HDFL round 18 preview

Colbinabbin's Stephen Tuohey.
Colbinabbin's Stephen Tuohey.

ELMORE v COLBINABBIN - 2.15pm Saturday at Elmore.

Last time: Round 9, 2014: Colbinabbin 14.16 (100) d Elmore 13.4 (82).

Since 1995: Colbinabbin 26; Elmore 16.

ELMORE - last crack for the Bloods to avoid a winless season.

The Bloods are at home to Colbinabbin - an opponent they produced one of their most competitive performances against in round nine when they were beaten by 18 points.

No club wants the stigma of finishing winless, and that will help drive the Bloods Saturday.

COLBINABBIN - for the second year in a row the Grasshoppers look likely to finish sixth. 

They can still make the finals, but they not only need to belt Elmore, but hope LBU flogs White Hills to make up the one game, plus 14 per cent, difference on the Demons.

In short, the Grasshoppers needed about a 30-goal swing on White Hills to be a chance.

LEITCHVILLE-GUNBOWER v HUNTLY - 2.15pm Saturday at Gunbower.

Last time: Round 9, 2014: Leitchville-Gunbower 19.15 (129) d Huntly 8.16 (64).

Since 2010: Leitchville-Gunbower 6; Huntly 3.

LEITCHVILLE-GUNBOWER - doesn’t get any simpler for the Bombers - win and they earn the double chance.

But lose and they leave themselves open to the possibility of being knocked out of the top three by Mount Pleasant.

The Bombers are in need of some goalkicking practice, having kicked 8.11, 10.17 and 4.14 their past three games.

HUNTLY - after playing finals the past two years, the season comes to an early end for the Hawks, who will finish seventh.

They gave a good account of themselves against LBU last week in a 19-point loss and should be determined to end the season with the scalp of a finals-bound team.

Their best is good enough to challenge the Bombers.

LBU v WHITE HILLS - 2.15pm Saturday at Lockington.

Last time: Round 9, 2014: White Hills 11.10 (76) d LBU 9.12 (66).

Since 2001: LBU 20; White Hills 10.

LBU - the Cats enter the final round with nothing to gain or lose from a ladder perspective.  

Regardless of the result against White Hills, they are going to finish second on the ladder.

But as well as wanting to hit the finals on the back of a win, they could also find some motivation in the fact White Hills beat them in round nine.

WHITE HILLS - the Demons are on the verge of a return to the finals for the first time since 2011 and only the fourth time in the past decade. 

Beat the Cats and finals are guaranteed, but lose and their grip on fifth is most likely to come down to percentage.

First aim on Saturday is to win, but if the game is slipping, then it’s damage-control mode.

MOUNT PLEASANT v NORTH BENDIGO - 2.15pm Saturday at Toolleen.

Last time: Round 9, 2014: North Bendigo 18.14 (122) d Mount Pleasant 6.9 (45).

Since 1996: Mount Pleasant 23; North Bendigo 18.

MOUNT PLEASANT - the Blues still have their top three pulse beating.

But the odds are stacked against the Blues gaining the double chance.

Not only do they need to be the first team since April to beat North Bendigo, but they also must rely on Huntly upsetting Leitchville-Gunbower to climb from fourth to third.

NORTH BENDIGO - the Bulldogs will be out to put the finishing touch to what has been a superb home and away season.

A win on Saturday would finish them off at 15-1 ahead of a week off before the second semi-final on August 23.

Their pressure is reflected in their opposition kicking a wasteful 45.84 against them their past seven games.


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