- Written by Walter Pless
- Published: 31 March 2011
Photo: South Hobart's Brayden Mann has the potential to terrorise the Beachside defence if they don't police him closely [PlessPix]
Glenorchy Knights will welcome back defenders Alex Holmes and Jacob Huigsloot for their important match against New Town Eagles at KGV Park at 8pm on Friday.
Holmes has been serving a one-game suspension, while Huigsloot has been injured.
They will, however, miss Corey Smith, who is in Brisbane training with the Vikings national Futsal squad, and Tom Sherman, who is unavailable because of work commitments.
“It’s a game we have to win,” said Knights coach, Nick Harrison.
New Town Eagles will be without goalkeeper Nathan Pitchford, who is unavailable. His place will be taken by the promising Liam Ferrall.
Eagles have also lost the services of sweeper Shane Kent, who has returned to his former club, Metro, in League One.
The Eagles team will be coached by Kevin Clamp in the absence of George Krambousanos, who is in Melbourne for his daughter’s wedding.
“It’s a very important game after what happened to us last week,” said Krambousanos. “It’s take me three or four days to recover.
“Our training sessions this week were good, the vibes were good, and now it’s up to the lads to perform.
“There’ll be a few team changes and I hope they work because we haven’t had much time to practice.
“People are running Knights down, but I think they’re a lot better than people give them credit for.
“They could have beaten Olympia if they hadn’t had a player sent off and if Corey Smith hadn’t gone off injured, and they could easily have beaten Zebras.
“They are playing well and the players are backing Nick Harrison, which is a strength.”
Knights are in last place, while Eagles are third on the Forestry Tasmania Southern Premier League ladder.
Leaders Clarence United entertain Eastern Shore rivals Olympia Warriors at Wentworth Park on Saturday at 6.30pm and Clarence will remain top of the ladder if they win.
Second-last Olympia are also desperate for a win as they have won only once in their four home games to date. This is their first away game of the league season and it will be daunting task to face the league leaders at home.
Clarence will still be without their captain, Ben Parker, while Ben Mascolo is out because of a broken leg. Central defender Matt Lewis has a thigh strain and will also be missing.
Doubtful starters are Jae Ho Lee, Seung Woo Park, Joseph Stevens and Julian McMahon.
Sam Reibel and Chris Nicholson will come in to the Clarence squad.
Photo: Chris Hey is desperate for an Olympia win as they venture away from Warrior Park for the first time in the league [PlessPix]
Olympia will be without the suspended Brady Cronk, but Craig Stockdale should return after missing last weekend’s match.
“We had an injury list of six senior players out on Monday night for this week’s game, plus Cronk suspended,” said Olympia coach, Chris Hey.
“A couple of players will have fitness testing from that list, and, hopefully, will be passed fit to play.
“It’s a difficult game, with Clarence no doubt eager to bounce back from last week.
“They have dominated Olympia in games last season and we will have to play at our best to get a result.
“We are creating excellent chances during games, but have missed some shocking chances and players need to be more accountable in front of goals.
“I would be worried if we were not creating chances, but we are and have been woeful in taking our chances.
“The guys are still very much up beat and the atmosphere at training is very positive, which is a good sign.”
Photo: Romeo Frediani will be hoping the Zebras won't be prey for the Lions [PlessPix]
Fifth-placed Tilford Zebras entertain fourth-ranked Kingborough Lions United at KGV Park at 2.30pm on Saturday. Only a point separates the sides.
Luke Cripps has trained well and should be included in the Zebras squad, together with Sam McIntyre.
Ricky Self is making good progress and should soon be fit to resume.
Kingborough should have everyone available and will possibly field the same starting line-up as against Olympia last weekend, with Adam Hinkley possibly returning to the squad.
Photo: Adam Hinkley should make a return for Kingborough Lions [PlessPix]
If Clarence lose to Olympia on Saturday, reigning champions South Hobart can go to the top of the ladder by beating Beachside at South Hobart at 2.30pm on Sunday.
Jonathon Lo is back from his skiing holiday in Canada and was looking sharp at South Hobart training this week, but coach Ken Morton is unlikely to change his starting line-up after last Saturday’s resounding 8-0 win over Clarence United. Lo may be on the bench.
Defender Jim Pennicott suffered a pinched nerve in his back but moved quite freely at training later this week and should be fit to play.
Beachside coach Brett Pullen knows what his newly promoted side is up against when they confront the league champions, despite having secured their first win last weekend.
“What can a newly promoted team say as they come up against the current champions, who destroyed the ladder leaders 8-0 last week at the same ground we face them this week?” said Pullen.
“They have a senior coach with more trophies then he has had hot breakfasts, up against a newbie with one official win.
“Again, Beachside will go out with a game plan, a plan that is in place to ensure the survival of the club in the Premier League.
“We will field a largely unchanged line-up, depending on late injuries, and we intend on continuing the progress of the playing group as a whole.
“I would like to again thank the great support we had last week against Eagles in our history-making first Premier League home win.
“That support came from our new junior teams, ranging from under-10 to under-14 boys and girls, and their families, as well as from the members of our Division 2, 3 and 4 sides, that are the social backbone of any club.
“And, to see Kurt Reynolds and John Boulous at the game representing FFT and the state programs was fantastic.
“And, thanks also go to the local residents from Sandy Bay who enjoyed a day out in the sun.
“We encourage all, and more, to come to see the next home game Beachside has, when we entertain ‘relegation contenders’ Olympic Warriors, under their embattled coach Chris Hey, and introduce them to a field of grass on Sunday 10th April at 2.30pm Sandown Park.”