Sport

Football exports | Local stars shine in Northern Territory Football League

By Aydin Payne

While many leading footballers in the region are preparing for a summer of cricket, a select few are continuing their football season in Australia's top end.

In the opening round of the Northern Territory Football League, five Goulburn Murray region exports faced off in a thriller.

Kyabram premiership player Tom Holman and Shepparton Swans livewire Jayden Clarke fronted up for Southern Districts in its clash against Nightcliff, pitting the Bomber and Swan up against four of their local football kin.

Nightcliff has the services of NTFL legend and Tongala footballer Cam Ilett, Nathalia premiership star Bailey Bell, Seymour's Kyle Winter-Irving and former Congupna junior and Shepparton United footballer Daniel Bowles.

Another United product was a member of the Nightcliff side, with Brodie Filo lining up for the Tigers.

And it was the local contingent, playing for Nightcliff which won.

The match was a see-sawing contest, with both sides trading blows up until the final siren, with the Tigers winning by nine points at TIO Stadium.

But it was Southern Districts which started the game strongly, with the Crocs holding one-point and 12-point leads at quarter-time and half-time respectively.

A dominant second half effort from Nightcliff helped the side across the line, as the Tigers booted six goals to three to hold on for a 13.10 (88) to 12.7 (79) win.

Winter-Irving and Bell (one goal) played superbly in their new colours, earning mentions in Nightcliff's better players, while Ilett (one) was his busy self and hit the scoreboard in the win.

But it was Filo who soared above the rest, booting two goals and earning best-afield honours for the Tigers.

Meanwhile, Clarke provided some spark for the Crocs in attack with his two majors a highlight in his first game.