Recent Articles in Lead up to Grand Final

LPFL: Skipton a chance for back-to-back flags

BY RHYS BREHAUT

30 Aug, 2010 09:50 AM

SKIPTON’S chance of back-to-back Lexton Plains Football

League flags is still a reality.

The Emus will get another shot at Lexton in the Kingprint LPFL’s last grand final at Eureka Stadium on Saturday.

It will be a third consecutive premiership play-off for Skipton, and its ninth since the LPFL was formed in 1999.

The Emus have won four flags, while Lexton is in its first grand final in the competition.

Skipton came from behind at three-quarter time to defeat

Rokewood-Corindhap by 18 points in the preliminary final at Linton on Saturday, 8.10 (58) to 6.4 (40).

The Grasshoppers led by five points at the last change after a strong third term, but the final period was fully controlled by Skipton, turning around the third quarter pattern.

Emu Stefan Pye booted his second goal for the match after a flurry of four Skipton behinds to put his team in front with about 15 minutes to play.

Three minutes later, after another Emu behind, an errant

kick-in fell into the arms of Danny George who split the sticks to give Skipton what turned out to be an unassailable lead.

Some undisciplined acts in the third term, however, threatened to derail Skipton’s premiership aspirations.

Two Grasshopper goals without the ball being bounced and Damien Larkin being put on report were not in the plan of coach Tim McKay, but he was able to right the

ship and get his team into that one day in September.

McKay said Skipton really focused on the third term.

‘‘To play such unaccountable and undisciplined footy as we did (in the third quarter) was really disappointing.

‘‘The last quarter showed great spirit from the boys and there is a bit of belief that might have been missing over the past couple of weeks,’’ he said.

Rokewood-Corindhap did not give up at any stage, but lack of usual rotations off the bench did not help.

‘‘We lost Stuart Matheson and Tim Fulton in the first half, and Simon Bogie (after a heavy clash in the third term),’’ Grasshoppers coach Tom Mullane-Grant said.

‘‘Our boys put in a valiant effort.

We were winning hard ball after hard ball, pushing the ball forward.

‘‘I was very proud of the boys, but in the end Skipton was just too good,’’ he said.

LPFL: Skipton a chance for back-to-back flags

BY RHYS BREHAUT

30 Aug, 2010 09:50 AM

SKIPTON’S chance of back-to-back Lexton Plains Football

League flags is still a reality.

The Emus will get another shot at Lexton in the Kingprint LPFL’s last grand final at Eureka Stadium on Saturday.

It will be a third consecutive premiership play-off for Skipton, and its ninth since the LPFL was formed in 1999.

The Emus have won four flags, while Lexton is in its first grand final in the competition.

Skipton came from behind at three-quarter time to defeat

Rokewood-Corindhap by 18 points in the preliminary final at Linton on Saturday, 8.10 (58) to 6.4 (40).

The Grasshoppers led by five points at the last change after a strong third term, but the final period was fully controlled by Skipton, turning around the third quarter pattern.

Emu Stefan Pye booted his second goal for the match after a flurry of four Skipton behinds to put his team in front with about 15 minutes to play.

Three minutes later, after another Emu behind, an errant

kick-in fell into the arms of Danny George who split the sticks to give Skipton what turned out to be an unassailable lead.

Some undisciplined acts in the third term, however, threatened to derail Skipton’s premiership aspirations.

Two Grasshopper goals without the ball being bounced and Damien Larkin being put on report were not in the plan of coach Tim McKay, but he was able to right the

ship and get his team into that one day in September.

McKay said Skipton really focused on the third term.

‘‘To play such unaccountable and undisciplined footy as we did (in the third quarter) was really disappointing.

‘‘The last quarter showed great spirit from the boys and there is a bit of belief that might have been missing over the past couple of weeks,’’ he said.

Rokewood-Corindhap did not give up at any stage, but lack of usual rotations off the bench did not help.

‘‘We lost Stuart Matheson and Tim Fulton in the first half, and Simon Bogie (after a heavy clash in the third term),’’ Grasshoppers coach Tom Mullane-Grant said.

‘‘Our boys put in a valiant effort.

We were winning hard ball after hard ball, pushing the ball forward.

‘‘I was very proud of the boys, but in the end Skipton was just too good,’’ he said.

LPFL: Skipton's Larkin cleared for grand final

BY GAVIN MCGRATH

30 Aug, 2010 11:46 PM

SKIPTON premiership player Damien Larkin is free to play in this Saturday's Lexton Plains Football League grand final after he was found not guilty of insulting an umpire last night.

The Ballarat Central Independent Tribunal ruled there was not sufficient evidence to find Larkin guilty of the charge of insulting umpire Paul Clark, who was unable to attend last night's hearing due to a prior commitment.

In an affidavit provided to the tribunal, Clark said Larkin had called him a "cheat" after Rokewood-Corindhap coach Tom Mullane-Grant was awarded back-to-back free kicks after a clash with Larkin.

The 23-year-old Skipton player last night said the insult had been directed at Mullane-Grant for "taking a dive", and not the umpire.

"I made contact with Tom Mullane-Grant and he went down," Larkin admitted.

"I turned to him and said `you're a cheat' for taking a dive . It was definitely directed towards the player."

In Clark's affidavit, the umpire insisted he had an uninterrupted view and that he was "of the clear opinion that the communication was directed at me by his contact".

Under heavy cross-examination Larkin said he did not see the umpire at the time of the incident and was not aware he had been reported until after the game.

In a twist, Larkin will now be able to play against his brother Dale's team Lexton in the grand final.

Dale Larkin found his way to the Tigers, following a brief stint at Dunolly, after he was dropped by Skipton for last year's LPFL grand final after playing every home and away match of the season. Damien was part of that premiership team.

Damien Larkin said it was likely the pair would be direct opponents on Saturday. "I was feeling relieved (last night). I felt I was going to get off the charge but you never know," he said.

"We're pretty close so Dale wished me luck for the hearing.

"We played against each other twice during the season as direct opponents. We're one and one in terms of wins. He'd think he beat me both times. I'd say I beat him. Mum would say we're 50-50."

"On the day, as far as I'm concerned Dale will be just another bloke in a black and yellow jumper, but I think it will be pretty tough for Mum."

Daylesford key position player Joel Adams has also avoided missing a grand final after he was found not guilty of engaging in rough conduct against Hepburn's Craig Leehane. Adams was reported for late contact on Leehane after the Hepburn player took the mark.

The controlling umpire only penalised Adams with a 50m penalty, with the non-controlling umpire laying the report.

With Daylesford earning the week off with its victory over Hepburn, any suspension would have seen Adams missing the following weekend's Central Highlands Football League grand final against the winner of this weekend's preliminary final between Hepburn and Buninyong.

LPFL grand final: Last chance for Lexton

01 Sep, 2010 09:53 AM

HUGH Briody felt tingles race up the back of his neck as he sung the Lexton song after the Lexton Plains Football League second semi-final.

Swamped by Tigers fans for the first time in a long time,

he knew his team was in for something really special.

Lexton was through to its first, and last, Kingprint LPFL

grand final.

On Saturday, Briody will be the only Tiger on ground to

have played in the club’s last grand final appearance —

that was in 1998 and ironically the last season of the Lexton Football League.

Teammate Dave Impey was also in the Tigers’ runner-up

finish, but will miss this season’s grand final after a season plagued by an ankle injury.

Briody quipped that while it had not been a long time

between drinks at Lexton, the Tigers had waited a long time for success.

The 36-year-old half-back flanker was thankful Tigers’

coach Eamon Johnson had convinced him to play on for

one more year.

‘‘This is pretty exciting,’’ Briody said.

‘‘I nearly had the boots hung up at the start of the year. ‘‘But there’s always one last chance — that’s what you’re all playing for, a premiership, and I’m still to get one.’’

Briody was dropped for the 1992 grand final when the

Tigers’ last won a flag.

He was one of the ‘‘young ones’’ back then.

Now in the twilight of his playing journey, Briody has

been through his share of highs and lows and an ‘‘unbelievable’’ turnover in teammates.

Briody said the difference the past two seasons had been

Johnson’s tutelage.

‘‘He’s got us working as a team instead of individuals,’’ Briody said.

‘‘We’ve been helping each other out and seem pretty fit.

‘‘We are all playing together and clicking well.

‘‘The last couple of weeks, everyone has taken that next

step up in training and their game — they haven’t been

asked to, they just did.’’

The home-grown Tiger said there had been a bit of a buzz about Lexton since the second semi-final win against Skipton, who the Tigers will face in the grand final.

Briody said most locals were interested in the game, but were trying to keep a lid on the excitement until match

day.

This time Lexton — the town and club — wants to win

the last flag up for grabs in a league, going one step further than the Lexton league final of 1998.

Briody said there was pressure to win, especially in a

league sharing the town’s name.

He relished the challenge.

‘‘There’s pressure for sure,’’ Briody said.

‘‘Put as much pressure on as you like.

‘‘I think it will make us want it more,’’ he said.




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