Round Five: Men's Football Preview


There are blockbusters aplenty in Round Five of the Southern Football Netball League's Division 1 competition, with some ladder shaping games.

The Port Melbourne Colts and St Paul's McKinnon are both 2-2 and their clash shapes as crucial in the eventual finals make up.

The Colts are coming off a confidence boosting win over Bentleigh where they also gained some valuable percentage.

St Paul's McKinnon have been a little up and down but were extremely competitive against Cheltenham last week in a narrow defeat.

The winner of this clash can stay in touch with the top four whilst the loser will have a little bit of work to do, albeit still early in the year.

The match of the round is probably the third vs fourth clash with St.Kilda City hosting Mordialloc.

Both of these sides are coming off victories with St.Kilda City's win a good bounce back from a tough loss over the Anzac Day weekend.

DeGois and Irving continue to hit the scoreboard and with a stack of changes across recent weeks, they are the constants that can hold the key to their success.

Mordialloc have a game in hand on both sides above them so a win here will put them right amongst the big boys, and on paper they are a very good chance.

Meanwhile, Dingley find themselves at an important juncture in their season ahead of a clash with the league leaders.

2-2 with a percentage of 109.71 is hardly time for concern, but coming off a strong campaign last year they'd be keen to get some momentum so as not to lose touch with the top couple of sides.

A loss here would see them already with more defeats than they suffered last season.

The Cranbourne Eagles have set the pace in the early rounds but coach Steve O'Brien feels they can still find a few gears.

"We were playing our brand early but fell back into some habits we need to rectify. We feel we can keep getting better." O'Brien said.

We also have eighth (Springvale Districts) playing ninth (Bentleigh) with the winner able to stay in touch with the middle of the table, and the loser in some early trouble.

Both sides have been competitive against good opposition, and in the case of Springvale Districts, actually defeated good opposition, but the hunt is on for consistency.

Springvale Districts have looked slightly more solid defensively and might enter as favourites.

The final match up will see the in form Cheltenham play host to the bottom placed East Malvern.

Cheltenham have probably had the competition's busiest schedule so far, and need to guard against dropping games they are expected to win.

If they can tick that box this weekend and improve their record to 4-2, they can confirm their standing as one of the team's to beat.



The second Division of the SFNL will see the undefeated Doveton Doves have the bye which opens the chance for the chasing pack to make up some ground.

The Caulfield Bears return from a bye of their own ahead of a home clash with Chelsea Heights.

The visitors are three from three coming into the clash at Koornang Park.

Coach Josh Bull credited his team's fight last week and is hoping that grit will continue to serve them well.

"To my boys credit they dug deep last week and scrapped out a really gritty win." Bull said.

"We understand how tight the competition is and although we still have a lot of work on we are wrapt to take home the points."

The Bears are 1-2 and have a very strong percentage, so victory here can propel them into finals calculations.

Bottom placed Heatherton will travel to Hampton Park in search of their first victory of the season.

The home side's form has been a little deceptive with their performances a bit better than a 1-3 record would suggest. They would be favoured to land their second win of the season on Saturday, despite the good patches Heatherton have produced.

Hampton Park coach Nathan Wilson is confident his side is building well.

“We still think our best is certainly ahead of us, but things are starting to click, with such a young and new group we always knew it’d take some time.” Wilson said.

Probably the round's biggest match up is the clash between Keysborough and East Brighton at Rowley Allan Reserve.

The clash sees third host fifth, with one game separating the two combatants.

East Brighton lost by 32 points to the Doveton Doves last week but showed good signs, whilst Keyborough won comfortably over the bottom placed Heatherton.

The hosts could conceivably jump to second with a victory here with East Brighton a chance to jump into the four.

The team that currently sits fourth is Highett and they will host Skye in this Round Five clash.

Skye produced their most competitive performance of the season last week but failed to convert their chances on the way to an 8.17.65 scoreline.

The inaccuracy cost them any chance of a victory, but the same type of endeavour can make them competitive here.

Highett were only one kick away from being undefeated though, so they should prove a bit too strong in this one.



As we get to Round Five of the SFNL's Divison 3 competition, we have two sides who remain unbeaten and three without a victory in an eight team competition.

That imbalance will start to correct itself this week with two of those winless sides facing each other, and the unbeaten teams facing banana peel match ups.

Endeavour Hills and South Yarra will get the chance to record their first win of the season when they battle it out at Barry Simon Reserve.

Endeavour Hills have been the most competitive of the winless teams, but South Yarra showed their most promising signs of the year last week, even if the final score got ugly.

The home side has an average losing margin of 31 points, whereas South Yarra's defeats have still been far heavier, so Endeavour Hills would still be the favoured result.

Unbeaten Black Rock will face the other winless team Clayton this week.

Black Rock kicked 19 goals in a second half demolition of South Yarra last week and if they roll that momentum into this week it will spell all sorts of trouble for Clayton.

There is a clear difference in firepower, but Clayton have had moments where they've been able to restrict teams this year and they'll need to bring their best.

Match of the round is probably the top four clash between Carrum Patterson Lakes and Ashwood.

Both these teams are 3-1 with percentages well over 200 and the winner of this game would stake a claim for being equal flag favourites.

Statistically, on volume of score, defence, inside 50s, clearances and disposal numbers they have had nearly identical seasons.

Ashwood lost their first game of the season in a very close affair with Murrumbeena, a loss that doesn't damage their credentials too greatly.

Across all divisions this is possibly the most intriguing game of the weekend.

The Narre-South Saints will put their form to the test when they welcome the league leaders Murrumbeena to town.

It's games like this that can kick start a season, and a victory will certainly add them to the mix for 2022.

Saints coach Scott Mackenzie was pleased with their four quarter performance last week and they'll need another tomorrow.

“I was very happy with the boys four quarter effort. It was probably the first time we haven’t lapsed during a game this season.” Mackenzie said.

Murrumbeena coach Liam Wilson spoke about the significance of last week's win and the desire to get better again.

 “It was by far the most important game of our season to understand we all still have so much to learn from each other." Wilson said.



We have a full book of five matches across Round Five in the Southern Football Netball League's Division 4 competition this week.

Lyndale have a huge home clash with Hampton which presents an opportunity for them to stay in touch with the top half of the table.

They came from behind to down Cerberus last week by three points in a result that might kick start their campaign.

Hampton are at 2-2 and can climb as high as fourth with victory in this game. They've won back to back games after a sluggish start to the season and will be keen to get on a role now.

Statistically, the two sides are evenly matched, but Hampton's form has been more convincing, particularly in the past fortnight.

Cerberus come into their clash with South Mornington having produced their most competitive performance of the season last week.

This challenge, especially on the road, is a step up from last week but the fact they had a good look at victory last round having been nowhere near it in the opening rounds will

hopefully give them a spark.

South Mornington have a lot on the line at 2-2, especially given some of the other match ups this weekend, but their thumping win over Dandenong has them in good shape.

The Doveton Eagles (1-3) take on Hallam (3-1) at Power Reserve.

Hallam's thumping win over Moorabbin last week was very impressive, and with a percentage well in excess of 200, they are looming as a major threat.

The Eagles have been more competitive than their ladder position would suggest, but they look a level below this Hallam side coming into this clash.

That could all change in the next 24 hours though as a win could see them climb as high as sixth.

Possibly the most intriguing match up of the round is the clash between the Moorabbin Kangaroos and the Frankston Dolphins at Widdop Crescent Reserve.

The Kangaroos are 2-2 and got thumped last week but the scoreboard was perhaps a little deceiving.

Coach Stephen Ralph is expecting some second half momentum to carry into this clash against the league leaders.

"We had a much better second half effort despite the lack of scoreboard pressure. We'll take away some real positives from the game

but understand we have plenty to work on." Ralph said.

Frankston's firepower is the key here, they are averaging 124 points per game which is at least seven goals more than their nearest rival at this point of the year.

The final game of the round will see third place Lyndhurst host the fifth place Dandenong who are coming off a heavy defeat last week.

The home side suffered their first loss of the season last week against the powerful Dolphins to the tune of 49 points.

Dandenong's loss was almost identical against South Mornington at Greaves Reserve, kicking just four goals for the day.

If Lyndhurst win this, we could see a genuine breakaway between the top three and the rest.

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