A CHANCE to secure a mid-season morale boost presents itself when Russells Creek and Timboon Demons clash at Mack Oval today.
The two sides, among four at the bottom of the Warrnambool and District league ladder, have tasted just one win between them from 16 matches.
Their campaigns are such that developing juniors has taken priority as respective coaches Jay Everall and Brendan Hickey looked to lay a platform for the future.
But with four points within grasp, competitive instincts will take over, particularly for the winless Kangaroos.
Everall, back at the club he won a premiership with in 2000, is upbeat at the prospects his men could claim a breakthrough victory.
“I was really happy with our game against Kolora, we played as close to a three-quarter game as we have all year,” he said.
“If I was brutally honest, there’s always going to be a lapse at some stage throughout a game, just with the amount of young fellas and inexperience we have.”
Everall has faith experience through the midfield — Ben Jansen, Shaun McDougall and Daniel Lumsden — will hold the Kangaroos in good stead.
“The good thing with our team is we do have a bit of experience in the middle of the ground, that does give our forwards some opportunity each game,” he said.
“I’ve mentioned a few times we always try and structure up to kick a score.
“It doesn’t always work but it’s important with a young and developing side you’ve got some ability to get a score on the board.”
Russells Creek included Brad Everall and Patrick O’Brien and promoted Stuart Shambrook among six changes, although Clarke brothers Allie and Ty will miss.
Timboon Demons also made six changes, regaining coach Brendan Hickey and Andrew Powell along with Lyndon Alsop and Brad Hallyburton from a trip away.
Hickey, whose men start slight favourites, said the Kangaroos contest was “the most winnable game we’ve had for two or three weeks at least”.
“But at the same time we realise Russells Creek are going to be setting themselves pretty hard for us as well,” he said.
Hickey said the Demons needed to turn the match into a low-scoring battle to give themselves every chance to win.
“We’ll have to work hard for four quarters. We don’t have the ability to whack on a few in a hurry.”