SYDNEY AFL ROUND 18 2010
The final round of the Sydney AFL was played out on Saturday. It was election day, and while the battle for seats in Canberra was a knife-edge, positions in the Sydney AFL were very safe seats and it was already known who would be taking part in the playoffs. For those teams, the final round would be all about fine-tuning their teams and preparing themselves for finals footy; while for the five non-finallists this was the time for the clubs to wrap up their seasons and hope to go out on a positive note.
The TV game at Blacktown on Saturday night saw fourth-placed North Shore take on Campbelltown. The Blues had struggled in recent weeks, and were reduced to 19 men against Sydney Uni the previous week with the inevitable lopsided result. In their last appearance for the season, the Blues worked hard early and the finals-bound Bombers didn’t have everything their own way in the early stages of the game.
The Bombers suffered an early setback with key midfielder Lachlan Pryor forced to depart the game with a knee injury, and his participation in this year’s finals looks unlikely. Contesting every possession, the Blues made it difficult for the Bombers to get any sort of run going; and after 12 minutes the Blues took the lead when Luke Coughlan outmarked Bomber defender Michael Voyage before playing on to run into an open goal.
Sam Carruthers pounced on a boundary throw-in for an instant reply for the Bombers, and as the clock ticked into time-on, Evan Davis on the run snapped and goaled. Overall it had been a scrappy opening term, with the Bombers leading by 9 points at the first change.
The Blues took the lead early in the second quarter. Coughlan on the lead marked and kicked his second, and a double to Dale Chivas kept hopes alive for the Blues. But then the floodgates opened.
Kerrin Hughes, playing on after a marking contest, restored the North Shore lead. Ben Attwood set up a running Pat Brackin, then Evan Davis marked on a tight angle but had little difficulty converting. Damian Casey also converted a set shot from near the boundary, and when Ted Strudwick was marched forward 50 metres to the goalsquare, the Campbelltown resistance crumbled. The goals by now were coming nearly every minute, as the Bombers ended up with 11 for the quarter; converting a deficit into a 54-point lead.
The second half was even more lopsided, as the Blues were able to manage only two scoring shots for the half. It was a disappointing fadeout for the Blues, but the Bombers were impressive with their relentless drive. With finals just a week away, the ability to play out four quarters could be important in the playoffs, and the Bombers ensured there would be no letting up the pressure even when the game was safe.
By the time the procession was over, the final margin was 139 points for the Bombers. 12 Bombers got themselves into the goal-kicking list, with Kerrin Hughes and Pat Brackin scoring 5 and Evan Davis and Ted Strudwick weighing in with 4. Ruckman Russell Grigg, along with Davis and Hughes, were among North Shore’s best. For the Blues, Ben Yakimov and Ryan Bottin-Noonan worked hard all night.
For Campbelltown, there would be no repeat of their 2009 finals appearance. The Blues had started the season promisingly, and after Round 10 were only out of the finals on percentage. But depth was an issue for the Blues, their reserves in Third Division and their Under 18s struggling for enough numbers to put a team on the field every week. And when the inevitable injuries affected their senior team, the playing depth wasn’t there to take their place; and the Blues suffered some one-sided defeats late in the season. The Blues had shown the potential was there, and the Blues will be looking to expand their playing roster and will be keen to do all they can to ensure their local juniors can supply a bigger and better stream of talent for future seasons.
Two finalists were in action at Ern Holmes Oval on Saturday when Pennant Hills defeated East Coast by 27 points. The Demons got the early jump to go to a 14-point quarter time, and by half time the lead had stretched to 35 points at the long break. But the Eagles emerged from the sheds after the break full of running, and the lead was cut to 13 points at the last change. But the Demons steadied, ensuring the Eagles never took the lead.
Veteran Anthony Brawn had a successful day up forward with 5 goals, while the Demons were well served around the ground by Tom Angel, Alex Goodall and Cameron Smith. The Eagles’ charge was spearheaded by 4 goals by Mark Goodey, while Daniel Spiteri, Damian Bowles and Ryan Fitton were among the Eagles’ best.
Although the match had no bearing on the outcome of the finals, with the Eagles already guaranteed in the Qualifying Final while the Demons had already ensured their participation in the Elimination Final, it was a welcome result for the Demons and a good hit-out ahead of the playoffs. But it was a win tinged with sadness for the Pennant Hills Football Club, as they were playing on their traditional spiritual home of Ern Holmes Oval for the last time. 2011 will see the Demons take up a new home at Cherrybrook, a move anticipated to give the Demons a stronger future.
Sydney Uni wrapped up the minor premiership, earning themselves next weekend off, when the Students recorded a convincing 93 point win over St George at Olds Park on Saturday. The Students were their own worst enemy in the first term, their inaccuracy costing them; but once they found their radar in the second term the Students blew the Dragons out of the water. The lead was out to 42 points at half time, and with the Dragons held to just 1 goal per quarter in the second half, there was no way back into the contest and it was merely a matter of playing out time to end the St George season.
Mark Egan contributed 4 goals to the Students’ cause, while best around the ground for Sydney Uni were Richard Burrows, Adam McConnochie and Tim Barton. The Dragons were given good service by Daniel Napper, Declan Donohue and Stephen Wilsen.
St George’s season is over, the Dragons unable to make the finals for the second year in succession. It’s been a rebuilding phase for the Dragons, after recent departure of some big name players. A third of the way through the season, the Dragons had a 4-game winning streak and were threatening to challenge for a finals place. But that was as close as the Dragons were able to get, and they would win just two more games for the season.
The Dragons have worked well to develop their juniors, and the vast majority of their senior team played their local junior footy in the St George region. The Dragons’ under 18s will be competing in the finals this season, and they will be hoping the crop of youngsters from the under 18s will develop into a strong senior squad in years ahead.
Wests took on Wollongong in the final round at North Dalton, a ground that saw eventual premiers East Coast suffer a shock loss in the final round last season. But the Magpies wasted no time in ensuring that such an upset would not happen to them, putting the game out of Wollongong’s reach in the first quarter. 9 goals to 1 for the quarter blew the lead out to 46 points at the first change. The remainder of the game saw the Magpies content to defend their lead, and the final winning margin for Wests extended to 65 points.
The Magpie key forwards had a successful day to build up to the finals, with Matt Eurell scoring 5 goals and Matt Withers 4. Eid Kassem, Brenton Mumme and Withers were among the Magpies’ best, while the Lions received solid contribution around the ground from Ken Ewen-Chappell, Ryan Price and Jeremy Daniher.
A disappointing season for Wollongong has come to an end, with the Lions picking up the wooden spoon; their second in the last three seasons. The Lions, in six seasons since their promotion to Premier Division, have been unable to make the finals. But this season could have been a different story, with some agonisingly close losses early; and had the Lions been able to win those games, the momentum of their season may have been different. The Lions run themselves well off the field, and despite their lack of on-field success are usually in the top few teams in the Club of the Year voting. But the search for a winning team on the field remains elusive.
Balmain finished their season on a high, defeating UNSW-ES by 30 points at the Village Green on Saturday. Leading by 14 points at the first change, the Dockers then scored 8 goals to 2 in the second term to run to a 51 point lead at the long break. The Bulldogs won the second half, but by then the damage was done; and the final moments for both teams for the season was drawing to a close.
Ben Kinnaird, finishing his season with a wet sail, kicked 5 goals for the Dockers, and along with Chad Fletcher and Janis Blums was among Balmain’s best. For the Bulldogs, Josh Parmenter kicked 5, and Tim Garrett and Troy Luff were prominent performers for the Bulldogs.
Balmain started the season with lofty expectations after recruiting a group of former AFL players, but the Dockers’ hopes of a return to finals action were soon to be dashed. Although they recruited well, many of the recruits came to the club late; and a false start with their original coaching appointment forced the club’s preparation to start further behind. Even with quality recruits, it takes time for them to become truly part of a club – time the Dockers didn’t have. Later in the season, there was considerable improvement in the club’s fortunes, but it was too little too late. But if they can keep their new-look list intact, and do a complete pre-season, the Dockers may have the potential to be a force in 2011.
For UNSW-ES, 2010 was a fall from grace after a grand final appearance last season. The departure of key players was too great a hurdle to overcome. The Bulldogs suffered with depth compared to previous seasons, with both their First and Second division teams being relegated. The Bulldogs were forced into rebuilding, and coach Michael Carey rose to the challenge by bringing a production line of local juniors in to a taste of senior football. The loss of veteran forward Brad Abbott, who retired at the end of this season, will create a challenge for 2011. But the Bulldogs can look forward to a vastly improved 2011 as the crop of juniors develops.
With a Final Five in Premier Division, minor premiers Sydney Uni have the week off next weekend. Saturday serves up a mouth-watering opening to the finals series, with Wests taking on East Coast. Sunday is sudden death, with North Shore in action against Pennant Hills.
One of the strengths of the divisional structure is that more clubs than was previously the case have some representation during the finals – and each day of the finals will see plenty of different clubs in action.
In First Division, UTS take out the minor premiership for the second straight season and have the week off. Manly-Warringah take on Sydney Uni on Saturday for the right to play off against UTS; while Sunday sees Macquarie Uni meet North Shore.
It’s a Final Four in Second Division. Southern Power and UTS play off on Saturday for a grand final berth. Sunday sees Holroyd-Parramatta take on NorWest Jets in sudden death.
In Third Division, Moorebank Sports will face off against UTS for a spot in the grand final. On Sunday, there’s no second chance for Penrith or Southern Power as they face off in the first semi final.
In Fourth Division, new clubs Auburn and Saints AFC have made the double-chance and will play each other on Saturday. Sunday sees a sudden death encounter, with Moorebank Sports taking on Mac Uni Warriors. With only 4 of 14 teams making the finals in Fourth Division, there were always going to be some teams desperately unlucky to miss out.
In the Under 18s Premier Cup, East Coast Eagles have qualified for the week off. The qualifying final on Saturday sees North Shore matched up against Sydney Uni. On Sunday, the elimination final matches St George against Pennant Hills.
The Under 18s Challenge Cup finals sees the undefeated Penrith take on Southern Power for a grand final spot, while the sudden death final has Holroyd-Parramatta against Manly-Warringah.
North Shore 2.2 13.5 20.8 28.12 (180)
Campbelltown 1.4 4.5 5.5 6.5 (41)
Goals : North Shore –
K Hughes 5, P Brackin 5, E Davis 4, T Strudwick 4, C Murphy 3, D Casey, J Harry, R Grigg, J Stiller, B Fitzgerald, S Carruthers, B Attwood. Campbelltown –
L Coughlan 2, D Chivas 2, F Brown, J Bottin-Noonan.
Best : North Shore –
R Grigg, E Davis, K Hughes, B Fitzgerald, J Harry, T Strudwick. Campbelltown –
B Yakimov, R Bottin-Noonan, D Wolfe, J Bottin-Noonan, D Chivas, M Keys.
At Blacktown Olympic Park, Saturday 21st August 2010.
Pennant Hills 5.3 9.6 11.9 15.14 (104)
East Coast Eagles 3.1 4.1 10.2 12.5 (77)
Goals : Pennant Hills –
A Brawn 5, L Bilbe 2, J Ferguson 2, J Clarke, D De Looze, B Jack, T Angel, N Wright, B Beaston. East Coast –
M Goodey 4, B Physick 2, Jon Vlatko, Jamie Vlatko, B Rogers, L McLeod, S O’Connor, D Spiteri.
Best : Pennant Hills –
T Angel, A Goodall, C Smith, K Wright, J Low, L Ferguson. East Coast –
D Spiteri, D Bowles, R Fitton, M Beardsley, M Goodey, K Pearson.
At Ern Holmes Oval, Saturday 21st August 2010.
Sydney University 2.6 7.9 14.11 17.15 (117)
St George 1.1 1.3 2.4 3.6 (24)
Goals : Sydney Uni –
M Egan 4, S Crichton 3, A McConnochie 2, A Lee 2, A Kraefft 2, A Turco, J McGuirk, N Perry, T Elkington. St George –
D Pratt, D Ryan, N Smith.
Best : Sydney Uni –
R Burrows, A McConnochie, T Barton, B Mankarious, J McIntyre, S Sloane. St George –
D Napper, D Donohue, S Wilsen, M Holmes, A Tarasuik, J Shineberg.
At Olds Park, Saturday 21st August 2010.
Western Suburbs 9.1 10.3 14.3 17.6 (108)
Wollongong 1.3 3.3 6.5 6.7 (43)
Goals : Wests –
M Eurell 5, M Withers 4, C Lees 2, E Kassem, J Minichiello, B Mumme, C McGrath, K Cochrane, B Bray. Wollongong –
B Patterson 2, T Heath, R Price, K Ewen-Chappell, J Daniher.
Best : Wests –
E Kassem, B Mumme, M Withers, M Eurell, D Clout, C McGuirk. Wollongong –
K Ewen-Chappell, R Price, B Black, J Daniher, M Toussis.
At North Dalton Oval, Saturday 21st August 2010.
Balmain Dockers 3.4 11.8 15.11 18.16 (124)
UNSW-ES 1.2 3.5 9.10 14.10 (94)
Goals : Balmain –
B Kinnard 5, J Saddington 3, J Howard 3, N Davis 2, C Fletcher, J Black, N Fosdike, A Clark, D Brian. UNSW-ES –
J Parmenter 5, T Luff 3, B Abbott 2, X Brennan 2, E Shaw, C Jourdain.
Best : Balmain –
C Fletcher, B Kinnaird, J Blums, C Brown, T Stevens, S Schmidt. UNSW-ES –
T Garrett, T Luff, J Parmenter, A White, X Brennan, M Collett.
At Village Green, Saturday 21st August 2010.
|East Coast Eagles||18||13||0||5||2,129||1,105||52||192.67||L1|
Black - Confirmed finalists
Purple - Non-finallists
Red - Expected to be relegated
Manly-Warringah 16.12 (108) d UNSW-ES 5.5 (35)
Pennant Hills 10.9 (69) d East Coast Eagles 5.3 (33)
UTS 11.10 (76) d North Shore 8.4 (52)
Macquarie Uni 8.9 (57) d Sydney Uni 3.13 (31)
Wollongong 6.6 (42) d Western Suburbs 4.11 (35)
UTS (64, 281.08%), Manly-Warringah (56, 164.59%), Sydney Uni (52, 189.73%), Macquarie Uni (52, 169.29%), North Shore (44, 129.98%), Pennant Hills (32, 82.25%), East Coast (20, 68.64%), Western Suburbs (20, 52.98%), Wollongong (12, 47.55%)
, UNSW-ES (8, 46.08%).
Balmain Dockers 13.15 (93) d UNSW-ES 8.8 (56)
NorWest Jets 8.9 (57) d St George 8.7 (55)
UTS 16.12 (108) d Camden 4.6 (30)
Holroyd-Parramatta 8.4 (52) d Sydney Uni 5.13 (43)
Southern Power 10.12 (72) d Manly-Warringah 7.4 (46)
Ladder (Match Ratio) –
Southern Power (94.44, 336.11%), UTS (94.44, 222.81%), Holroyd-Parramatta (66.67, 127.51%), NorWest (55.56, 131.34%), Sydney Uni (52.94, 106.11%), Balmain (35.29, 62.05%), St George (29.41, 75.07%), Camden (29.41, 56.55%), Manly-Warringah (27.78, 65.40%)
, UNSW-ES (11.11, 43.46%).
Pennant Hills 9.4 (58) d East Coast Eagles 5.13 (43)
UTS 20.13 (133) d Macquarie Uni 5.7 (37)
Sydney Uni 20.11 (131) d Holroyd-Parramatta 1.2 (8)
Penrith 13.7 (85) d Southern Power 10.13 (73)
Moorebank Sports 16.14 (110) d Campbelltown 11.5 (71)
Moorebank Sports (64, 232.15%), UTS (56, 201.46%), Penrith (52, 195.05%), Southern Power (48, 148.31%), Macquarie Uni (40, 114.55%), East Coast (28, 95.14%), Sydney Uni (24, 79.25%), Campbelltown (24, 52.10%), Pennant Hills (16, 45.28%), Holroyd-Parramatta (8, 31.52%).
Mac Uni Kookas 10.5 (65) d Holroyd-Parramatta 5.4 (34)
Southern Power 6.7 (43) d Penrith 6.4 (40)
UTS 12.20 (92) d Camden 4.2 (26)
NorWest Jets 14.7 (91) d UNSW-ES 8.7 (55)
Mac Uni Warriors 13.10 (88) d Sydney Uni 6.6 (42)
Auburn 17.9 (111) d Manly-Warringah 4.8 (32)
Moorebank Sports 13.19 (97) d Saints AFC 3.2 (20)
Auburn (72, 286.15%), Saints AFC (52, 186.09%), Moorebank Sports (48, 195.24%), Mac Uni Warriors (48, 188.00%), UTS (48, 178.37%), Penrith (44, 126.97%), Manly-Warringah (40, 120.96%), NorWest (40, 92.82%), Sydney Uni (28, 85.97%), Mac Uni Kookas (28, 50.29%), UNSW-ES (24, 72.60%), Southern Power (20, 67.31%), Camden (12, 44.96%), Holroyd-Parramatta (0, 15.60%).
Under 18s Premier:
East Coast Eagles 5.13 (43) d Pennant Hills 5.10 (40)
Sydney Uni 13.13 (91) d St George 7.4 (46)
North Shore 20.8 (128) d St Ignatius Riverview 5.3 (33)
Western Suburbs 9.5 (59) d Wollongong 6.6 (42)
Ladder (Match Ratio) –
East Coast (81.25, 225.28%), North Shore (81.25, 194.55%), Sydney Uni (68.75, 196.29%), St George (66.67, 109.66%), Pennant Hills (56.25, 146.54%), Western Suburbs (43.75, 76.21%), St Ignatius Riverview (40, 101.30%), UNSW-ES (31.25, 66.91%), Wollongong (26.67, 59.47%), Campbelltown (0, 9.94%)
Under 18s Challenge:
Holroyd-Parramatta 18.12 (120) d Moorebank Sports 0.0 (0)
Penrith 17.10 (112) d Southern Power 2.4 (16)
Macquarie Uni 4.12 (36) d East Coast 4.5 (29)
Ladder (Match Ratio) –
Penrith (100, 1265.19%), Southern Power (73.33, 134.85%), Holroyd-Parramatta (56.25, 128.54%), Manly-Warringah (40, 63.48%), Macquarie Uni (33.33, 57.76%), Moorebank Sports (26.67, 52.00%), East Coast (18.75, 42.67%)
FINALS WEEK 1 FIXTURES:
Saturday 28th August
Qualifying Finals – Blacktown Olympic Park
10:00am – Under 18s Premier – North Shore v Sydney Uni
12:00pm – First Division – Manly-Warringah v Sydney Uni
2:10pm – Premier Division – Western Suburbs v East Coast Eagles
Second Semi Finals – Henson Park
8:30am – Under 18s Challenge – Penrith v Southern Power
10:30am – Fourth Division – Auburn v Saints AFC
12:45pm – Third Division – Moorebank Sports v UTS
3:00pm – Second Division – Southern Power v UTS
Sunday 29th August
Elimination Finals – Blacktown Olympic Park
10:00pm – Under 18s Premier – St George v Pennant Hills
12:00pm – First Division – Macquarie Uni v North Shore
2:10pm – Premier Division – North Shore v Pennant Hills
First Semi Finals – Henson Park
8:30am – Under 18s Challenge – Holroyd-Paramatta v Manly-Warringah
10:30am – Fourth Division – Moorebank Sports v Mac Uni Warriors
12:45pm – Third Division – Penrith v Southern Power
3:00pm – Second Division – Holroyd-Parramatta v NorWest Jets