SHEPPARTON UNITED V MOOROOPNA
Mooroopna will be looking to bounce back to the winners’ list and consolidate its place in the top six as the race to September hots up.
The Cats were outplayed in the second half of the last round by reigning premier and coach John Lamont, who has had a couple of weeks to review and implement some tweaks to the game plan after the inclusion of mid-season recruit Jackson Trengove.
Trengove is likely to pose some huge headaches for the undersized Shepparton United defence.
Throw in the class and speed of Chris Nield who leads in goalkicking with 47 goals, and it could prove to be a tough afternoon for the Demons.
Liam Serra, Robbie Mifka, Adam Pigatto, Jamie Atkinson, Kaedyn Napier and Edwards Adams will need to play well for the home team to be competitive.
Liam Betson, Dom Gugliotti, Jed Woods, Ben Hicks and Matt Deane will be the players looking to get plenty of supply to Trengove and Neild to ensure they kick the Cats to victory.
ROCHESTER V BENALLA
This will be an interesting contest for several reasons.
Benalla has managed to improve in the second half of the season, having won three games and putting up a competitive effort against Seymour in 12.
The Tigers have been doing their best to remain competitive in the face of adversity.
They have so many regulars out of their best 21, but they remain in the hunt to play finals.
And, they received a hand last round when the Swans upset sixth-placed Seymour to ensure the two teams remained locked on 28 points each going into this round.
Jake Pallpratt, Joshua Marchbank, James Martiniello, Christopher Welsh, Adam Walsh, Will Martiniello and Jarrod Waite will be doing their best to keep the winning form going of the Saints.
The Saints will take plenty of confidence into this game, having come from behind to defeat Tatura with a six-goal last quarter.
Rochester was competitive in its loss to Mansfield last weekend.
The returning Shaun Atley gives the Tigers a massive boost. He adds class through that middle part of the ground and around the stoppages.
If the likes of Christopher Jansen, Steven Stroobants (four goals), Lachlan Harper and Hugh Hamilton can follow Atley’s lead, then the Tigers should be able to get the win.
MANSFIELD V SHEPPARTON
Mansfield will be looking for three wins on the bounce when it welcomes Shepparton to the Alpine Country.
This is a game that the Eagles can’t afford to drop as it chases a top two finish which would give them a double chance going into September.
That said, the young Bears are looking to finish off with as many wins as possible as it looks to build towards 2023.
Jayden Dhosi, Nick Allan, Rhiley Lau, Hamish Rowlands, Jed Warrin and coach Ted Lindon will be looking to make it hard for the home team.
While the Eagles will look to Corey Rich, Dirk Koenen, Harry Mahoney, James Herridge, Ben Christopher and Will Foster to get the four points.
ECHUCA V TATURA
Echuca will be looking to take a step closer to sewing up the minor premiership when it welcomes Tatura to Victoria Park.
The Murray Bombers had a statement win last round, defeating its closest rival and fellow premiership aspirant Euroa.
That said, co-coach Simon Maddox will be warning his players to not take the Dogs lightly.
Riley Smith, co-coach Andrew Walker Daniel Willis, Ruory Kirkby and Jackson Stewart will be important for the Murray Bombers.
Unfortunately, the home team will be without Jack McHale who will miss the next two games due to suspension.
Tatura will look to Billy Cooper, Comanche Walls, Tom Sullivan, Sean McAllister and Chris Ryan to lead the way while the visitors are likely to be without the experience of Brad Ryan who was injured in last round’s loss to Benalla.
SEYMOUR V KYABRAM
This is a huge game in the context of the season of Seymour.
After a shock defeat at Princess Park last weekend, the Lions now have a big challenge on their hands to qualify for the finals, especially with games against Mooroopna and Euroa to come after today.
Lachlan Smith, Jake Reeves, Cade Mueller, Nic Denahy, Jack Sheldon and Jason Morgan were outstanding in the team’s big win over Mooroopna in the first part of the split round.
Coach Paul Newman will be after much of what the Bombers dished up in the second half for the four quarters today.
While Lions coach Ben Davey will turn to Riley Mason, Kyle Winter-Irving, Tom Hedley, James Wooster, Ben Rigoni and Jack Murphy to try and lead them to victory.
For mine, the Bombers have more avenues to goal that will be the difference in the final wash up.
EUROA V SHEPPARTON SWANS
This is an intriguing contest for a variety of reasons.
Euroa coach Scott Rowan will be looking for a response from his players after the big loss to Echuca on home soil in the first part of the split round.
He knows that his team is much better than that and there will be no doubt there will be a response.
That said, the Swans will be coming to Memorial Oval full of confidence after a gritty two-point win over Seymour.
Swans coach Andrew Riordan will be looking to Tyreece Collison, Bryden Squire, Zac Banch, Max Clohesy and Bowen Calogero to continue their good form of last round to try and combat the best of what Adam Giobbi, Andrew Smith, Max Gleeson, Jack Hellier and Andrew Bell can dish up.
For mine, the Pies have too much to play for and should be able to bank the win to remain in contention for a top two finish.