NTFA division 2, round 3 2018: Lilydale to awaken sleeping Scotch giant

FIT AND FIRING: Key defender Seb Woof was Evandale's best in a come-from-behind win over Old Scotch last weekend. Picture: Scott Gelston
FIT AND FIRING: Key defender Seb Woof was Evandale's best in a come-from-behind win over Old Scotch last weekend. Picture: Scott Gelston

There’s an element of the bizarre as the second division’s two powerhouse clubs prepare to meet on Saturday.

The only sides to have won the premiership in the past six years, Lilydale and Old Scotch are winless heading into round three - the former having endured an abandoned match and a bye and the latter two losses.

Lilydale plans to treat the match as its first of the season after playing just two minutes of its round one clash with Evandale, and will bring in pacy half-forward Shaun Avent for the unavailable Beau Tuthill.

“We’ve done two weeks of pretty intense, hard training,” coach Colin Lockhart said.

“(Old Scotch) will be at their best against us, you watch them play other sides and they probably take other sides a bit easier - they won’t be taking us easy.”

ST PATS and Old Launcestonians find themselves on the opposite side of the ledger as the only sides at 2-0.

The form of captain Tomas Hilder, Tim Seen and Julian James in last week’s win has Alex Russell confident his Saints side can make it three from three.

“We’re excited to play a team which has changed so much from last year - we enjoy a challenge but we should be able to win,” he said.

Straight kicking kept the Blues’ spotless record intact last week, and coach Paul Beechey said his side would need to fire again to compete with the “form side”. 

“It’ll be interesting once again to see where we’re at,” he said. “It’ll be a really good test for us up at St Pats.”

Ned Hyland’s EAST COAST was a bit scratchy in its season opener against Bridport and will focus on building chemistry during its trip to Beauty Point.

Shaun Cannon and Fraser Robinson will replace Brad Goodyer and Leigh Gillies. 

“I think we’re a long way off playing our best football but that was to be expected,” Hyland said.

“Going in with a new team it’s going to take time to gel but in our good patches we looked really good, it’s just building consistency and comfort in the group.”

Tamar coach Wayne Kirby said his side would be “very much the underdogs” against the reigning grand finalists.

“The home ground will be a big help to us but I think it will come down to our accountability,” he said.

UNI-MOWBRAY’s win over Tamar came with a big cost, with Tom Hartley (broken leg) and Tim Witherden (achilles) set to spend time on the sidelines.

A hungry Magpies side awaits and Alan Perrin knows his charges can ill afford the concentration lapses which nearly saw them surrender the four points. 

“This week we’ve got Perth which means we can’t possibly have those lapses otherwise we will get beaten,” he said.

EVANDALE should regain small forward Damien Wrankmore for the home clash with Meander Valley.

Coach James Storay paid tribute to Seb Woof’s shutdown role on George Walker in the Country Eagles’ comeback win over Old Scotch. 

“We trailed all night but it was good to finally play the brand of footy we wanted to play in the last quarter,” Storay said.