Battle for third intensifies

August 25, 2017

Jason cole had plenty of the ball for the Lions.

Kings Park will play host to a gladiatorial battle worthy of a final tomorrow.

Not only does the mere sight of a Seymour and Euroa fixture excite crowds across the southern end of the Goulburn Valley, both clubs’ respective destinies will go on the line in the final round of the regular season.

The winner will secure the coveted third-placed finish on the table, as well as an elimination final date with an out-of-form Benalla, while the loser will be left to lick their wounds quickly before facing a red-hot Rochester.

Seymour playing coach Brent Colbert has his work cut out for him at the selection table this week, with Andrew Sturgess (Coburg VFL commitments), James Falcone (illness) and Jason Cole (hamstring) all set to return to the field tomorrow, while Hugh Robertson, Brandyn Grenfell and Matt O’Keefe should all recover from knocks of varying severity suffered last week against Kyabram in time to face the Magpies as well.

‘‘It was a pretty bruising contest last week, but all of our guys have recovered really well this week, so there are no (forced) outs,’’ Colbert said.

‘‘From a coaching point of view, there’s going to be three to four really unlucky players this week.’’

With Euroa and the Bombers known for differing game styles, Colbert was confident his charges could adjust.

‘‘Last week against Ky was a really contested and inside game, but this week Euroa are known for being able to spread really well,’’ he said.

‘‘The boys will definitely be able to change game style.’’

Whether his side could claim victory or not, Colbert was happy it had been presented with the opportunity to finish the regular season against two fellow finals aspirants.

‘‘For us, we want to be going into the finals series with a few tough games to harden ourselves up,’’ he said. ‘‘So no matter the result, we know we’re going in having two tough games, which is good.’’

The Magpies will also welcome key playmakers back into the fold.

Playing coach JD Hayes has recovered from a minor quadriceps tear, while Adam Tarrant (knee) and Matt Douglas (hamstring) are also raring to go.

‘‘We’re very excited, there’s a good feeling on the track,’’ Hayes said.

Hayes acknowledged his side’s strength was its pace and said it would use it as much as possible against the Lions.

‘‘We really want to take the game on, back ourselves, run and create,’’ Hayes said.

‘‘When we play fast, free-flowing footy we’re at our best.’’

The Magpies are also well aware of the significance the result will have on their season’s fortunes.

‘‘It’s a crucial game and our boys understand that,’’ Hayes said.

‘‘There’s a great rivalry between us and Seymour, (so it will be a great game).’’

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