A back six brimming with youth is driving Launceston towards a dream all-Northern TSL grand final.
Ryan Tyrrell (20), Jacob Boyd (19), Miller Hodge (19) and Jack Tuthill (18) have played every game this season as part of back six which has conceded just 167 points in the past four weeks.
The Blues have surrendered three-figure totals just twice this season - three times fewer than 2018 - and only the Jay Foon, Arion Richter-Salter and Jack Avent-led defence of North Launceston has conceded fewer points over the year.
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Forward-turned-defender Hodge says chemistry built on a decade of playing together is the secret.
"Jack, Jacob Boyd and myself all played junior football together from under-nines all the way through so we've all played a lot together," he said.
"I think it's helped that us three and Ryan as well we're all close mates - he's only a year older and we all work well together.
"I also think Mitch [Thorp] has helped us know our roles as a side and I think anyone could fit in there."
Fourth at the end of the home and away season, Launceston has recorded successive 10-goal wins en route to Saturday's preliminary final against Lauderdale.
Few had the Blues as genuine premiership contenders at the start of the season, but a run of four consecutive wins combined with the Southern Bombers' patchy form indicates Hodge's side is a real chance to make September 21's decider at Bellerive Oval.
TIME TO DECIDE:
"We're a close group and I think that's why we're playing so well - we play for each other and try and do our best for one another," the former Scotch Oakburn student said.
"There's been a lot of young players and a lot of us have played junior football together, but the way Mitch has coached us has brought us together as a unit too.
"So even the older boys, even though there's only a few, are close in the group and everyone fits in.
"This is my fourth year being involved in the senior squad and I'd probably say this group is the closest group there is.
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