Tahs’ do double to book grand final spot

WARATAH had a massive weekend in the Top End with the second placed sides in both the NTFL Men’s and Women’s competition winning through to the respective grand finals. In yesterday’s recap of the Women’s Premier League, it was minor premiers PINT who was on the receiving end of the Tahs’ victory, while in the Men’s Premier League, it was Southern Districts who had to enable its second chance.

After defeating St Mary’s last round, Waratah seemed to get every stronger with a dominant 56-point belting of the Crocs to stamp its ticket into the 2022/23 Men’s Premier League decider. From the get-go it was Waratah who set the pace, slamming home six goals to two in the opening quarter to lead by 22 points at the first break. By half-time, that lead had almost doubled as the underdogs were kicking at a sharp 11 goals from 13 scoring shots to lead 11.2 (68) to 4.3 (27).

Southern Districts managed to stem the bleeding in the third term as both sides kicked 2.2, but the ladder leaders still faced a 41-point deficit with a quarter to play. It proved to be too much to overcome, as Southern Districts only managed the 1.2, while Waratah booted 3.5 to run out the match strongly, 16.9 (105) to 7.7 (49).

Tom Banuelos, Darcy Hope and Robert Turnbull all kicked two goals apiece in the 56-point win, as they were among 13 goalkickers for Waratah. Along with kicking a goal each, Jake Bowd, Arnold Kirby, William Collis and Thomas Cree were also named among the best. For the Crocs, Dylan Barry was the only multiple goalkicker with two snags, while Sam Dunstan and Cam Ellis-Yolmen did their best for the Crocs in a loss.

In the other match, St Mary’s eliminated Nightcliff from premiership contention, running out 35-point winners in the first semi-final. Both sides were level at quarter time, but St Mary’s kicked away in the second quarter with six goals to two. Though the Tigers did hit back to shave the margin back to eight points with a quarter to play, the Saints picked up the pace again and slotted four goals to zero in the final term to collect the win and book their place in next week’s preliminary final, 13.8 (86) to 8.3 (51).

It was a two-man show up forward with Jackson Calder and Dylan Landt sharing the spoils with bags of fice goals, making up for 10 of the Saints’ 13 majors. In a losing effort, John Butcher (three goals) and Jack Hammond (two) were key for Nightcliff up front.

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