K rock Football

Tigers up for GFL’s biggest test

Colac co-coach Rowan McSparron. (Sports Media Image/Marcel Berens)

COLAC co-coach Rowan McSparron has labelled playing St Joseph’s at Drew Oval as local football’s biggest test ahead of Saturday’s blockbuster top-of-the-table clash that will likely decide top spot.

Joeys hold told spot by percentage from the Tigers, who are riding an 11-match winning streak and looking to claim the GFL minor premiership for the first time since joining the competition in 2001.

However, McSparron has played down the importance of earning the week off and a direct route into the second semi-final.

“I don’t think it really matters, to be honest,” he said.

“If you sat down at the start of the year, I think most clubs want to finish in the top-three, so that’s our objective.

“If we do finish on top, that will be OK. But, if not, it’s not going to be the end of the world.”

Colac handed St Joseph’s its first loss of the season when the two teams met back in Round 9.

The Tigers had too much run on the wide expanses of Central Reserve to run out 42-point winners.

But, for McSparron, it’s a result that carries little weight heading into Saturday’s meeting.

“To be perfectly honest, we got them at the right time,” he said. “They hadn’t lost a game since one of the early finals last year, so they were on an 11-game winning streak.

“We got them at home and we were just turning the corner and coming into some form, and they had a couple of key personnel out as well.

“We probably just got them at a really good time down at home.

“And the two grounds are completely different. The little things you can take out, they’re vastly different when you play from Central to Drew Reserve, that’s for sure.”

GFL: SATURDAY SPOTLIGHT – ROUND 17

The Tigers will be boosted by the return of Ethan Floyd (neck) and Dean Felekos (soreness), who both missed last week’s win over North Shore.

However, Tyler Murnane (ankle) is unlikely to be sighted prior to the finals, former captain Ryan Monaghan is set to play after suffering a poke in the eye last week, while Adam Garner has been named despite battling a toe issue.

“He just got jammed up in a tackle and we’ve got to assess him,” McSparron said.

“He’s moving around on it now. It’s just going to be what kind of action the VFL take with him.”

Otway Districts recruit Dylan Clissold has been named to make his debut after some strong performances in defence in the Tigers’ reserve grade team.

Twitter: @tom_king79
Email: [email protected]