Round 3 is traditionally a big round for a number of reasons but facetiously I like to call this & the next round, the FIGJAM Rounds.......this is where the new & seasoned guys start to feel the pressure of settling in after a few early loses as they sold the selectors a fine fairytale of their bowling worth, which everyone is eagerly awaiting to witness this amazing talent to match the words!! Over the week the selectors will probably hear more excuses than Jesse Hogan about why potential didn't translate to results, so some Selectors phones might be 'low on battery’ for the week. Joking aside, at the end of the day we all need to remember it's only a game of bowls & the selectors will invariably get a lot wrong, not just in this Round but throughout the season as most do not willingly vie for the position on election day.
Back to the important stuff, 5 good looking games this week where I think we'll continue to see some decent score differentials. After this Round, we should see only 2 teams remain unbeaten & 2 more remain winless but let's have a closer look.
OSBORNE PARK v KARDINYA
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S Vinci, C Vinci, S Back, M Holt
N Ball, J Rochford, R McNamara, W Lee
C Stokes, C Booth, R Knapp, G Knight
W Bezant, G Fewings, B Regan, J Edgar IN: R McNamara, G Knight OUT: K Stower, G Wake
Hard to see the positives for the Saints over the last 2 weeks other than saying....it possibly can’t get any worse. 0 from 16pts is not the ideal start of a side that beat Sorrento in their last game of last season, where the Swans are so far unbeaten in PL.
Yes there’s a few changes across the Saints this year but nothing to explain the poor start other than a possible anomaly which they’ll have a chance of changing this week against another winless side. Both sides seem to be suffering the same faith which is established back ends which held both teams together very well last year & in many games gave the other rinks a 10+ shot win to allow a buffer for the others to win the Agg.
The Kats have lost both games by less than the Saints so there’s certainly merit in backing them this Round but I’ll give Osborne Park another chance before lighting the flares.
Osborne Park 7 - 1
GOSNELLS v WARNBRO
G Nicol, M Crabb, N Tulett, D Bradbury
B Holland, G Lynch, T Auckland, M Rickard
E Gahan, P Gale, C Watters, R McKay
F Carbone, C Hickinbotham, P Deas, I Farley IN: OUT: No change
K Cousens, L Kellow, M Rae, P Guelfi
W Baker, D Pattullo, J Ghijsen, J Maley
L Strange, Dr G Jackson, A Shone, D Phillips
S Mawdsley, K Bancroft, M McGloin, D Kitson IN: S Ryan OUT: J Ghijsen
Quite the opposite in this game where both sides are travelling sweetly winning 2 from 2 to get off to the perfect start. Fairly expected for the Wizards but Kookaburra’s are commanding some respect with some gutsy wins to date to leave them tied 2nd with the Wizards. Something is going to give between these 2 sides & it’s a hard one to call.
Hard to pin point the key targets in both sides as only 1 (Strange) of the 8 skippers has won both games so far but that also indicates good depth in both sides.
I do fancy Gosnells at home & they were very impressive there last year but I’ll reluctantly side with the Warnbro. However, I feel pretty bad as this is my 3rd week going against the Kookaburras who are playing great bowls so I’m certainly happy to be wrong....again!
Warnbro 6 - 2
WANNEROO v SAFETY BAY
K Toster, D Griffin, R Humphryson, H Whitman
D Turra, E Widermanski, B Nelson, B McMurdo
H Ward, M Nievelstein, G Sarich, B Bucowski
D Triffitt, N Palmer, L Bryson, G Jack IN: No change OUT:
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I did look back on that R2 win for the Roos & feedback was similar in that they we very solid across the rinks & deserved the very hard fought win. That’s 2 pretty tough games for Wanneroo to get the season off & running & they we just superb across both.
The Bay took apart their opposition last week & cruised to a big home win but I think this will be significantly harder this week. Again Safety Bay certainly don’t have an easy start either as I’d confidently say they’ll have played the top 2 teams in the first 3 Rounds, so if they get 2 wins from 3, it would be fantastic for the Bay.
Both sides have solid back ends which is so critical as we’ve seen over the last few weeks so I can’t see the Bay not bringing at least 1-2pts home in a good contest.
Wanneroo 7 -1
WARWICK v BASSENDEAN
G Hinge, G Smith, M Golding, R Loran
L Hill, B McNamara, V Giuffre, D Herbert
B Ledingham, C Boyle, K Pearce, D Dunstan
J Borkowski, A Hornby, R Newstead, I Sparrowhawk IN: R Newstead OUT: A Dowson
E O'Sullivan, P Madigan, H Goddard, T Alden
R Revell, J Morss, G Stokes, T Parravicini
T Lynch, R Ellis, B Tie, N Kirkup
M Erceg, A Caccioppoli, P Hutchinson, D Snelgar IN: T Parravicini, N Kirkup, B Tie OUT: J Holman, M Bessant, R Furci
Tough game here & this will be an important one for both sides as they’ll be tussling for that dreaded mid-table position where 5-6pts in April’21 will be gold dust. Both sides have a good win each under their belt, so the initial pressure has lifted. However, you’d think that the Magpies need this one more to start building momentum.
I feel this game may be decided on the matchups. If the Magpies can get their big guns onto a softer Basso rink they might get that 15shot margin to carry the balance. The Lions have plenty in attack & wont be too phased by the grass but this one will be very close, where the home side might just grab this one late.
Warwick 6 - 2
QUINNS ROCKS v MOSMAN PARK
R Cantrill, A Barker, J Gibson, R Thomas
C Parr, P Wernicke, L Johnson, S Newby
J Berecz, S Smith, W Fairjones, B Crawford
M Hinchcliffe, S Cooper, C Bartle, S Cavanagh IN: P Wernicke, S Newby OUT: D Rogers, M Ong
M Cranswick, S Swanson, A Gryta, A O'Sullivan
S Edmonds, L Beurteaux, D Adams, M Van Bemmel
C Hoffman, T Cranswick, W Tan, R Kershaw
D Marsland, M Robertson, O Dawson, T Massang IN: M Robertson OUT: S Jocelyn
Interesting game to wrap up the Round as Mosman Park didn’t travel too well away in R1 but that was against the Roos in a great contest. Quinns just can’t drop 2 home games in a row after also losing in R1. Life will get more difficult for them going 0-3 than 1-2. They’ll need more than Berecz to show up with a big game this weekend to snag the big W.
Mossies are at that 1-1 tipping point where they’ll be keen on going back-to-back after last weeks win. I’m sure they’ll have had a good chat before R1 knowing the criticality of the first 4 Rounds where they got dealt a stinker in 3 of the 4 are Away games. In saying that if they grab 3 from 4 they’ll be humming & that gives them a huge chance in January to capitalise on those corresponding fixtures. Mossies should be too strong but Quinns will be right up for this one.