Manunda looking for a ton of possessions

Manunda will look to muster at least 100 more possessions than they did last weekend as they battle against Port Douglas tomorrow for a Cairns AFL grand final berth. The Hawks’ season averages took a beating against Cairns Saints in their 92 point loss last Saturday, with overall possessions the most startling statistic.

While it was obvious from the sidelines that Saints were dominating that aspect of the game, it was not until the tally was completed that the exact damage was revealed.

"General possession was down 100 on our season average, that was across the park," Hawks coach Paul Griffiths said. "It just showed that we need to be more accountable and I know a few of the boys are champing at the bit to make up for that effort."

Ball getting will be no easy job though, against a Crocs team that boasts a number of skilful and fearless leaders.

Daniel Smith has been at his bulldogging best again this season, while skipper Evan Hocking showed he was not afraid to put his body on the line last weekend when he was knocked out cold and stretchered from the field.

The fiery Kane Uebergang will not take a backward step, while Timmy Karpany loves winning the one percenters.

"That’s probably our strength and we need to bring that to the table this weekend," Crocs coach Andy Viola said.

But Griffiths believed his team had them covered for pace and wasn’t going to get bogged down worrying about the opposition. Griffiths tipped the fast legs of Lukas Ehlich, Fred Pittorino, Nathan Freebody and Damien Roe to come to the fore, while Luke Powell would also be a key in the ruck.

"It’s a simple game. It hasn’t changed in 120 years. Just win the ball, use our pace and want it more," he said. "I know our boys have that want."

Griffiths, though, admitted it would hurt to go out in straight sets after piloting the side to the minor premiership.

"It would be shattering; we have put in a lot of hard work, so it wouldn’t be good," he said.

Despite losing three clashes against Manunda this year, Crocs’ coach Viola felt his side had improved enough to be given every chance tomorrow.

"We’re coming at them and they are damaged goods at the moment (after last week’s loss)," he said. "It will be interesting to see how they can rebound from that."


Courtesy of The Cairns Post.


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