From the Coaches
Since the last newsletter we have played another six games with mixed results. Two excellent wins at home v Old Mentone and Bulleen Temp, a last quarter fade out at home against Prahran Assumption and three heavy losses away to the top three sides in Kew, Ormond & Old Geelong.
Our depth as a club has been tested most weeks with as many 36 senior players missing due to injury, suspension and/or unavailability. Some weeks there have been as many as nine changes to the Senior team which has made it difficult to build any momentum at all. At least we have been able to turn back the clock and watch The Prez don the boots and throw his weight around again! The Reserves have particularly suffered as a result of this as have the U/19's and Thorny and I would like to thank Pete and Butch together with Dave, Tony and Jez for their ongoing support in releasing players to the Senior side, putting the club's success ahead of their individual team's success.
However, even though the revolving door has been given a serious workout the Seniors have only played a handful of poor quarters over the entire season which is a significant achievement. We have also fielded very young sides with an average age each week of 21yo which augurs well for the future.
Congratulations to the following players who have made their Senior debuts since the last newsletter - Tim Nilsson and Anthony Guiliano (v Kew in Rd 7) and Kieran Hayes (Rd 11 v Old Geelong). Each of these lads acquitted themselves well and showed that they are comfortable playing at the Senior level.
With six games to go, we have a one game break on the relegation spot. It is imperative that we win at least another 2-3 games to ensure that we remain in Div 1 and who knows....a Top 4 spot is possible if we were to win all of our remaining games starting this week away at 4th placed St Mary's.
Finally, thanks again to all of the committee for their tireless work and ongoing support and thanks also to all of the match day helpers. Please make sure you put your hand up and help wherever you can on match day as well as continuing to support the club functions.
Cheers & Go Friars!
The drain on player stocks has continued with more injuries and absence taking its toll. The reserves have really struggling to even fill a team – let alone be competitive. The thrashing we received against Ormond was indicative of this with only 14 players available for selection on Thursday night. We cast the net and dragged in enough guys to make a team and this included three U/19’s, Norm Elliot and Butch. Not the perfect situation when playing the top team on their home ground. Well done to Norm who has strung a few together and is reaching peak form.
But through this difficult time I have been very proud of my core group of players who have fronted up and busted their guts each week. Dippa, Joey, the Pelosi twins, Cal, Crowey and others have been magnificent. Many have been carrying injuries like Dave Cardamone who played two weeks with an injured shoulder; he was running around like Darren Milane in 1990 and still managed to flatten one of the Bullants with one arm.
In spite of our lack of players, we have managed to play some good footy in patches, such as our first halves against the Oggers and Bulleen Temp. We could have been in front of the Oggers at half time if Righty had kicked straight. Hopefully we can finish off the season with a stronger team, get some wins and reset for next year.
Finally congratulations to Fonz who played his 150th game, a wonderful team man and a tough old buzzard on the field.
Under 19 Update
Thank goodness the break arrived when it did. The last 4 weeks has been a testing time for the Under 19s as we have only won 1 of our last 4 games to slip from 3rd to 5th on the ladder.
Our recent record is a result of a few factors – not taking our chances in games, injuries have been significant, unavailability of players and quality of opposition.
During this time though we have been able to give more game time to a number of players and a number of those have adapted well.
Our last game against Collegians even saw us draft in for the day four year 10 and 11 Friars for the WOCFC debut. Whilst it was a tough day at the office against Collegians, these boys were certainly up for it and hopefully this gives them a taste to come back and play again and be part of an exciting future for the club.
With 6 games to go, our destiny is in our own hands. It is up to all Under 19 players and coaches to try and win all of our remaining games to make finals and after that you just never know.