Web_jfcvyar_webBy James Brosnan

THE home and away season has been and gone and the Alberton finals are already upon us with the action kicking off in Korumburra on Saturday. Moving into third position on the ladder, Yarram will take on Fish Creek in the second elimination final. Coached by good friends Griffin Underwood (Yarram) and Andrew Seccull (FC), the two will be anything but come Saturday as they fight to advance through to the second week of the finals with the help of their older brothers Ryan and Adrian respectively.

The Demons come into the contest as favourites having won their last eight matches while Fish Creek have been solid with wins in five of their last six games. But after the lessons of last year, favouritism will be a tag that Fish Creek will be happier to live without. The two sides have met just the once this season in Round 13 with Yarram winning by 26 points. That match eight weeks ago will amount to little on Saturday when the red and white rivals do battle in what’s expected to be a rugged affair on Saturday. For the first time in a long time, Korumburra-Bena’s reserves find themselves in an elimination final up against Kilcunda-Bass. A Bulldog win on their home ground should be a mere formality after they flogged the Panthers by 99 points in Round 16. Last year’s runners-up MDU will face off against Phillip Island in the Under 18s. The Demons won the pair’s only meeting this season by 46 points back in Round 13. The fourths sees Dalyston, who dropped from second this week, take on Yarram with the Magpies set to start as warm favourites.

Sunday road trip
AS IF losing to Yarram on Saturday didn’t hurt enough for Phillip Island, costing them third spot on the ladder, they now have to drive back to Alberton West for Sunday’s match against Korumburra-Bena. The common finals sight of the red, white and blue blur will be on show in the do or die senior match. The clubs have met twice this season for a win each. Phillip Island inflicted Korumburra-Bena’s second consecutive loss in Round 11, winning by 49 points. But KB bounced back in Round 19, kicking away to win by 24 points at Cowes. Both sides lost on the weekend but KB comes in with a better form line than Phillip Island, with three losses in their past six matches. It is a rivalry that has grown in recent years, added to by the spiteful contests in the reserves.

They won’t be the only participants travelling east, with service stations on notice for the western invasion. Tarwin will get another chance to claim that elusive finals victory when they take on Foster in the reserves. The Sharks were 15 point winners when the sides met in Round 8. Kilcunda-Bass and Fish Creek will square off for a berth in the Under 18s semi-finals. The Panthers have the winning form over Fish Creek following a 10 point win in Round 8. Phillip Island’s fourths players are set for a bleary eyed morning when they will have to travel to Alberton West to take on the two time reigning premiers Fish Creek.