Camperdown moves to 5-0 in gritty win over South Warrnambool

TURN AND RUN: Jack Williams of Camperdown runs with the ball as space opens up downfield on Saturday. Picture: Morgan Hancock .
TURN AND RUN: Jack Williams of Camperdown runs with the ball as space opens up downfield on Saturday. Picture: Morgan Hancock .

THEY’RE emerging Hampden league’s surprise packets – but Camperdown coach Phil Carse has warned against overconfidence despite an unbeaten start to the season.

Carse’s men notched their fifth-consecutive triumph on Saturday, stunning South Warrnambool by one straight kick to slide into third place.

On top of the world after many predicted a season of heartbreak – Camperdown is looming as an early finals contender.

While satisfied with a 5-0 start to the season, Carse hosed down hype and urged his men to focus on improvement leading into the interleague bye.

“We’re obviously rapt that we haven’t dropped a game yet, but we know there are a lot of areas we can improve in,” Carse told The Standard.

“We’re still focusing on those areas more so than the results themselves because there’s still a lot of the season to play.

“We can’t afford to be too happy with where we’re at, we know we’ve got a lot of games even before we can think about finals.”

South Warrnambool was competitive, but Camperdown wrestled back momentum in key moments in the 10.9 (69) to 9.9 (63) triumph.

Backmen Jack Williams, Jason Robinson and Luke O’Neil were among the Magpies best for their efforts driving the ball out of the back half.

Williams, listed with Werribee, said the Magpies’ defence was flying as one after a teething problems early on in the season.

“As a back six, we’ve slowly moved in together as more of a group,” the 22-year-old said.

“We were probably playing individually a bit at the start of the season but we’re really helping early other in the air.

“Billy Arnold has been real good at getting the ball to ground and Luke O’Neil has stood up this year. He’s a young fella but he’s put in a huge pre-season.

“He’s very underrated. People should show him more respect.

“With (Brendan) Richardson out, I was a bit worried we’d be a bit undersized with me and Billy playing tall but we’ve been good at getting the ball out and getting our run going.”

South Warrnambool assistant coach Justin Marris said the Roosters created enough chances but couldn’t execute with the match on the line.

“It was a very tight tussle. We thought both sides were pretty brave and contested pretty well and it was a good contest for both us and them,” he said.