TERANG Mortlake has been bolstered with the return of some forward power for tomorrow’s Super Saturday showdown against the undefeated Koroit at Terang Recreation Reserve.
The Bloods last night made three changes to the side that suffered a 15-point loss to Warrnambool last week. They welcomed back key forwards Joel Crawley, Ryan O’Connor and talented half-back James Reicha, who were all unavailable last week.
But gun forward/ruckman Steve Staunton again couldn’t be considered because of a groin injury.
Coach Shane Threlfall expects Staunton to be fit for next week’s game against North Warrnambool Eagles.
Gus Pomorin, Jarryd Hay and Joseph Arundell have been omitted.
Koroit named ruckman Nathan Meade in its squad after the big man returned from overseas.
Coach Chris McLaren will finalise the side after training tonight, with under 18 player Tom Mugavin and Aaron Moyne also added to the 21 that defeated North Warrnambool last week.
Moyne was a late withdrawal from the team last Sunday, having injured an ankle at training on the Thursday night, but he is fit.
The Saints will be without assistant coach Karl Dwyer, who is unavailable, and a question mark remains over defender Dallas Mooney, who sat out the second half last week with an ankle injury.
Warrnambool promoted teenage gun Liam Hoy for his senior debut against Port Fairy at Gardens Oval tomorrow.
Hoy, a member of the state under 16 side, turned in an impressive practice match performance against Lara and with a break in his state commitments, has been picked to play on a wing or across half-forward with the Blues.
He and lead-up forward Corey McLaren were promoted after the Blues lost star key position player Sam Cowling (groin) and half-back Kayne O’Brien (ankle) from the side that defeated Terang Mortlake last week.
Port Fairy will finalise its team tonight. However, on the incoming list are Jay Solomon and Sam Dwyer.
Casualties from last weekend’s game against Camperdown, Nick Sheehan (thigh) and half-back Lachie Young (knocked out), have not bounced back in time for tomorrow’s match.
South Warrnambool has named an extended squad for tomorrow’s game against Camperdown, after training yesterday morning. The Roosters are waiting on the fitness of a couple of players, including Danny Finn, who missed last week’s game with a calf niggle.
South used yesterday’s training session to work on kicking long as the first option.
“Training was good,” coach Matthew Peake said.
“The conditions were very good considering it was meant to be pouring with rain.
“It was good to get training out of the way so everyone could go and enjoy the rest of the day.”
Camperdown welcomes back Sam Chapman from injury, allowing Jake Dowell to concentrate on under 18s.
Magpies coach Bernard Moloney said Chapman’s extended break was probably longer than required, but ensured the gun midfielder was properly rested.
Cobden has secured the services of yet another North Ballarat Rooster, with Tom Watson released to return for the Bombers this weekend against North Warrnambool Eagles.
The midfielder replaces Michael Salmon and will play alongside his Roosters teammate Levi Dare.
“We always support them going up there (to the VFL),” Cobden coach Wayne Robertson said.
“But we love it when they come back.”
North Warrnambool Eagles has made four changes, including the anticipated returns of gun teenage midfielders Tom Smith (shoulder) and Andy McMeel (ankle).
Smith will make his season debut, while McMeel has missed the past two rounds.
Among the outgoing Eagles is Michael Darmody, who has been omitted.