With a top-two spot a long shot after last week’s loss to Singleton, we entered this match looking to make up some ground on City to put us back in with a chance.
Our pressure was up from the outset and we managed to stifle a lot of their ball movement around stoppages while getting a lot of go-forward from our midfield, particularly Simon O’Brien who has been in scintillating form for some weeks now. However we were struggling to lock the footy inside forward 50 but finally got some reward when Mick Ryan kicked our first goal late in the quarter to keep us well in the game just a goal down at the break.
We maintained our pressure and made up some ground during the second quarter but a late goal gave them a seven-point half time buffer.
Our backline was holding up well with more-than-capable defensive newcomer Marcus DeLeur matching up well on one of their young danger-men. That he kicked three of his five goals after Marcus went off concussed points to Marcus’s versatility. The combination of the lack of quality of our forward entries and hence the ease with which the footy was then being rebounded finally took its toll in the third quarter as City came out and banged on four unanswered goals.
We perhaps should’ve lost by more than the final 38 points given they kicked nine behinds in the last quarter but our backline still held up courageously with the likes of Jared Campbell and Tom Lashlie.
Simon O’Brien was so good all day that he scooped our first “quaddie” for the season: Duke Hotel Coach’s Best, Ironbark Hill 1%er Award, Players’ Player and a post-match can.
Other post-match cans went` to Campbell and Lashlie however with Lashlie absent, Coach Bilkey stepped in during proceedings and gave Coach Tomlinson a can. Other good players on the day were Jack Pratt who constantly made his presence felt and Daniel Robson whose energy up forward didn’t go unnoticed.
With three weeks to go before finals, we’ll work on our forward entries and look to consolidate third spot so we’re hitting finals in the best possible form.
Cardiff: 5.7 – 37
Newcastle City: 10.15 – 75
Goals: M. Ryan, D. Robson, A. Wivell, I. Hughes, A. Clarke
Best Players: N. Tomlinson, S. O’Brien, J. Pratt, J. Campbell, T. Lashlie, D. Robson
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Game Day Photos courtesy of Geoff Robinson
** Women’s and Reserve Grade both had BYEs this week.