Finals feud starts early in MGFL

THE match of the 18th and final round in the Mid Gippsland Football League will pit top five sides Yinnar and Mirboo North against one another for bragging rights prior to the start of finals next week.

Mirboo North holds the upper hand with a win over Yinnar in the first round, but history shows the Magpies have a better record overall when these two teams clash.

Both sides have occupied their spot in the finals frame for most of the season with Mirboo North holding down second position for eight weeks while Yinnar has been in fourth since round 10.

The Tigers could drop from second if beaten but it’s only academic as they will play in next week’s qualifying final against Yallourn-Yallourn North regardless.

Yinnar will finish fifth – win, lose or draw – and play Morwell East in the elimination final on Sunday week.

BOOLARRA and Trafalgar will meet for the 100th time in an historic match between two teams wrapping up disappointing seasons.

Their first meeting was on 31 May, 1969 when Trafalgar won 8.10 (58) to Boolarra’s 2.1 (13).

Since then the Bloods have been the more powerful club but Boolarra defeated them in round nine this season.

It’s going to be a matter of pride as Boolarra is eighth and Trafalgar ninth; positions that will not change regardless of the outcome.

Boolarra has struggled this season with just four wins and no fourths side, which has curtailed the flow of juniors seeping into the upper grades.

In a slice of good news for the Dees Shane Paynter has been reappointed as senior coach for next season.

The Bloods have had their worst ever year with multiple record scores kicked against them, but they did have two wins and a draw along the way.

Boolarra should win but it will be a competitive match provided both teams are at full strength.

NEWBOROUGH will be going for its 16th successive win in a tremendous season.

The Dogs have been on a tear, posting record scores all year, with their last loss coming in the second round to Yinnar.

Top of the table since round seven, Newborough has been out in front for 10 weeks and on form will finish the season as minor premiers with a win over Yarragon.

The Panthers have shown they can match it with most teams and with their five wins have beaten last year’s tally.

It has been a difficult season for the Panthers with no home ground and no juniors, but with the help of the other nine clubs they have made the most of it.

The club’s reserves have triumphed through adversity and made it to the finals after finishing fifth.

Newborough will win but can expect lively competition in Yarragon’s last match of the season.

Yallourn-Yallourn North and Morwell East will contest a good pressure match in the build-up to finals next week.

The Bombers have had a reasonable season with four teams in the finals.

The seniors will finish third and Morwell East fifth, so this game has no bearing on ladder positions.

YYN will go in as favourite after winning the previous match against the East by 42 points.

Morwell East’s first half of the season was its best, when it peaked at second position in rounds seven and eight, but by round 10 the Hawks had plummeted to fifth where they have remained for seven weeks.

YYN’s form has been consistent, holding down second in rounds four and nine, before a drop to third which it has held for eight weeks.

Bombers Dean MacDonald (seniors) and David Ivey (reserves) look like taking out the goal kicking awards at the conclusion of the home and away calendar.

ANOTHER two teams that have underperformed this season will collide when Thorpdale hosts Hill End.

The Blues had a chance mid term to make the final five but indifferent form cost them their shot.

They will finish the best team out of the bottom five but it will be little consolation for a side aiming higher.

Hill End went 10 games before breaking through for a win and just a fortnight ago scored a second.

It will be the final game for the Thorpdale club this season but Hill End will go on with their thirds represented in the finals.