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MPNFL: Eagles line up semi-final showdown with favourite


June 6, 2018 by admin

CRANBOURNE’s crushing 91-point victory over Tooradin-Dalmore at Robinson Oval last Saturday has set up the inevitable clash with premiership favourite Narre Warren.

The Eagles’ sheer weight of talent proved too much for the Seagulls and the premier boasted 44 scoring shots in the 22.22 (154) to 9.9 (63) victory.

The huge win means Cranbourne faces a blockbuster semi-final against Narre Warren at Pakenham on Saturday.

Eagles coach Doug Koop said the key to knocking off Narre Warren was being more committed and keeping a close check on its better players.

“We think about each other a fair bit and it’s one win each. They’ve got a very good side and will have to do the same against us. Hopefully, we can put more pressure on them than they can put on us.”

It was always going to be an uphill battle for Tooradin-Dalmore against Cranbourne, despite clearly being the third best team in the competition this year.

Despite Sam Watson doing a superb job on champion full forward Marc Holt, limiting him to four goals, the Eagles found another forward with Michael Theodoridis booting five majors.

Star Seagulls midfielders Matt Wade and Beau Miller were both superb but Eagles’ guns Ray George and Matt Thompson were equally as impressive.

For every strong performance from a Seagull, there were two Eagles who did the same task.

“We pressured them for the best part of four quarters,” said Koop. “We were pretty even right across the board and our midfielders started off really well. Tooradin were super competitive early and withstood us but slowly and surely we squeezed them.”

Cranbourne led by just eight points at quarter-time but an impressive 7.8 to 3.1 second term meant the clash was all but over at half time.

Koop was particularly pleased with the return of Andre Young from injury, with the defender holding Julian Suarez to three majors and a handful of kicks.

Hallinan was disappointed with the performance but said the Eagles were just a class team who deserved the victory.

He said the damage could have been greater if it wasn’t for his back line. “The scoreline probably flattered us in a lot of ways,” he said. “Our back line was very good form most of the day.”


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