Magpies to tackle ladder leader

Maryborough tackles the Bendigo Football League ladder leader, South Bendigo, tomorrow at the Queen Elizabeth Oval.

The Magpies will be on a high after trouncing Eaglehawk last weekend by 61 points but will be brought back to reality very early tomorrow.

The Bloods are a top combination and has had just a couple of defeats for the season, going down to Gisborne by just six points in early May and lost to Kangaroo Flat on June 13.

Since then South Bendigo has taken all before it and is coming off two huge victories over Strathfieldsaye and Kyneton and will be looking to make it three in a row.

Oozing talent on every line, the Bloods will show Maryborough no mercy on the wide, open spaces of the QEO.

Earlier in the season at Princes Park, the Bloods won by 10 goals but will be looking to improve on this tomorrow.

Key players for South are huge ruckman John Hardinge, coach Ricky Coburn, Brady Childs, Shaun Bergin and Gavin Bowles.

The Magpies will go into the contest without the in-form Matt Bilton who is a member of the Victorian Country Football League under 19 team which will play the Victorian Amateur Football Association on Sunday at St Kilda.

Another who will be missing is Liam Belcher who had his tonsils removed earlier this week. Belcher has become a very effective tagger and will be sorely missed.

Jayden Hind played a half with the reserves last weekend and he appears to be nearly back to his best and would be a likely replacement for Bilton.

Shane O’Connor and Tyson Macilwain will have their work cut out with Hardinge and the defence will need to be on its toes to try and stop the South forwards.

These include the likes of coach Shane Fisher, Bodie Malone, Cam Skinner (despite snagging two top goals last weekend), Adam Hurse and Michael Jennings.

Luke Bucknall loves the open spaces of the QEO and will give plenty of drive as he is a class act, while the in-form Martin Dell has been getting heaps of the footy through the middle.

Ash Noonan and Lachie Edwards were good in last week’s victory over the Hawks and both will get their share of the footy tomorrow.

Maryborough’s forward set up has reaped plenty of goals in recent matches with Dylan Clarkson and Matt Brown among the majors.

With back up support from the likes of champion Jamie Bond and the talented Cam Rinaldi, the Magpies have been looking good.

However, the Bloods are the top team in the competition and the present flag favourite and will prove a bit too classy for the Magpie outfit.

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