Tigers and Sharks to chase midfield control

THE midfield contests will be crucial in deciding the outcome of tomorrow's NTFA division 1 clash between Longford and Bridgenorth as the Tigers look to bounce back from last week's loss to Hillwood.

Coach Matthew O'Donoghue said missed opportunities in front of goal proved costly in the disappointing result and they did not have enough winners on the day.

O'Donoghue said Longford and Bridgenorth traditionally matched up well and had close contests with both teams playing a similar quick, free-flowing style of football.

"They have a strong midfield which is one of their strengths and we will try to get on top in there early and win the clearances and stoppages," he said.

"If we let their midfield get on top and pump it into their forward line it will put our backs under the pump and be a long day for us."

The Tigers could have up to four changes with Sam Roach and Todd Rattray expected to return after being late withdrawals last week and Luke Pearton also a chance to come in.

BRIDGENORTH is coming off a bye and despite beating Hillwood in round 1, Parrots coach Michael Bowden said his team still had things to work on and the week off had allowed them to do that.

"It's always a tight one against Longford and doesn't matter where we are situated on the ladder and I expect it to be the same this weekend," he said.

The Parrots should be unchanged.

ROCHERLEA takes on Hillwood looking to continue its unbeaten start to the season.

Coach Andrew Philpott was happy with his team's performance after a wasteful first quarter against Bracknell.

"We had a lot of ball in the first quarter but turned it over and Bracknell really made us play and were good early," he said.

"We went back to our game plan in the second half and blokes grew in confidence and away we went."

Philpott rated Hillwood highly as a top-three side and premiership contender.

Jordan Cousens should return with a wait and see approach on Daniel Maynard and Andrea Miar.

HILLWOOD has been decimated by injuries and could be missing up to nine players.

Four players went to hospital after last week's game and among the missing will be Elliott Barnes, Owen Hardwick, Heath Fox, Shannon Buller and Brady Squires.

Coach Max Pearce said the Sharks played well to beat the Tigers despite not having any players on the bench from early in the third quarter.

DELORAINE coach Rory Mansell was looking forward to taking on a vastly improved Scottsdale side in front of a home crowd for the first time this season.

He said he was looking for a four-quarter effort and eliminating mental lapses in concentration when players go away from their game plan and structure.

Ryland Coombe returns to strengthen the midfield after being unavailable last week.

SCOTTSDALE held South Launceston for the first half last week and coach Tony Power expected another big challenge against Deloraine.

"In stages we played quite well but South are a very good footy side and once they got a bit of a blow on we went back to our old ways a bit and they blew us out of the water in the second half," he said.

SOUTH LAUNCESTON takes on Bracknell with Adam Viney returning for the unavailable Scott Towns.

Bulldogs coach Aaron Viney was happy with their second half against Scottsdale last week and praised the efforts of Darren Crawford and Shane Wager.

BRACKNELL coach Josh Nunn said South looked the benchmark side of the competition.

He said the Redlegs started well last week but missed opportunities in the second quarter and fell away in intensity, unable to maintain a four- quarter effort.

Jacob Gelston is unavailable.


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