A real danger game for Chelsea Heights as a loss could see them fall out of the top five for the first time since Round Six. Although the Heighters have been playing some impressive footy in the last few weeks, St Pauls are too good a side to drop this one at home.
East Malvern V Heatherton (Dunlop Reserve)
This is a massive opportunity for the Panthers. If Chelsea Heights get beaten, then East Malvern can steal fifth spot with a win here. Moreover, a thumping win over the struggling Tunners will help boost their percentage, which will come in handy come the last couple of rounds. On recent form, you would expect East Malvern to get the job done easily.
Cheltenham V East Brighton (Jack Barker Oval)
This will be a great contest between two finals-bound sides. Although the Vampires haven’t been at their peak in recent weeks, they are still one of the best teams in the competition. This one should go down to the wire, but I’ll tip Cheltenham in a bit of an upset.
Bentleigh V Clayton (Bentleigh Reserve)
There’s plenty at stake here for these two clubs. A win for the Demons keeps its finals hopes alive, while a loss for Clayton will just about draw the curtain on its 2014 campaign. The Clays took the spoils in their last encounter back in Round Three, but have recorded just one win since. On that basis I’m backing Bentleigh to claim the all-important four points.
St Kilda City V Dingley (Peanut Farm)
Certainly this is a year to forget for the Saints and as they come up against the might of the all-conquering Dingoes, this could get ugly for them.
DIVISION 2 -ROUND 12 Preview
with Jason Barbin
The season continues on into round 12 and as the finals edge closer, 7 teams still fight for the final 3 spots in the top 5
Mordialloc vs Hampton (Ben Kavanagh Reserve)
Hampton were quite impressive in their win against Highett while Mordialloc really had to fight it out against Caulfield. Hampton has some good form going into this game and with a spot in the top 5 on the line, they could prove to be more than competitive against a Mordialloc side who have locked up a top 2 spot. Possible upset
Mordialloc by 24 points
Caulfield vs Moorabbin (Koornang Park Reserve)
This is a potential danger game for Caulfield. Moorabbin showed against Doveton that when they put four quarters together, they can be a really good team. Caulfield will need to bring their best if they are going to win this game. With finals spots on the line, expect them to do so.
Caulfield by 15 points
Murrumbeena vs Skye (Murrumbeena Park)
With their season on the line and their scoring struggles becoming increasingly problematic this is the worst time to play the best defensive side in the Division. But that’s what faces Murrumbeena as they fight it out at home against Skye in what is essentially the first of many finals type games for them as the season progresses.
Skye by 30 points
Doveton vs Oakleigh District (Power Reserve)
Doveton will be looking to bounce back after a disappointing loss to Moorabbin in round 11 but they run into another team in good form in Oakleigh, who have proved more than a match for Doveton in their previous encounter. Season defining game for both clubs, as they look to book a finals spot in 2014.
Oakleigh by 26 points
Springvale Districts vs Highett (Springvale Reserve)
Two more teams fighting for a finals spot finish off round 12. In their previous encounter, a 12 goal second half provided Highett with one of the better comeback wins this season. Springvale won’t have forgotten that game and will be looking to extract their revenge at home and maintain their 3rd spot on the ladder.
Springvale by 17 points
DIVISION 3-ROUND 13 Preview
with Andrew Paloczi
Round 13 kicks off with a Friday night match as Hallam hosts Dandenong. Those spectators who brave the cold should be rewarded with a tantalising contest. When these teams met earlier in the season the Redlegs prevailed by four points. It should be close again, but it is hard to predict a winner. Perhaps it might be the first draw of the season.
Black Rock is at home this week and will need to be at its best against Mount Waverley. Last time these teams met the Mountain Lions scraped home by one goal. They deserve to be favourites again, but the Jets are capable of winning and it shapes as an exciting day.
Sandown hosts Endeavour Hills and should be too strong for the Falcons, but it will be interesting to see whether the Cobras can regain confidence after a disappointing loss.
Carrum Patterson Lakes is home at Roy Dore Reserve this week and South Yarra will have to be at its best to provide a challenge. It will be a real surprise if CPL loses two games in a row.
Ashwood is the home team in a clash with Lyndale. This promises to be a close game. Last time these sides met, the Pumas got home by three points. Both sides will go into the contest with confidence after each has recently defeated one of the top two teams. The home ground advantage may tip the game in the Magpies’ favour.