Opinion

Best are on field

by
September 27, 2017

The News Team of the Year coach Paul Newman (Kyabram).

The News Team of the Year captain Lachie Smith (Kyabram).

It was Kyabram’s year yet again, so it is no surprise Bombers players dominate selection in The News Team of the Year.

Six Kyabram players have made the cut, while Paul Newman is the obvious choice as coach as he is still undefeated after two seasons in charge with a perfect 42-0 record.

Half of the defence is made up of Kyabram players, with Liam Barrett, Rhys Clark and Lachie Smith getting a nod for their skill and versatility.

Barrett has quietly gone about his business, shutting down some of the league’s best forwards.

In four games against Shepparton, Barrett kept Bears playmaker James Wong to a total of two goals.

Smith is one of the best players in country Victoria and is an automatic selection and he has the honour of being named captain.

While he does not captain Kyabram, he leads by example out on the field controlling the Bombers’ defence with the now-retired Josh Vick.

Rhys Clark is most likely off to play VFL next year and has been brilliant as a running defender.

This league is blessed with quality midfielders and it can be difficult to narrow it down to only a handful.

Euroa coach JD Hayes and Rochester star Nathan Marrone, who was best-on-ground in the Goulburn Valley’s interleague game, were pushed to a wing.

Seymour’s Brandyn Grenfell gets the gig as ruckman for his presence in the ruck and around the ground.

Grenfell can push forward and kick bags of goal.

Kyabram’s Jake Reeves was stiff to miss out, as was Shepparton’s Ash Holland, but the former missed a large part of the season due to illness and injury.

Shepparton’s Ben Davies, Kyabram’s Jordan Williams and dual Morrison medallist Simon Buckley make up the on-ball division under Grenfell.

Mansfield’s Brett Mahoney, Mooroopna’s Clint Riley and Seymour’s Ben Clifton make up the bench.

Kyabram pair Kayne Pettifer and Kyle Mueller led the goal-kicking this season, creating a dynamic duo up forward and were always threatening to opposition teams.

Saad Saad might have controversially retired from Seymour mid-year, but his 43 goals from nine goals was enough to get a spot in the pocket.

Jarrod Bannister (Benalla), Ruory Kirkby (Echuca) and Luke Smith (Shepparton) make up a formidable half-forward line.

Kyabram’s Billy Burstin was a possibility in the forward line, but missed five games through injury during the home-and-away season and only finished with 23 goals.

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