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GVL Data | Can the Lions curtail Euroa’s forward line firepower?

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Firepower: Erish Uthayakumar is a crucial cog in Euroa’s potent forward line.

Following Saturday’s crushing 20-point loss to Mooroopna, it is now do-or-die for Seymour as its finals hopes hang by a thread.

With just three games remaining in the home-and-away seasons, the Lions simply must come away with three wins, or they will be spending September on the beaches of Bali or slopes of Mount Buller rather than in the heat of finals battle.

So with the stakes raised to their absolute peak, how fitting that Seymour begins this season-defining block with a clash against traditional rival Euroa.

Sitting second on the ladder with an imposing percentage of 187.29, Euroa has been a top flight contender all season long, and will without doubt have the intention of bringing the Lions’ season to an abrupt halt.

So which areas will Seymour coach Ben Davey have to focus on when it comes to curtailing its red-hot rival?

Well, when looking at the Magpies, the eye is immediately drawn to their cast of stars, especially those situated forward of the ball.

Sporting an exciting mix of talls and smalls, Euroa’s attacking set-up is the envy of the competition, with three of its players currently sitting in the top 10 of the league’s goal-kicking list — the only team with such representation at the top end of the tally.

Key stats

Goulburn Valley League top 10 goal-kickers

1. Chris Nield (Mooroopna): 62

2. Ruory Kirkby (Echuca): 57

3. Jett Trotter (Euroa): 38

4. Steven Stroobants (Rochester): 36

5. Tristan Davies (Euroa): 35

6. Mitch Cricelli (Rochester): 35

7. Will Foster (Mansfield): 35

8. Ben Christopher (Mansfield): 34

9. Erish Uthayakumar (Euroa): 33

10. Anthony Andronaco (Shepparton): 32

Livewire small Jett Trotter leads the way with 38 majors, with talls Tristan Davies (35) and Erish Uthayakumar (33) closely following.

When the two sides met back in round three, this trio was rightly at the forefront for the black and white, combining for eight goals in what was a clinical 28-point victory at Memorial Oval.

Uthayakumar and Davies were the stars in front of the sticks that day, booting three apiece, while Trotter was at his dangerous best across half-forward, collecting 17 disposals and kicking two goals.

But it isn’t just these three Davey and the Lions’ brainstrust will have to worry about.

Since that round three clash, Euroa has experimented in putting Ben Giobbi forward and seen some great results, with the midfield maestro booting 21 goals from his past 10 games.

This includes two hauls of five, with the first coming in round nine against Mansfield and the second in last week’s big win over Shepparton United.

At a glance

Ben Giobbi’s day out in Mansfield

Goals: 5

Disposals: 21

Inside 50s: 3

Marks: 3

Score assists: 2

Throw in the pressure of unassuming forward Jack McKernan, who has also contributed with 20 goals in 2022, and the Lions’ defence will certainly have its hands full come Saturday afternoon.