Round 12 2006

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GLENELG only needs to venture into its recent past to realise its present campaign is at a crucial juncture.

From round 12 onwards in 2005, the Bays lost nine of their last 10 games to spiral out of contention, nose-diving from a 5-5 record to 6-14.

Glenelg was again 5-5 when it entered this year's round 12 fixture on the weekend when it tackled Central District, the Tigers' ensuing 68-point loss giving them four defeats from their past five matches.

A repetition of last year's meek decline from here on in would undeniably terminate Glenelg's hopes of contesting the major round for the first time since 1999.

But despite the result against Central, which saw the Tigers slip to sixth, another similar collapse appears unlikely.

The Bays of 2006 appear to be a tighter unit, made of sterner stuff than last years divided rabble.

Fast-starting Glenelg, unbeaten in first quarters this season, continued that impressive trend when it took an eight-point lead into the first change against the Dogs, after scoring the first goal through Brett Backwell, conceding the next three, then closing the quarter with three unanswered.

A goalless second term from the Tigers saw the Bulldogs recapture the lead, which they never ceded.

Central's 17-point half-time lead was increased to 28 at three-quarter-time, before a ravenous 7.6 to 1.2 fourth term cavalcade resulted in the Bays' heftiest defeat of the season.

In the last three quarters, the Bulldogs were never seriously challenged and outscored Glenelg 16 goals to four, the difference in the two sides' work rate clearly discernible, not to mention the gap in class between the rival midfield divisions.

“It was one that we certainly didn't see coming, said Glenelg coach Mark Mickan of the loss. ``I felt even though our second and third quarters were average at best, we were still in a position to challenge for a result (at three-quarter-time) just to drop away like that was a big concern.

“Our work-rate dropped off completely - it got progressively worse as the game went on.

“I don't think that (fitness) has been a problem.

“We had a very big pre-season, we do regular fitness work at training and we monitor that pretty closely, so I’m not prepared to make any excuses.

“I think the mental aspect of pushing ourselves when it really counts is whats important, and our ability to be smart with the ball.

After tough engagements with the Eagles and the Bulldogs over the past fortnight, the draw doesnt get any easier for the Tigers when they confront league leader North Adelaide at Prospect on Saturday, but an upset victory would be a major confidence booster.

SCORES: Central District 3.4 7.6 12.7 19.13 (127) defeated Glenelg 4.6 4.7 7.9 8.11 (59).

BEST: Central - Scoullar, Thomas, Switala, C.Gowans, O'Sullivan, Graham; J. Gowans, Wilson, Sibenaler; Glenelg - Moore, Backwell, Logan, Panozzo, Sherwood, Kirk.

GOALS: Central - Switala 4, J.Westhoff, C.Gowans 3, O'Sullivan, Cowan, Schell, Ware 2, L.Westhoff; Glenelg - Backwell 3, Horan, Saunders, Ruwoldt, Mules, Kirkby.

See also

1. Video of complete match

2. 2006


1. Steve Barrett article

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