Tigers on prowl

August 11, 2017

Sam Martyn will return to the fold this weekend for Benalla after overcoming injury.

It is a case of win and you are in for Rochester with the Tigers aiming to secure a finals berth for the seventh straight year.

However, they will have to do it on the road tomorrow when they travel to face a Benalla outfit welcoming back Sam Martyn and Jimmy Martiniello.

‘‘It is going to be a tough game, they have a few key forwards up there that we will need to get a hold of,’’ Tigers coach James Flaherty said.

‘‘(Jarrod) Bannister and (Nick) Warnock act as real pillars for them, but we are backing in our defence to get the job done and hopefully secure a finals position.’’

The Tigers need just one win from their remaining three games to feature in September yet again and the playing coach would prefer to have his side’s fate sorted sooner rather than later.

‘‘Obviously that is why you play football, we want to win to secure a finals position, but if we don’t we still have time to cement ourselves,’’ Flaherty said.

Saints playing coach Luke Morgan was aware of what was at stake for his fifth-placed side, but was excited at welcoming back his experienced midfield duo.

‘‘Fate is in our hands and a win will help us push up the ladder towards the end of the season, while a loss can hurt us,’’ Morgan said.

‘‘If the boys get through training it will be good to have Sammy and Jimmy back into the fold, they will add plenty of experience and hopefully help our push into the finals.’’

Morgan’s side made the trek to Shepparton off the back of three straight victories and come Saturday evening the playing coach will hope his side is back on the winners’ list.

‘‘It was a pretty bad performance last week and one that we have moved on from,’’ Morgan said.

Tigers forward Steven Stroobants will be looking to challenge Bannister in the opposite forward 50 and Morgan was aware his side would need to curtail the influence of the midfielder-forward.

Bendigo Pioneers utility Will Hamilton will return for the Tigers, while Heath Aitken is in doubt.

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