Ea­gles, Gi­ants set for rip­per clash

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - Sport - BY DEAN LAW­SON

One of the most highly an­tic­i­pated games in Wim­mera Foot­ball League in the past decade will un­fold at War­rackn­abeal’s Anzac Park on Satur­day.

South­ern Mallee Gi­ants, the com­mu­nity com­bine that has taken all be­fore it since its cre­ation through a merger be­tween Beu­lah and Hopetoun, faces its biggest test.

The Gi­ants, al­ready a proven premier­ship force at Hor­sham District level, en­ter new ground again, this time against War­rack Ea­gles in Wim­mera Foot­ball League. Apart from es­tab­lish­ing a new po­si­tion in the re­gional foot­ball world this week­end, the Gi­ants ap­pear set to help cre­ate a fresh and most likely in­tense ri­valry that can only be good for foot­ball.

Many play­ers in both camps would have rubbed shoul­ders at sec­ondary school. Older foot­ball fol­low­ers would be look­ing for­ward to rekin­dling former South­ern Mallee league ri­val­ries that ex­isted be­tween Brim, part of the Ea­gles, and Beu­lah and Hopetoun.

Both sides have enor­mous in­cen­tive to do well this week­end. The Gi­ants ob­vi­ously want to get off strongly after shift­ing from Hor­sham District to Wim­mera ranks, while War­rack Ea­gles want to con­tinue what has been a steady push in the past cou­ple of years to­wards premier­ship con­tention.

Im­por­tantly, both camps are look­ing for­ward to a big Satur­day, which rep­re­sents a con­tin­u­a­tion of round one and is the only Wim­mera league game sched­uled for the week­end.

If we’re to be­lieve all the scut­tle­butt do­ing the rounds on the on the bound­ary of the Wim­mera and Mallee then the con­test ap­pears des­tined to at­tract one of the biggest crowds of the year.

The Ea­gles have lost a few play­ers but also gained a few and fans will watch with in­ter­est the in­flu­ence of Nick and Jake Peters and vet­eran Jeremy Clay­ton if all are avail­able.

They will also have a quick re­minder about the in­flu­ence a fully fit coach Ryan Mcken­zie and as­sis­tant coach Shan­non Ar­gall have for their team.

The Gi­ants are also ex­cited with their re­vamped list and al­though coach Cole­man Schache doesn’t have big Kain Robins in the goal-front this year, he has new­com­ers in­clud­ing goal-kicker Nick O’far­rell, ruck­man Reece Mc­nally and Jimmy Wray in the ac­tion this year.

And watch out for Schache him­self, along with Sam Wed­dell and Brock Or­val who will re­turn from Dar­win foot­ball cherry-ripe for the win­ter sea­son.

This con­test should be a game of rev­e­la­tions, providing early in­sight into the for­tunes of both camps.

But apart from that, fans can ex­pect a tremen­dous con­test with the se­niors sched­uled to kick off at 2.20pm.

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