Carey Park and Collie raring to go in Anzac clash

Stuart McGuckinSouth Western Times
Mat Michael will be a key target as Collie Eagles look to kick a winning score.
Camera IconMat Michael will be a key target as Collie Eagles look to kick a winning score. Credit: Stuart McGuckin

The SWFL’s traditional Anzac Day clash between Carey Park and Collie Eagles looms as a winnable game for both sides on Saturday afternoon.

An impressive round one Panthers’ victory against the defending premiers was soon forgotten following a 103-point thumping at the hands of Eaton a fortnight ago.

Panthers’ coach Richard Barnard said the players had conducted a strong review after the loss.

“We need to get back to the basics, play the blue-collar brand of footy we are known for and work hard all game,” he said.

“The players will put in place a few adjustment on the weekend.

“What we did learn is that one win doesn’t make a season, just as one loss doesn’t make a season – we just need to get back on the horse.”

He identified Jeff Smith and Mat Michael as key players he would look to limit.

“We’ve got a couple of things that we can put in place to quell their influence a little bit,” he said.

The Eagles, who bore the full brunt of a similar Boomers shellacking in round one, came up just short against the Tigers in round two and will need to overcome injuries to key players this weekend.

Collie Eagles coach Seth White said midweek that the odds were stacked against Adam Bignell and Kyle Shananhan lacing up while Smith was “50-50”.

“Carey Park have a very potent midfield with (Rory) O’Brien and (Josh) Krispyn in there and we’ll be a little undermanned – but that’s obviously where everything has to start,” he said.

“A few blokes we’ve used more up forward – like Bailey Maloney and Liam Reuben – will get more of a run through the midfield, but we’ll have to mix things up.

“The ruck battle will be interesting because we’ve been able to dominate games in there without capitalising on that so far.”

Both coaches said they were looking forward to representing their clubs in a manner that befitted the occasion.

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