Vital time for sides from North

Northern Rangers centre forward Shane Brassington. Picture: PHILLIP BIGGS

Northern Rangers centre forward Shane Brassington. Picture: PHILLIP BIGGS

A VICTORY League double-header at the NTCA ground could shape the season for Northern Rangers and Launceston City when they play Hobart Zebras and Olympia tomorrow.

Rangers will be desperate to bounce back from last week's drubbing by ladder leader South Hobart, knowing a loss would see Zebras take its third place spot on the ladder.

Coach Tim Lunnon said it was vital the club bounced back.

"Zebras are a team capable of anything so it is important that we come ready to play," Lunnon said. "In the context of our season it becomes a bit of a make or break game, and we expect the boys to come ready for a tough contest."

Rangers will be without Nick Lanau-Atkinson for up to six weeks after he injured his knee in a collision with South's goalkeeper Kane Pierce last week.

Zebras coach Jed Donoghue hopes to have the same team on the pitch but both Kurt Engels and Andy Clark are doubtful.

Last-placed Launceston City has the harder match of the double-header, against second-placed Olympia, fired up by a loss to Zebras last week.

City coach Kurt Reynolds will be without the injured Toby Omenihu and Aaron Mattarozzi but has Shane and Dan Egan returning from overseas.

"This is another critical match for us as we endeavour to improve our position on the ladder," Reynolds said.

Devonport City will need a win against Glenorchy Knights to keep its top-four hopes alive but will miss suspended midfielders Joel Stone and Cory Vickers.

Reigning champion South Hobart hosts Kingborough Lions on Sunday.

Tomorrow's games - Northern Rangers v Hobart Zebras at NTCA (1pm); Launceston City v Olympia at NTCA (3pm); Glenorchy Knights v Devonport City at KGV (2pm). Sunday's game: South Hobart v Kingborough Lions at Darcy Street (2pm)

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