By SAM STRONG
Now that it’s past the mid-way point of the season, form and consistency are what five all age men’s teams are hoping to improve as the season heads towards the finals.
FINDING FORM: Bodalla’s Ben Smith and Andrew Jones corral Clyde United’s Nathaniel Vogel in a an early season all age men’s fixture at Surfside.
the mid-way point of the season, form and consistency are what five all age men’s teams are hoping to improve as the season heads towards the finals.
Last year’s runners-up, Clyde United, are in first place with nine wins, one win ahead of the Moruya Swans.
However, Moruya’s goal difference is 10 goals greater than Clyde.
United’s coach Paul Dillon said he wanted to see his side score more.
“I’d like to see us move the ball quicker and obviously score a lot more goals,” Dillon said.
“We’ve had a lot of chances we haven’t been able to convert yet.
“We have to get smarter about how we approach games coming into the finals series.”
Clyde lost to Moruya in the first round and Bodalla last week; its only losses of the season.
“A loss is good, we’ve been scraping through,” he said.
Dillon said his side wasn’t deterred by its opponents but that it needed to get its best team on the field.
“We haven’t hit our straps yet, it’s been difficult to get our starting 11 on the pitch,” he said.
“We have a squad of 18 and we’re doing okay (on top of the ladder).
“I’ll be happy once I get them all there.”
Moruya started its season well and coach John Selems attributed that to pre-season training sessions and social events.
However, the side had been a little “up and down” although Selems said he hoped the 6-nil win against a shorthanded Broulee side last weekend would spur his side into good form.
“They had a very good game on Sunday, mind you Broulee is a good side but finished with nine (players),” Selems said.
“They’re all fairly competent footballers and there are no weak links; it makes it harder to sub people.
“It’s now a matter of going on and carrying the form right to the end.”
Selems said the older players had taken former youth players under their wings.
“I thought it might be difficult for them but they’ve slotted in really well and it’s been nice to watch,” he said.
He said it was up to the senior players to push the team to improve as it began to focus on the finals.
“I’ve probably got four guys who can captain the team so there are enough bosses out there calling the shots,” he said.
“I want them to improve their style because I know they are capable.
“I think the odds of being minor premiers are a bit slim, but then again, if the winning continues we might go close.”
Both Dillon and Selems said the Bodalla Bulls, which sit in third place on 22 competition points, were a force to be reckoned with.
“Bodalla won last year and this is the time of they either gel or not; they’ve been a force all year,” Selems said.
“Bodalla have a core bunch of blokes and they are very good and skilful,” Dillon said.
“With Jesse (French) back, it’s complemented their midfield.
Batemans Bay has had a revival after it missed the semi-finals last season and sits in fourth place on 19 points.
With a few new recruits and increased playing experience, the Bay began well with a win against the Swans and a draw against Bodalla in the first month.
Over the past six games it’s only won against Broulee and Moruya Blue.
Captain Marc Stiller was confident of the team’s finals chances.
“We’ve had some good wins and had games we should have won,” Stiller said.
“We need more consistency; if we can do that we’ll be right up there at the end of the season.”
Broulee is fifth on the ladder and trails Batemans Bay by 10 points.
Coach Justin Di-Filippo said the Stingrays had a big turnover of players but they were starting to gel.
“We’ve had a few young guys come through and they’re starting to hit their straps,” Di-Filippo said.
“Now they’re getting used to playing against men; it’s going better lately.”
Di-Filippo said his side was aiming for the top four.
“We need to knock off the teams ahead of us,” he said.
“We’ll focus on those teams (Broulee and Bodalla) and test ourselves against the big guys, Clyde and Moruya.”
Moruya Blue is still chasing its elusive first points and may find it hard as the other five teams look to improve before the finals.
While finals aren’t in reach, repeating as the most entertaining team in the league could be a possibility.
Last Modified on 05/07/2015 18:12