Whitford ready for clash of old rivals

NORTHERN Bombers vice-captain Taylor Whitford is the first to admit that Launceston has had the better of their city rivalry over the past few years yet he can't wait for the Good Friday clash with the Blues.

"They have had our measure but in the last couple of games they've only won by a kick or two and Friday night should be a good spectacle," he said.

The two clubs have set the scene for the State League's top billing over the Easter round after both won their opening games.

Whitford played his part in the Northern Bombers' surprise 26-point win over Burnie at West Park and was voted best afield in the RACT Insurance Player of the Year Award.

"There was a good feeling amongst the boys and we were confident in our own ability that we could match Burnie," Whitford said.

"We had worked very hard on our speed power over the summer and it showed against Burnie."

Whitford, 22, is enjoying being part of the leadership group and is into his third senior year with the Northern Bombers.

He started at the club as a junior but then played with the South Adelaide Football Club before having a season with the Wodonga Bulldogs in the Ovens And Murray Football League.

Whitford said his aim for 2014 was to play finals with the Northern Bombers and judging on their win against the Dockers on Saturday night his prediction will be not too far away.

Whitford is the son of former senior coach Chris Whitford who has returned to the club and is working alongside Anthony Loone in a development role helping the young players in the club.

Veteran Launceston defender Gary Shipton claimed best afield votes in his team's 18-point win over Western Storm and will be hoping his early season form continues on Friday night at Aurora Stadium.

The 32-year-old is closing in on the 250-game milestone with the Blues in what has been an outstanding career.

HOW THEY POLLED

LAUDERDALE V HOBART CITY

3 - Elijah Taylor (Lauderdale)

2 - Michael Cassidy (Lauderdale

1 - Aden Johnston (Lauderdale)

LAUNCESTON V WESTERN STORM

3 - Gary Shipton (Launceston)

2 - Joe Groenewegen (Launceston)

1 - Zane Brown (Western Storm)

CLARENCE V GLENORCHY

3 - James Charlesworth (Clarence)

2 - Jeromey Webberley (Clarence)

1 - Aaron Cornelius (Glenorchy)

TIGERS V DEVONPORT

3 - Beau Sharman (Devonport)

2 - Kade Pitchford (Devonport)

1 - Mackenzie Willis (Tigers)

BURNIE V NORTH LAUNCESTON

3 - Taylor Whitford (North Launceston)

2 - Allan O'Sign (North Launceston)

1 - Caleb Hislop (Burnie)

LEADER BOARD

3 - J Charlesworth (Clarence), B Sharman (Devonport),E Taylor (Lauderdale), G Shipton (Launceston), T Whitford (North Launceston).

2 - J Webberley (Clarence), K Pitchford (Devonport), M Cassidy (Lauderdale), J Groenewegen (Launceston), A O'Sign (North Launceston).

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