By Gary Williamson
Lindisfarne v New Norfolk
IN the game all the football public have been waiting for this season, the undefeated Lindisfarne today host the red hot New Norfolk in a game for top position and premiership favouritism. The Blues had the bye last weeknd and will have freshened up and rested players to have them in prime condition for the top of the table clash but coming off a bye is always difficult. The Eagles have been winning very easily over the previous weeks and it is not their preferred preparation for a much harder contest but I am sure they will lift and attempt to show they are the best side in the competition.
Both sides have quality midfields and the Blues appear to be a bit quicker across the ground where the Eagles are a lot tougher and stronger brigade and the outcome of this battle should decide the game. Both have quality forwards and if any of these players are given space to lead into then they should be able to generate enough shots at goal to kick a winning score.
The Eagles need to restrict Lindisfarne’s running back line otherwise if they create the loose man they will have too much ability to run the ball through the corridor to set up scoring opportunities. You would expect a big home crowd to be an advantage for Lindisfarne but the Eagles have really been looking for a big challenge. They should be slightly too good but it will be interesting to see how much the Blues have improved.
- James Bresnehan writes in today's Mercury: the Eagles need to come down to earth
Claremont v Brighton
Claremont are back at home today and looking to bounce back but should have a real fight on their hands as Brighton have moved up to fourth on the ladder and will be desperate for another win away from home. The Magpies, after a great win the previous fortnight, really collapsed away from home against Dodges Ferry and need to recapture their best form if they are to defeat their talented rivals. The Robins also need to vastly improve after struggling to defeat the bottom of the ladder Central Hawks at home last week and must really lift to play a quality side.
It will be vitally important for Brighton to get off to a good start as in front of a vocal home crowd the Magpies always are a lot better side on their home ground. If Claremont get off to a flying start their confidence grows and they are impossible to defeat. Both sides look evenly matched in the midfield and whichever side gets their key forwards on top and kicks the vital goals will decide this game as any wasted opportunities will be crucial. In a game that could go either way perhaps the Robins may have a little too much class and take the points but Claremont are a lot better side at home and it would not surprise to see them win easily.
Huonville v Sorell
Huonville are back at home and will be confident of recording their second win of the season but face an in form Sorell who won their second game last week and also see an opportunity to win another game. The Lions were thrashed as expected last weekend by the Fevola show at New Norfolk but their previous game at home was very good and they will be determined to perform well in front of their home crowd. Sorell recorded their second win of the season by defeating East Coast last weekend and would have gained some much needed confidence on how to win games of football. In a game that could go either way you would expect the Lions to win at home as the Sorell Eagles have a poor away record and the opposition will really lift knowing this is a winnable game.
East Coast v Kingborough
East Coast are back at home but face a mammoth task to record their third win of the season when they host the in form Kingborough. You would expect the Bombers at home to be competitive for most of the game but the Tigers have too much firepower and should record a comfortable win away from home to continue their surge up the ladder.
Cygnet v Dodges Ferry
Cygnet are back at home and will be looking to rebound after last weeks poor performance but have a hard task at hand as they host the in form Dodges Ferry who will be looking to consolidate third position on the ladder. You would expect the Port to really perform strongly at home and they should stay in the game for most of the four quarters but the Sharks have an edge in class and should record another win away from home to keep in touch with the top two sides.