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Central win in trying conditions

By Dale Tonkin

Both teams started with indecisions and poor execution, mainly due to trying conditions.

West had most of the play early and wreaked some reward with Sutton hitting up Savage for the first goal for the term.

Central responded swiftly with a soccer goal inside the goal square. Just viewing the game early, Central were working extremely hard into the breeze but looked up to the challenge.

Central’s ability to run the ball into the breeze was first class.

The pleasing thing for the Westies was the fact they were hitting up to the ball, lowering their eyes and hitting the short option with effect.

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Central were strong in defence as they repelled West’s offence on numerous occasions.

If Central kept up the same work rate when going with the breeze, they would be extremely damaging.

West’s Savage stepped up again to hit the scoreboard for his second for the term.

I just thought Central’s work rate was higher than West’s. West’s Andruszkiewicz was hitting up options effectively which was good to see as I have been a critic of his efficiency in the past.

West had kicked two goals for the term and Central had kicked one for the term it was quite difficult to give the reader an accurate score, as the scoreboard wasn’t working, but the first term ended with West a few points up.

It’s fair to say, due to the conditions, the game wasn’t reaching great heights.

Both teams turned the ball over with poor decision making and disposal both by foot and hands.

Central had a real chance at goal early with a dribble kick, but the umpire deemed it a point, it was pretty darn close from where I was sitting, but I will give the goal umpire the benefit of doubt on that one.

West took the ball up the other end and worked it into the breeze to kick the first major for the term.

Central replied quickly to make two majors for the game and West three majors.

Central probably had six points up to this stage and the scores would have been very close if not tied going into the half time break.

Both teams tried to work their way through the trying conditions.

Central continued the quarter with a high work rate into the breeze.

I thought West’s ability to compose themselves and hit the short option was first class, but it was Central that drew first blood with pure work rate as their defence continually stood up.

The game was really difficult for both teams to play in as the conditions grew more and more difficult to handle with and against the breeze.

To the players’ credit, they were all worked very hard.

It was a case of who can grind it out and who wanted it more.

Central was playing for a finals berth and the West was fighting not to win a wooden spoon. As the term wore on, it started to appear that Central’s work rate was higher than West’s.

It appeared Central would be playing finals this year.

As I have been saying all year, West’s fitness base is just not there and it’s not as if they’re not trying, they just get out worked inside and around the contest.

The game was pretty tight overall, I just thought Central had a superior work rate.

The contest was fairly even. West hit the scoreboard early into the breeze, but it was a case of whatever West threw at Central, they would reply with interest.

Central kicked the next two goals in a row, which effectively won them the game.

The game continued with Central’s excellent defensive game that quickly turned defence into offence.

The balance between the two teams today was very important.

I feel for West, as they tried hard today but they needed to extend themselves for longer periods of time.

It is very apparent that West may well win the spoon this year as Central have earned the privilege to play in the finals.

I can’t really see any change to the status of play from now until the end of the season. Central went on to keep the pressure on West as they ran out 14 point winners in what was a very trying day for all the players.

Final score — Central 6.13 (49), West 5.5 (35)

Best players

Central: Campbell, Anderson, DeVoy, Crozier and Westaway

West: Savage, King, Hocking, McEvoy and Sutton

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