WIND PROVES NEGATIVE FACTOR
In a game reminiscent of the early years of scoring in the history of the SANFL, Central District lost its round 15 home game to Sturt by 13 points, with a total of just eight goals managed by the two teams.
How can two SANFL teams manage no goals for three quarters of a game kicking to the end favoured by the wind? And the Bulldogs couldn’t muster even one major with the breeze at their backs!
Sturt virtually won the game with three first term majors behind the strong wind, to just one by Central, which ended up as the goal of the game, as Connor McLean threaded through a major from a tight angle, 40m out on the south-west boundary.
Trailing 3.2 to 1.0, the Bulldogs looked in a good position as it started the second quarter, with what appeared a three-to-four goal wind.
But for some reason, whenever Central had a chance to go along the grandstand wing, which seemed the obvious choice in setting up attack, the Doggies continuously persevered with running the ball down the outer side, into the dead scoreboard pocket.
It did not help that Sturt was gifted a free kick in front of goal before the first bounce of the second term after an indiscretion, but who would have guessed the resultant goal was the only major or the quarter? Central trailed 4.2 to 1.3 at half time
For all the frustration created early, it seemed the Dogs had got back on track through the third quarter, as Central booted the only two goals, in a three-minute period mid-term, through Jarrod Schiller and Brett Kennedy.
At lemons the Dogs were only six points in arrears, 4.4 to 3.4, and with the still fresh breeze at their backs, it was expected Central would build on the momentum since the long break and go on with it.
But it wasn’t to be, as chances went begging. After Sturt managed the only major of the final stanza, at the four-minute mark, the Bulldogs could not break through the tough and resilient defensive tactics of the Double Blues.
Kyle Presbury was solid throughout and arguably Central’s lone four-quarter contributor to easily garner best player honours.
Justin Hoskin, Harry Grant and Jarrod Schiller did plenty of good work at the stoppages, while Travis Schiller was good when on the field but was restricted by injury.
In defense Fraser Fort was a major factor why Sturt struggled to score effectively, while ruckman Jono Marsh was a major reason why the Bulldogs got back into the game through the third quarter.
There were just too many inexperienced players in the side on the day, with Chris Olsson and Luke Habel banished to the reserves – in retrospect probably a major issue, especially after the late withdrawal of Leek Alleer.
This Saturday Central District travel to Woodville to take on the high-flying Eagles.
Goals: McLean, J. Schiller, Kennedy 1.
Best: Presbury, Hoskin, Fort, Grant, J. Schiller, Marsh.
By Robert Laidlaw