NEAFL ROUND 17
Saturday, July 27, 2019
NT Thunder (10th) v Redland Bombers (9th)
TIO Traeger Park, 6pm
These two sides may be at the bottom of the ladder but both will carry opposing form heading into this Round 17 clash at TIO Traeger Park in Alice.
NT Thunder, coming off one of its’ worst losses in NEAFL history, are desperate to regain some pride against a side they have traditionally had the measure over.
Redland, however, head into this clash having come within three points of defending premier, and second-placed side in Southport last week. Having missed several chances for an upset victory, the Bombers will go into this week knowing they have to play four quarters of good footy.
Whilst this match has little bearing on finals, expect a tough, close encounter as both teams battle it out to avoid the wooden spoon.
Round 9, 2019: Redland 20.12 (132) d NT Thunder 16.15 (111)
at TIO Stadium
Round 4, 2019: NT Thunder 18.15 (123) d Redland 14.14 (98) at Scottsdale Park
Round 19, 2018: NT Thunder 17.1 (112) d Redland 13.16 (94) at TIO Stadium
1. It was a day to forget for NT Thunder last week when they were thrashed by Canberra by 145 points at UNSW Canberra Oval. A combination of injury, two late changes and player availability meant Thunder went into the match with one less player than the Demons, and their inexperience showed as the margin reached 34 points by quarter-time and only got worse from there. The positive for NT Thunder is they return home this week to take on their old foes, and they’ll have an opportunity to turn a negative into a positive with an increased effort.
2. It’s been a case of so close, yet so far for Redland in season 2019 with another close loss last week. Not only was it the second time this season the Bombers have got within six points of Southport, but it was their fourth loss by 10 points or less. In all of those matches the Bombers’ were the underdogs, so it will be interesting to see how they handle the ‘favourites’ tag heading into a clash against the bottom-placed side.
3. If there is one player who relishes playing against NT Thunder, it is NEAFL leading goalkicker Matt Hammelmann. The former Brisbane Lion has booted 13 goals from the past two matches against NT, but his record in the Territory is even more damaging. His nine-goal effort to win the ANZAC Medal in 2018 in Alice Springs was the stuff of legend, and Hammelmann backed it up with another nine-goal haul in Darwin in Round 9 this year.
One of the shining lights for NT Thunder this season has been the emergence of some its young talent, including defender Kieren Parnell and midfielder Brodie Carroll. Originally from Katherine, 21-year-old Carroll is in his first season with NT Thunder and is a two-time NTFL Rising Star nominee with Waratah. Carroll was the top disposal winner for NT last week with 28, plus seven tackles and six rebound 50s as he continues to grow at NEAFL level.
STATS THAT MATTER
Redland has struggled to beat NT Thunder in the NEAFL. Whilst the ledger stands at 1-1 in 2019, NT Thunder holds the overall win-loss record over Redland 17-4. The Bombers will take some confidence, however, from their record in Alice Springs, with three of their four wins against Thunder coming at Traeger Park.
Redland in a close one. Bombers by six points.
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