NTFA division 1 2018, round 2: George Town, Kangaroos in youth fight

SHARKS CIRCLING: Hillwood will take to the field for the first time this season after sitting out last week with the bye.
SHARKS CIRCLING: Hillwood will take to the field for the first time this season after sitting out last week with the bye.

Two of the competition’s youngest sides will do battle this weekend when George Town host Deloraine.

Allan O’Sign’s Saints showed some good signs in their opening three-goal loss to Rocherlea and will back themselves to register a maiden win against last season’s wooden-spooners.

“I thought we were quite impressive in patches,” O’Sign said of George Town’s round 1 match. 

“Our young guys who came into the team were really good, Brandon Maynard and Darcy Layh were really impressive and Chev Deacon was a bit of a goalsneak up there for us.

“We’ve got a good bunch of young fellas coming through and they’re all willing to put their hand up and play the way we want to play which is really good.”

Opposition coach Bradley Powe will welcome Will Smith and Adam Crawford back into his 22, as well as unveil his fourth debutant of the season in teenager Dylan Jones. 

“He’s a clever forward who knows how to kick a goal,” Powe said of his debutant.

“We’ve got high hopes for him in future years and it’s a good opportunity to debut him.”

SCOTTSDALE coach Geoff Mohr is keen to amend a hot-and-cold loss to Bracknell when his side hosts the first night game of the season on Saturday.

Having turned a 50-point deficit into a 15-point loss last weekend, Mohr will task his side with replicating its last-quarter surge throughout the whole match against Lyndon Stubbs’ Rocherlea.

“They’re always a tough side, they’ve got some very good players in their side still so we’ve got to make sure we’re accountable for them,” Mohr said.

“We want to make sure we’re always pressuring the opposition so if we do that and force them to make mistakes we should be able to get a win.”

Beau Thorp’s LONGFORD will face another tough test after falling to reigning premier South Launceston in the opening round.

The Country Tigers haven’t beaten round 2 opponent Bracknell since the opening game of 2014, but can take confidence from coming within a goal of the Redlegs twice in the past two seasons. 

Longford will also be boosted by the return of Zeke Gossage to the backline. 

“We came up against the premiership side last week so not much will change heading into this week against another grand finalist,” Thorp said.

“We’ll be playing a very similar gamestyle.”

HILLWOOD will get its season under way by taking on South Launceston at home in what could be the game of the round.

The Sharks were one of only three sides to topple the Bulldogs last season, recording a 28-point upset at Youngtown in round one. 

BRIDGENORTH has the bye.