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The Tweed Coast Tigers travelled to Kirra on Saturday for their first away game of the 2011 season and were cautious not to be jumped by an unknown Coolangatta / Gold Coast unit.
With 7 Premiership players out for this round including Captain Jai Purcell the Tigers were relying on a mix of youth and experience to get the job done, and that they did by a massive 21 goals.
A fantastic game from stand in Captain Jimmy Walle, who provided the Tigers with plenty of grunt and his 7 goal effort contributed on the scoreboard. From the first bounce giant ruckman Nathan Wilson took control and the Tigers were never threatened for the remainder of the game.
The return of star forward Ash Gemmill provided plenty of class to the forward line and with the two John’s (Big John & Little John) playing out of their skin up front, it was raining goals on the unorganized Gold Coast side. Ash bagged 5 goals in his return match and with more match time his skills will wreak havoc on the Summerland league opposition this season. Big John has trained the house down this pre –season and the veteran took hold of his opportunity up front with both hands to bag 4 goals. Little John a new youngster to the Tigers squad also shone up front taking quality overhead marks and popping up at the feet of the bigger men to sneak 4 goals of his own.
Quality performances across the park for the Tigers demonstrated the strength of the team as a unit with the backline allowing very few scoring opportunities for the Gold Coast led by Arty, Westy, Timmy, Popey and Josh Edwards constantly rebounding of the halfback line to turn defence into attack for the Tigers.
The Gold Coast side had several star players who at times showed what they could do and there was plenty of body contact, too let the Tigers know the Gold Coast were fair dinkum. However some astute coaching by Shags saw Benny given the role of tagging their quality onballer and like a dog with a bone Benny harassed the young Queensland League star to the point of frustration and then proceeded to kick 2 goals on him just to rub it in.
Probably the highlight of the game was young Sam Edwards performance, who in only his second game of AFL is showing signs of his future potential with silky skills and hardrunning leading to his first goal in AFL and the Tigers colours, and good to see the young fella wasn’t scared to show a bit of emotion with his post goal celebration. Congrats also to Aaron who played his first game for the Tigers and accounted for himself with a quality performance.
Considering the caliber of players out for this round it was another great performance by the Tigers across the park aptly led by stand in Captain Jimmy. Well done to the Tigers old heads who played full games and demonstrated why they are so valuable to the team and club including Herc, Pepe, Arty and Big John.
Credit must go to the Coolangatta / Gold Coast side who are struggling for numbers and continuity but played hard football for four quarters. If they can pick up a few players and get some training under their belt they will develop into a quality side.
Next week sees the Tigers at home for Rd 3 v the old foe Byron Magpies. The Magpies upset the fancied Ballina in Rd 2 and this Saturday’s clash will see the winner go clear at the top of the Summerland Table.
Thanks to all the Tigers coaching /support staff and supporters who travelled to Kirra.
Tigers 26.17 – 173 d Gold Coast 7.4 – 46
Tiger’s Goal Kickers:
Jimmy Wale – 7
Ash Gemmill – 5
Big John – 4
Little John – 4
Benny – 3
Sam Edwards – 1
Popey – 1
Herc – 1
Go the Tigers!
Please Note: This is the opinion of the author and may not represent the opinion of the club or its committee.