Soccer fans will have a better idea of who are the contenders and who are the pretenders when Bendigo Amateur Soccer League action resumes on Sunday.
The round three fixture is highlighted by Bendigo’s two best clubs – Eaglehawk and Epsom – battling it out with two of Shepparton’s best performed teams – Shepparton United and Shepparton South.
Eaglehawk and Epsom are expected to fight out the BASL championship again this year, but the two Shepparton clubs have the ability to upset the apple cart.
Reigning champions Eaglehawk travel to Shepparton to play a United side which is unbeaten after two rounds.
United belted Moama 7-0 in round oone and then drew 3-3 with Strathdale in an entertaining clash in round two.
Scoring goals has not been an issue for United, but Eaglehawk’s miserly defence and its creativity through midfield will be a major test for the BASL newcomers.
Epsom had more hype in the off-season than the latest release of the Samsung Galaxy8.
The Scorpions’ heavy off-season recruiting campaign landed a plethora of players and anything less than a championship in 2017 would be seen as a failure for last year’s runners-up.
Epsom has scored two wins from two games, but Tatura did stretch the Scorpions to the limit in a 2-1 result in round two.
On Sunday, Epsom hosts a Shepparton South side which opened the season brightly with a 4-3 win over Colts United. South came crashing back to earth with a 3-2 loss to Shepparton in round two.
Epsom conceded three goals in the first two rounds and coach Ryan Pollard will be looking for a clean sheet against the visitors on Sunday.
Third-placed Spring Gully and fourth-placed Tatura meet at Stanley Avenue.
The Reds put 10 goals past the hapless Moama last round, but Tatura’s defence shapes as a much tougher nut to crack.
In other games on Sunday, Golden City and Colts United will chase their first wins of the season when they clash at Shadforth Park and Strathdale should grab the three points when it travels to Moama.
Meanwhile, the highlight of the women’s round will be the clash between unbeaten teams Shepparton United and Eaglehawk.
United has plenty of firepower up front, scoring 13 goals in two games, while Eaglehawk’s strength is through the middle of the park.
Defending champions Epsom should record its second win of the year against Shepparton South, while Colts United will be out to win its third-straight match against Golden City.