North Launceston coach Taylor Whitford says his players will not be duped by his Tigers counterpart’s tactics for a second time on Saturday.
Tigers have twice fallen to the Northern Bombers at UTAS Stadium. Once by 60 points and the second time by half that margin with Trent Baumeler shuffling a few things around and catching Whitford’s men off guard.
And Baumeler said he may have a few more to unveil at Twin Ovals for take three.
“We’ve sort of narrowed the gap each time we’ve gone against them,” he said.
“There are some great players in their team to give some of our young guys some match-ups as well to get some on-the-job training.
“There are some things there that worked for us against them and we’ll be trying to implement them.”
Jakob Lister has been swapped out for Matthew Coad with Baumeler asking his charges to capitalise on their forward 50 opportunities, pressure North’s ball carriers and cut down the reigning premier’s marks in space.
North have dropped just two matches this season and regain draft prospect Rhyan Mansell and ruckman Alex Lee for round 16.
“We probably got out-pointed a little bit with some decisions that were made by Trent last time where he changed a few things up, so we’re looking to be proactive this week,” Whitford said.
“We’ve got four Hobart trips out of five games, which is really good leading into finals. We play Clarence, Glenorchy, Lauderdale – some tough matches so this one is important.”
LAUNCESTON has not registered a point since taking down North Hobart in round 9, but will be looking to celebrate reigning best and fairest Brodie Palfreyman's 50th match with a long-awaited victory.
Demons star Colin Garland said his teammates are probably running into Launceston at a time “they are starting to come good again” following the Blues’ one-point loss to rivals North.
“We are looking to go up there to express ourselves, take the game on and you never know what can happen,” he said.
“If you take them lightly you’d be silly, but we do take a bit of confidence in the fact a young side like the Tigers beat them a few weeks ago.”
Both sides are strengthened by the returns of Tasmania’s only under-18s All-Australians Mitch O’Neill and Chayce Jones with Blues boss Sam Lonergan looking to build towards finals time.
Lonergan has made several positional changes of late such as sending Jobi Harper to centre-half back to cover the re-located Jimmy Aganas, Dylan Riley to full-forward and Rulla Kelly-Mansell to half back. “My expectation from here is that we will improve significantly over the back half of the year which you see in the highest level.
“We know we can produce that level of football [last week] but it was nice to produce that level of football after not producing it the previous three weeks.
“The best thing about North Hobart is that each and every one of their players play to the last minute.”