Blues back in mix

August 12, 2017

Fresh:Nathan Hicks will return to the Numurkah line up after the bye came at a handy time for ahost of Blues players.

Barring a thrilling draw, either Numurkah or Mulwala will lose a second consecutive game for the first time this season today.

With the Murray Football League entering its finals series in just three weeks time, it is a position neither club wants to be in.

‘‘We just want to get back on the horse, we got bucked off it last game against Barooga,’’ Numurkah co-coach Chris O’Dwyer said.

‘‘The advantage of losing though was that it allowed us to dissect our own game and look at where we’ve improved and where we might have dropped off.

‘‘So we’ll look at getting back to the basics, dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s.’’

The inclusion of a raft of stars will help the Blues, with Beau McKeown, Nathan Hicks, Nick Fothergill and Ben Gunning all set to return to the field thanks to a well-timed break.

‘‘It will be a pretty normal side for us,’’ O’Dwyer said.

‘‘There will be a few disappointed boys who miss out but that’s not a bad situation to be in as a club.

‘‘If we can just look after this week then the rest will look after itself.’’

O’Dwyer knows one key to a Numurkah victory will be shutting down Mulwala forward Ash Froud.

‘‘We’ve got two to three blokes who could be suited to play on him,’’ he said.

‘‘But it doesn’t matter if we had Steven Silvagni on him, if the supply is good and on a silver platter then he will still kick goals.

‘‘Whoever does get the job will have to be on their toes, but it will come down to how hard the midfield works to put theirs under pressure.’’

Froud, who sits on 93 goals for the year, has battled soreness in recent weeks, but Mulwala coach Michael Tout hoped the bye has helped his star recover.

‘‘Froudy has been battling a bit, his knee has been giving him a bit of grief,’’ he said.

‘‘He hurt it against Cobram (in round 14) and has been carrying it since, he just didn’t have that explosiveness but hopefully he’s all right now.’’

The Lions are likely to feature heavily in September this season, but Tout has tried to steer his young charges clear of any talk of it.

‘‘We haven’t really spoken about it,’’ he said.

‘‘With a young crew you try not to put too much pressure on them with talk of finals.

‘‘I personally think they (Numurkah) are the side to beat this year so it will be a good game.’’

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