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By Geoff Newstead
The Mustangs ventured down to Rye for their final hitout before the real stuff begins. The weather conditions were a little different to the heat we endured at the prior two practice matches, with drizzly rain to start followed by a strong breeze.
The reserves again had good numbers with 31 players having a run. Kicking against the wind in the first term we did well to restrict them to one goal and then booted three majors ourselves when it was our turn in the second quarter. After an even third term, we kicked away in the last to record a solid 43 point victory.
The old boys again showed out with Luke Chivers controlling things around the middle while Scott Dimitriou again slotted through three goals. Cam Westwood has had a great pre-season and dominated the ruck, feeding the ball down to smalls in Aussie Sutherland, Dylan Taylor and Max Ward. Walter Cook was captain for the day and lead by example with plenty of possessions. The biggest nightmare for coach Richard now is how do you fit 35 players into 24 positions. Good luck.
The seniors came out without “Kid” Talevski who had to withdraw while “Sticks” Stephens was also rested to make sure he’s cherry ripe for Round 1.The wind was really blowing by this time, making scoring difficult for both sides. We had a two-goal lead at half time but then gradually drew away in the second half to go on and win by 31 points. Robert Johns and Aaron Beddoes were the only multiple goal kickers with two each. It was a fairly even team effort with everyone doing their bit when required. Josh Hammen and Jon Egan showed that they will be hard to get past at half back and Ben Dolan did a great job in the ruck in the absence of Sticks. Jai Jordan looks like he’s in for a good season and Matt Hassan will get better with each game.
It’s been a very good pre-season for the boys with both the seniors and reserves winning all three practice matches against quality opposition so hopefully this will carry on into the season proper as we take on Mulgrave on Saturday in Round 1. GO MUSTANGS !!!