Round 2 of the 2019 Auckland AFL is in the books and the North Shore Tigers continue to roar after coming away 113 point winners over the Manurewa Raiders.
Mt Roskill Saints got their first win of the season after seeing off the Waitakere Magpies and the match of the round didn’t disappoint as the Uni Blues fought hard for their 12 point victory over a gallant Howick Hornets AFL side.
Manurewa Raiders vs North Shore Tigers
1st September, Mountfort Park, Manurewa.
For the second consecutive week, the Tigers travelled to Manurewa for round 2 of the 2019 season.
Looking to maintain their good form from round 1, the Tigers were aware that any game against the Raiders is always going to be a bruising encounter.
In the blustery conditions, the Tigers looked to use the wind to their advantage from the outset. Multiple goals in the first quarter as a result of intense forward pressure saw the Tigers race out to a 6 goal lead early on.
It was another solid game from new recruit Bryn Barnes-Webb with valiant support from Dr. Christopher Wong ensured that the Tigers were able to win multiple ground ball contests and get the ball out clean.
Going in to half time, the Tigers were in control having only conceded one goal to the Raiders.
The focus for the Tigers in the second half was maintaining the forward pressure and efficient ball use from the back. As the game was getting more and more physical, the Tigers remained composed and continued to use the ball well with some great passages of play from end-to-end.
Ruckman Steven Howard had a strong game and worked well with the Tigers midfielders.
With the game winding up, the Tigers started playing some of their best footy. Strong defensive coordination led by best on ground Dallas Abel, showed tenacity through the middle and strong delivery to the forward line ensured a solid victory for the Tigers.
Ronan Morling continues to develop for the Raiders. The young midfielder is hard at the contest and gets his hand on a lot of footy. Brandon Phillips and Tou Dodds also had strong games.
The Tigers will be worried about their set shots in front of goal. They kicked 19 behinds for the game and against stronger opposition, that could come back to hurt them.
“A good display by the team today against an opposition that never gave up. Having and extended bench made combinations messy but we are building as a strong purposeful group. Big thank you to Manurewa Raiders for hosting us and putting on a good show as always.” Tigers Head Coach Sean Mayes.
“It was another tough day at the office as we fell behind early and never recovered. Full credit to North Shore on their win. We showed glimpses of how we want to play but just need to do it more consistently.” Jordan Thompson – Manurewa
Howick Hornets vs University Blues
1st September, Paparoa Park, Howick.
University travelled to Howick to take on the Hornets for their round 2 encounter and the Blues didn’t know what to expect from the competitions newest challengers.
With a strong breeze blowing to one end it made it a game of two quarters, the one into the wind and the one with.
Howick took the breeze in the first quarter but were unable to convert their forward 50 entries into goals.
The defending Premiers seemed a bit stunned in the opening term as the Hornets applied a heap of pressure all over the ground.
Ruckmen Patrick Landy (Uni) and Blake Waters (Howick) had a ding dong battle all game. Waters, playing in only his second game, showed what he can produce against a much more skilled and taller opponent in Landy.
The second quarter was much more closely contested with both teams not able to pull away. Pete Jones (Howick) was having a field day down back with multiple intercept marks while rest of the Hornets back six did well in suppressing Uni’s key forward targets.
University used their experienced and kept clam in the second half to slowly chip away at Howick and build a solid lead going in to the final term.
Tim Stokes and Liam Beattie started to dominate the midfield early in the third term while Louis Herman-Watt was inspiring off the halfback line.
Down by 2 goals at the final change, Hornets small forward Elliot Bennett’s took only 23 seconds to reduce to that margin to 1 goal after kicking a superb goal.
University know how to close out the tight games and managed to hold on for a 12 point victory.
“It was another tough affair against our nearest rivals, adding to the growing rivalry building between the two clubs.” University Blues Coach, Chris Mundell.
“A stellar effort from the boys on Sunday but ultimately a disappointing end to what could have been.” Hornets Coach, James Dixon.
Mt Roskill Saints vs Waitakere Magpies
1st September, Mountfort Park, Manurewa.
A strong breeze at War Memorial Park greeted both Mt Roskill and Waitakere for their round 2 clash.
The Saints had first use of the wind and created plenty of opportunities but couldn’t convert them to the scoreboard only kicking 3 goals for the quarter.
Waitakere defenders Josh Copeland and Dan Moyle worked hard in the backline for the quarter, while down the other end of the ground, veteran Obe Porter took a strong mark in the forward line and converted the Magpies first goal.
The Magpies got on top and kicked their way back into the game in the second term thanks to the help of debutant Roman Prasad who had a game to remember gathering multiple possessions and even kicking a goal.
Mt Roskill were struggling to play into the wind during the first half of the quarter by not adjusting their style of play but inspiration came from veteran Dave Kay who got the Saints back in the game on the back of some genuine intensity to get the hard ball.
The Saints came out in the second half and wanted to be more clinical entering the forward line targeting key forwards Brendan Clark and James McKenzie, but Magpies put pressure on the forward entries.
Tristan Burnett showcased his overhead ability stopping the Magpies from exiting quickly outside 50, as well as new recruit and ruckman Kirk Murray.
Will Dickinson and Michael Boyce were excellent around the contest but again the Saints couldn’t fully capitalise kicking too many behinds, giving the Magpies a sniff going into their last quarter with the wind behind them.
Dan McGregor (Magpies) kicked two goals in the final term to get them back into the game but the Saints were too strong and were able to hold on and take their first win of the season.
“It was good to bounce back from last week where we had opportunities to take the game by the scruff of the neck, but didn’t quite play to a team plan. Today, especially in the last quarter we all stuck to the team plan and were rewarded for that, which was very pleasing!” Saints Coach, Peter Boyce.
“We were always in the game and were confident we could get up in the last quarter but we weren’t executing well enough to edge them back. We know what we are capable of, we just need to do it consistently every week.” Magpies Captain, Shane Leat.
Story – AAFL.co.nz