Blues ban­ish Mathoura for yet an­other sea­son

The Riverine Herald - - GAME ON - By Fraser Walker-Pearce

PI­COLA UNITED not only beat their lo­cal ri­vals on Satur­day, the Blues en­sured Mathoura would not be a fi­nals con­tender.

Pi­cola’s thump­ing 109-point vic­tory over the Tim­ber­cut­ters at their home ground means that the op­po­si­tion would need at least four wins from the re­main­ing six games.

And Mathoura is a side which has won just two games all year.

In con­trast, Pi­cola re­tains its firm grasp on a fi­nals berth, sit­ting on the third rung of the Pi­cola and Dis­trict Foot­ball League lad­der.

But they are still eight points adrift of sec­ond-placed De­niliquin Rovers, and 12 short of the as yet in­vin­ci­ble Waaia Bombers.

Pi­cola has a tough run for its final five games. In­clud­ing the bye in round 17, they have sixth-placed Ber­ri­gan, fol­lowed by fifth-placed Strath­mer­ton, then fourth-placed Blighty, and round out the nor­mal sea­son with ninth-placed Kata­matite.

Mathoura has a sim­i­larly dif­fi­cult end to its sea­son, fac­ing Blighty, Ber­ri­gan, Strath­mer­ton, Jer­ilderie, Kata­matite and Ren­nie.

Pi­cola coach John Var­coe said his side un­der­per­formed in the open­ing two quar­ters, and he knew they were ca­pa­ble of far bet­ter foot­ball.

He said fol­low­ing the long break Pi­cola be­gan to play bet­ter, but they will have to step that up again as they pre­pare for the Ber­ri­gan Saints.

‘‘They’re a dan­ger­ous team and have some dan­ger­ous play­ers,’’ Var­coe said.

‘‘We will have to con­tinue im­prov­ing from this game as we get ready for Ber­ri­gan, and we have to get a good start.

‘‘We had no se­ri­ous in­juries, just a cou­ple of knocks and corkies and things like that, but noth­ing too se­ri­ous,’’ he said.

Mathoura co-coach Jack Keogh said in some re­gards the re­sult was a step back­wards. But he was pleased in many other as­pects of the match.

‘‘We held them un­til the first half of the sec­ond quar­ter and ac­tu­ally de­cided to push back and work hard through their press, so that we could run through it,’’ he said.

Mathoura take on Blighty in the com­ing round, and Keogh said they’re in with a shout.

‘‘From what we’ve heard they have a few in­juries. So what we re­ally want is a four quar­ter ef­fort where we’re giv­ing it our all through­out.

‘‘If we do that then the score­board will look af­ter it­self,’’ he said.

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