Moun­tain Men lose key pair

Alpine Observer - - Sport -

BRIGHT faces a sea­son defin­ing month in Ovens and King foot­ball but will be with­out two of its best play­ers from the first half of the sea­son, for the next five weeks.

Brody Ri­cardi and Kane Miche­lini are over­seas un­til mid-July and will miss this week’s im­por­tant clash at Greta as well as key matchups against King Val­ley and Tar­rawingee in rounds 11 and 12.

While the Moun­tain Men will miss the pace of the two speedy on­ballers the re­turn of vet­eran tough-nut Steve Nightin­gale and pos­si­bly for­mer coach Ben Jones will be a boost to the side.

Nightin­gale has been un­avail­able for the first eight rounds of the sea­son but will face Greta on Satur­day while Jones has been among the best play­ers in the re­serves for the past two weeks.

Bright coach Paul Dal- bosco said the pair’s lead­er­ship and ball win­ning abil­ity will most likely be utilised in de­fence.

“My plan from the start of the year has been to play those two guys down back where it’s a bit eas­ier on their bod­ies,” Dal­bosco said.

“I’d rather put a bit of youth in the mid­field with Chad Martin po­ten­tially spend­ing more time in there with Brody and Kane away, as well as Nick How­ell who hasn’t gone through there much yet.

“Nutta (Nightin­gale) and Wingers (Jones) have ob­vi­ously been very good on­ballers for a long time but I think they can be more ben­e­fi­cial play­ing a role in de­fence with their abil­ity to read the play.”

The Moun­tain Men can re­place Greta in sixth place with vic­tory on Satur­day and will ex­pect to be 6-4 af­ter a road trip to Bon­nie Doon be­fore fac­ing sur­prise out­fit King Val­ley who are equal top.

Greta has lost its last four matches af­ter open­ing the sea­son with four straight vic­to­ries but Dal­bosco said his side won’t be tak­ing the Blues lightly de­spite most pun­dits tip­ping a Bright win.

“We’re both 4-4 and a closer look at both teams’ wins and losses prob­a­bly in­di­cates two fairly even sides so we’re ex­pect­ing a pretty tough game, es­pe­cially down there,” he said.

“We need to put four quar­ters to­gether to win.

“Af­ter Greta we’ve got the long jour­ney to Bon­nie Doon and then we’re at home to King Val­ley be­fore play­ing Tar­rawingee away.

“The next four weeks will be a big test for our foot­ball club and where we come out at the end of it is en­tirely up to the boys.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.