THE Rural Bank Bendigo Pioneers will be aiming to finish their TAC Cup season on a high when they take on the Greater Western Victoria Rebels in Ballarat on Saturday morning.
The Pioneers have won just three games for the season – one of which came against the Rebels when they prevailed by 16 points in round two.
“We’ve had a bit of the flu and tonsillitis go through the club, which is something we’ve been struggling with for a couple of weeks, but that happens at footy clubs,” Pioneers coach Rick Coburn said on Friday.
“But other than that we’re ready to go and looking forward to Saturday’s game.”
Ladder positions indicate a winnable game for the Pioneers at the early start of 10.30am at MARS Stadium.
While the Pioneers (3-14) are on the bottom of the ladder, the Rebels (4-12-1) are only one rung ahead.
However, it will be a vastly different Pioneers team that takes to the field from the one that defeated the Rebels earlier in the season, with Coburn expecting only 12 players from that game to line up on Saturday.
The Pioneers will use their 66th player for the season when 16-year-old Lucas Caccaviello from Nyah Nyah West United gets his first taste of TAC Cup football.
Meanwhile, the Pioneers’ Brodie Kemp has been named as one of 22 players in the Level One AFL Academy for 2018, which consists of players eligible for the Draft in 2019.
The AFL has also introduced a development list of tall prospects, with Sandhurst Marist Dockers’ Aaron Gundry, who is in the Pioneers’ under-16 squad, one of the eight players selected.