THIS week in Tasmanian football has seen the Tassie Mariners begin their Under 18 Academy Series; the state’s All Nations team making the grand final; North Melbourne easily accounting for Carlton in Hobart; TSL action continuing; and an update on the AFL Tasmania Steering Committee.
Mariners kick off 2018 Academy Series in style
The Tassie Mariners won their first game of the 2018 Under 18 Academy Series with a victory over the Gold Coast Suns Academy in Blacktown last Saturday. The Mariners produced a five-goal final quarter to run out eventual winners 15.9 (99) to 8.6 (54) with captain Chayce Jones doing his draft chances no harm, kicking four goals and being named in the best players by coach Lance Spaulding. Excitement machine Tarryn Thomas had 23 disposals and showed some great glimpses throughout the match.
The team will now face the Northern Territory on Sunday in Dandenong, Victoria from 10:30am at Shepley Oval.
AFL Diversity Championships
Tasmania has fallen agonisingly short of claiming the 2018 All Nations trophy at this week’s AFL Diversity Championships with the side going down to Victoria in a one-point thriller on Thursday. In a rollercoaster of events, Tasmania were awarded a mark and a 50-metre penalty to kick for goal after the siren, before being called back to take the kick again, with the second kick falling short and awarding Victoria the win.
North continues dominant run at Blundstone Arena
North Melbourne defeated Carlton to the tune of 86 points on a cold night last Saturday at Blundstone Arena. A crowd of 14,266 packed into the Bellerive stadium on a cold and blistery night with many expecting too see a much tighter contest.
Homegrown product Ben Brown starred for the hosts, kicking 5.1, with North never really challenged after quarter time. Things turned disastrous for Carlton before the first ball had even been bounced when captain Marc Murphy injured his foot in the warm-up and was replaced by Nick Graham. It was later revealed that the injury will keep Murphy out for a month. Midfielder Shaun Higgins racked up 35 disposals for the Kangaroos while Ed Curnow was the Blues’ best with 26 disposals and seven tackles.
North now face Hawthorn at Etihad Stadium (3:20pm) on Sunday while Carlton host West Coast at the MCG tomorrow from 4:35pm.
TSL Round 3 wrap and Round 4 preview
Round 3 of the BUPA TSL kicked off last Saturday with a couple of games throwing out surprising results.
Launceston accounted for Lauderdale by 62 points at Lauderdale Oval, thanks to a six goals to one last quarter. It was a much improved performance by the Bombers coming off their loss to Glenorchy, but it was the tall forward-line of Sonny Whiting (4) and Mitch Thorp (3) that were able to put away last year’s grand finalists, who now sit 0-3.
In the season’s biggest upset so far, Glenorchy ran out 52-point winners over North Launceston at UTAS Stadium after a stomach-bug took out 11 players from the host’s on Saturday morning. It was an even spread from the Magpies who, while losing the midfield battle, where able to set-up defensively to hold last season’s premiers to a 7.9 (51) scoreline while kicking 16.7 (103) themselves.
In the round’s final game, North Hobart put in a much improved performance against Clarence after their 131-point defeat to Launceston in Round 2. The Roos ran out eventual winners 13.18 (96) to 4.8 (32) and were able to hold the Demons to a solitary major in the second half, but the Dees brought a highly physical and contested game to the Roos.
This week sees Round 4 action kicking off tonight (20/4) with two Friday night games taking place. Glenorchy will host North Hobart at KGV while Lauderdale travel to the Twin Ovals in Kingston to face the Tigers with both games kicking off at 7:15pm. The final game of the round sees Clarence host North Launceston at Blundstone Arena on Saturday from 2:00pm.
AFL Tasmania Steering Committee Update
In an article written by The Age’s Peter Ryan, it was revealed that the committee has tabled a number of options for the future of Tasmanian football.
While it is clear that nothing has yet been set in stone, a number of options have been tabled including:
- Putting a Tasmanian team in the NEAFL competition;
- Continuing the TSL in its current form or with some changes;
- Reverting to northern and southern leagues and;
- a push to put the Tassie Mariners back in the TAC Cup competition.
No resolution is expected until the June 30 deadline they set to deliver recommendations on the future of the TSL and player pathways.