Rovers : 0-3-3 lost Cheltenham 5-9-39
This weekend’s game was a rematch between the top 2 teams from D5 that were elevated to D4. In our last encounter, we had drawn with Cheltenham, but we knew that they were a very skilled, big-bodied side.
The first quarter was a wrestling match, with neither side able to break-through to score early. The Rovers played with the wind, but both defenses were on top.Cheltenham were able to adapt to the conditions quicker than the Rovers and finished the quarter with a solitary goal ahead. In second quarter, the game was played mostly in the Cheltenham forward half, as they surged with the wind. At the break, Cheltenham were 3 goals & change, and the Rovers were yet to score.
The Rovers applied themselves with renewed effort in the 3rd, and with the wind at our backs once more, the team pushed hard into the forward line. Despite trying valiantly, and getting a sniff a few times, the Rovers couldn’t buy a goal, instead registering 3 behinds. In the last quarter, Cheltenham asserted their dominance again, but the Rovers did a better job than in the second, with better pressure and running out of our backline.
At the final siren, it was a comfortable win to Cheltenham, who were deserving victors. The Rovers can learn a number of things from this game that we can work on at training during the week, and then apply at next week’s contest.
- Gutsy efforts by Mac and Ben S in the ruck and in the forward line. They were dangerous wherever they went.
- Great run & concentrated effort by Jack G in competing for a loose ball across the half-forward line, despite being out-numbered and under pressure.
- Spectacular mark by Mitch T under pressure in the forward line. Both Harry and Mitch T played especially well throughout the game.
- Dour defending by Heath D, ably supported on the last line of defense by Jake M and Chevi O.
Things we did well
- Backline strength. The boys down back were under pressure throughout the day, but worked together with plenty of G&D to clear the ball out of the danger area.
- Playing to the siren on minimum numbers. The effort of the players in running out the game couldn’t be faulted. Despite losing our bench due to unavailability and injury, the team worked hard until the final siren.
Room for Improvement (RFI’s)
- Play to the conditions. Despite plenty of wet weather training this week, we made too many skill errors in the wet during the game. We know how to mark in the wet, and we know not to bounce the ball, so let’s switch-on and play to the conditions.
- Connection between Mids & Forwards. Despite getting a good amount of the ball in the midfield, we were unable to link successfully with our forwards. This requires a combination of clean delivery from the mids and smart running patterns from the forwards. Something for us to work on this week.
- Play in-front. Although this is mostly a forward RFI, it applies across the board. When we play in front, we see the play in front of us develop, and allows us to make split-second decisions that can be the difference between first to the ball, or chasing our opponent.
- “Work hard to get the next contest!”. When the coach says makes this statement, this is what he means … Daniel Rioli – run, chase, tackle, goal.