NEAFL ROUND 8
Sunday, May 26, 3019
Redland Bombers (9th) v Southport Sharks (2nd)
Scottsdale Park, 1.30pm
The defending premier heads to Scottsdale Park to face Redland after its undefeated run came to an end last week against the GIANTS.
Southport fell to a strong side featuring 19 AFL-listed players last week, and would like to bounce back to the winners list in a winnable game against the ninth-placed Redland.
The Bombers have shown glimpses of their best so far this season, but glimpses haven’t been enough to get the points on the board as they sit near the bottom of the ladder with a 1-5 record.
Only a four-quarter performance will be enough to stop the star-studded Sharks as Redland looks to make a statement on its home turf.
Round 21, 2018: Southport 21.7 (133) d Redland 4.11 (35) at Fankhauser Reserve.
Round 11, 2018: Southport 15.15 (105) d Southport 13.5 (83) at Scottsdale Park
Round 1, 2018: Southport 13.1 (88) d Redland 10.6 (66) at Scottsdale Park.
1. What a season Craig Malone is having. The 26-year-old is in career-best form as he leads the competition for hit-outs and hit-outs to advantage. The top four highest hit-outs in a game this year belong to the 198cm and 115kg man mountain, but he needs more teammates standing up around him to capitalise on his dominance. The Bombers will rue countless missed opportunities last week, going inside 50 over 40 more times than the Students, but failing to convert in what was an eventual 20-point loss.
2. This match will present two vastly different forward lines this week. On one side is Southport, which is an unorthodox – yet effective – small forward line which generally relies on multiple contributors. Up the other end is star full-forward Matt Hammelmann, who leads the competition for average contested marks and is equal first on the overall goalkicking leaderboard. Interestingly, Southport and Redland both average 12 goals per game. It will be a matter of who can convert their chances, with Southport currently more efficient going forward.
3. It’s a tough time for the Bombers at the moment, who can find the footy but just can’t make the most of their opportunities. Momentum swings have been a killer for Redland this season, often conceding multiple goals at a time. Southport, too, aren’t quite operating at full steam this season and have escaped with a few close wins. Both coaches will be looking for a consistent effort from their players this week.
Daniel Fleming will make his long-awaited debut for Redland this week. A premiership player with Maroochydore and a former member of the Lions’ Academy, Fleming played seven games with the Lions last season and is hard-working and very fit.
STATS THAT MATTER
Southport are renowned for its contested possessions, currently the top ranked non-AFL club in the competition with an average of 143 per game. Redland is ranked 10th in the league in this statistical category, and will need to bridge the gap if they are a chance of an upset this week.
Southport by 20 points.
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