The Animals will be looking for revenge in the Seniors when they travel to the other side of the Eastern Freeway to take on Manningham in what could be a potential finals preview, whilst the Seniors will look to replace Manningham into 3rd position as they look to take the season double against the Cobras.
The Reserves ran out deserved winners during the #PinkSaturday clash, and only sit 2 points behind Manningham in the standings, proving to be both a blessing and a curse.
It’s a two’s team on the rise and beginning to now string quality performances together as they flexed and knocked Canterbury off for over 100 points, the second straight week of owning a three figure margin.
However Manningham pose a much harder proposition, and will be looking to protect their ladder position and get revenge after the previous clash, one they feel aggrieved to have dropped.
For the Animals, Co-Captains Steve Jones and Adam Athorne will miss, with it leading to some noticeable shifts.
Cam Gardner, fresh off playing.well up front, will drop back into the back pocket, with Josh Webb also floating back on to a flank role. Reece Luehman start in the other pocket whilst James Rippon moves up to Centre Half Back with Fraser Walker shifting to Fullback.
Tom Shannon is moved forward to add some height, which sees Louis Fasolino take up a role in the middle of the park, with Harry Wines and Jason Schinck set to run amuck again on the vast Bulleen ground. They’ll be fed the ball by Max Hunt, with Alex Stokes rolling through the tall rotation.
Up front, Keiran Jenkins makes his return after a short injury stint, whilst Joe Anker will provide some new x-factor from the bench.
For the Seniors, the situation is vastly different. Manningham have skipped clear of Aquinas atop Division 3 and have left the rest of the section pondering how to shut them down.
Section leading goal kicker Kane Maghamez kicked 7 at Bennettswood Reserve, and was the sole difference between the two sides in what was a shootout for the ages. Maghamez has kicked 6 goals in 2 games since his return, and has looked like his domination of the league will contiunue.
Manningham pulled away at every change in round 5 to nab the 23 point win and whilst some would argue that they have improved to an even better state, so have Leoi’s.
Three straight wins, including statement wins against direct finals rivals in Westbourne and Canterbury see a good mood down by Deakin Uni.
Hugh Schaeche will miss the clash, but Ethan Phillips will slot into his midfield role after a stellar performance on his return last week for the twos. Brent Simons will swap with Paul Baranello to start in the middle, Bara will go forward. Michael Davis pushes Ray Kuhnell to the bench, as he looks to continue on from his fine performance in his 200th game last week as well.
Down back, Lawrence Virgo has been given the job of shutting down Maghamez, which sees Sam Argus moved to the bench, whilst Jonothan O’Connor’s return pushes Baxter Newbegin wide and Charlie Simpson to the bench.
Up front, just Paul Baranello is the only change to a Leos forward line that has begun to hum, and also pride the passion for the rest of the side to feed from. Harry Davis was the catalyst last week in kicking four as he reminded the rest of the league to not sleep on him, or his Animals side as they hurtle towards finals footy.