K rock Football

Coaches lean towards Tigers

Can Colac claim its second GFL premiership? (Sports Media Image/Marcel Berens)

RIVAL GFL coaches have favoured Colac to win its second GFL premiership on Saturday.

In a straw poll of the leaders of the 10 clubs watching on this weekend, seven have backed the Tigers to topple St Mary’s.

Two of the coaches to tip the Saints – Leopold’s Guy Morphet and Newtown & Chilwell’s Damien McMahon – saw first hand during the finals how destructive the men from Anthony Costa Oval can be.

St Mary’s will enter the clash as underdog as it looks to become just the second club, after Colac in 2014, to win a GFL senior premiership from fifth spot.

SHANE JACK (BELL PARK)

Winner & Margin: Colac by 8 points
AFL Vic Medal: Jarryn McCormack (Colac)

Jack says: “Colac has been the most consistent team all year.”

GREG MELLOR (GEELONG WEST)

Winner & Margin: Colac by 21 points
AFL Vic Medal: Jonathan Simpkin (Colac)

Mellor says: “If Colac can with the ball at the source, I think they have too much speed with players who also make good decisions with the ball in hand. Ahead of the ball they have multiple options and should capitalise on this ball movement.”

SIMON RIDDOCH (GROVEDALE)

Winner & Margin: Colac by 22 points
AFL Vic Medal: Jarryn McCormack (Colac)

Riddoch says: “Week off is a massive advantage. Will win centre and around the ground stoppages.”

SHAYNE STONE (LARA)

Winner & Margin: St Mary’s by 23 points
AFL Vic Medal: Ben Moloney (St Mary’s)

Stone says: “St Mary’s has some momentum and is in good form at the right time. Colac has only played the one game in three weeks going in, which is always a bit of an unknown. Will be a ripping game!”

GUY MORPHET (LEOPOLD)

Winner & Margin: St Mary’s by 8 points
AFL Vic Medal: Harry Benson (St Mary’s)

Morphet says: “Their outside speed is as good as I’ve seen this year. The ground will suit both team, but I think St Mary’s is riding a wave of confidence at the minute and will win a very close game.”

DAMIEN McMAHON (NEWTOWN & CHILWELL)

Winner & Margin: St Mary’s by 7 points
AFL Vic Medal: Jarryd Garner (St Mary’s)

McMahon says: “They have great momentum, great confidence, and the hunger to win. They also have good finals experience and plenty of ‘X’ factor. (Jarryd) Garner’s in the best form in the competition.”

MARK McDOWELL (NORTH SHORE)

Winner & Margin: Colac by 30 points
AFL Vic Medal: Campbell Floyd (Colac)

McDowell says: “Why do they win it? They tick all the boxes. They are better doing the tough stuff for each other – ranked No.1 for 1% stats, effective tackles and hardball gets. They are very disciplined with the least amount of 50m penalties (11). Elevated fitness from playing on a big ground 50 per cent of the season. The gameplan is frequently executed on a big ground. They are the best kicking side in the competition, and they are rested.”

DAVE FARRELL (SOUTH BARWON)

Winner & Margin: Colac by 14 points
AFL Vic Medal: Campbell Floyd (Colac)

Farrell says: “Both sides are in red-hot form and the only thing I can see splitting them is that Colac’s been he only side to trouble St Mary’s in the last 11 weeks. With both sides being up for so long through the middle and back end of the season, the mental freshen up for Colac could be as valuable as the physical rest they’ve had over the last few weeks.”

CHRIS CARLON (ST ALBANS)

Winner & Margin: Colac by 20 points
AFL Vic Medal: Kane Leersen (Colac)

Carlon says: “I think they have had the perfect build-up, and have a good spread of inside and outside players to do well on GMHBA Stadium.”

PAUL CARSON (ST JOSEPH’S)

Winner & Margin: Colac by 40 points
AFL Vic Medal: Jonathan Simpkin

Carson says: “Colac has been the best team all year. Should be fresh, have too many match-winners and polish on every line.”