Kyabram’s continued dominance over the rest of its Goulburn Valley League rivals aside, this season’s finals series is shaping as one for the ages.
While the Bombers remain untouchable on top of the table after securing a 38th straight victory on Saturday, the rest of the top six is still taking shape with just one round remaining in the regular season.
Barring an almighty stumble against Mooroopna on Saturday, Shepparton will finish with a double chance and give itself the perfect opportunity to build on last season’s breakthrough semi-final berth with a free swing at the reigning premier in the first week of September.
For Euroa (third) and Seymour (fourth), the cutthroat action begins a week earlier with the two set to do battle at Kings Park on Saturday.
The winner will earn the much sought-after third spot, giving it a direct beeline to a double chance of its own if it can overcome Benalla next week.
Luke Morgan’s Saints will finish sixth no matter how they fare against Tatura in the final round after dropping three matches in a row.
But the title of this season’s dark horse lays firmly on the shoulders of James Flaherty’s men.
Rochester is fifth, but after capitulating under lights against Kyabram in round 14, it has proceeded to dominate Euroa (62-point win), Benalla (37) and Echuca (89) to cement its credentials as a legitimate challenger once more.
The Tigers are certainly roaring at the right time of the year after starting with a 1-4 record, lending more weight to Saturday’s fixture between the Magpies and Lions as both would surely rather take on a hurting Saints outfit than try to contend with last year’s losing grand finalist in a knockout final.
So strap yourselves in, because although we may be 19 weeks into this season, the real action is just about to begin.