2024 AFL Sydney Women’s Premier preview: Round 8

A CRACKING weekend of contested football it lies ahead as the ladder leaders East Coast Eagles get to sit back for the weekend, while four evenly matched games take place in Round 8 of the AFL Sydney Women’s Premier Division.

Saturday, June 1 @ 11:50am
Gore Hill Oval

Impossible to split on form, impossible to split on so many other areas, and a set of wildly different strengths and weaknesses, means that no other option can be envisioned but a very, very narrow margin.

North Shore’s run will trouble the Goannas on the outside of the contest which should result in some line-breaking delivery. However Parramatta’s key position making strength might affect the field position and force the Bombers to go wide rather than direct.

Watch for a couple of young guns in the game who will run out for the Bombers in Lucy Yates and Lily Sullivan, while the Goannas have teenagers such as Sophie Kavanagh, Megan Mifsud and Kiera Yerbury who catch the eye.

Parramatta by a point, just because North Shore Bombers are rebounding from their humbling loss to the Eagles two weeks ago, though have hopefully used the time off to reflect and reset.

Saturday, June 1 @ 12:25pm
Waverley Oval

The big clash of the weekend with two teams wanting to be right up there at the end of the season. Manly Warringah stumbled last round and will looking to make amends. The Wolves have been working in the run and link style of football, but that is exactly what UTS is trying as well, so that will even itself out.

The key to this game will be the inside contests. The side that will be tough enough in the clearances and be able to effectively extract the ball to runners or downfield should get on top. Both sides have experienced players, and the team that can utilise those best will be served well.

Watch for the Bats’ Ella Parker and tall Madeleine Quinn returning to UTS’ side, while forward Lauren Bull and fellow Swans Academy member Holly Wickham are players to note from the Wolves.

UTS by three points in a thriller.

Saturday, June 1 @ 1:30pm
Henson Park

Another very evenly matched battle, with both team having players filtering back in. Sydney Uni has the form edge, but they both very similar styles, especially in what they are attempting to do offensively.

Until UNSW sharpens up its avenues to goal and conversion of forward entries to put points on the scoreboard, Sydney Uni might just be too strong on the day. Amelia Martin has been in sensational form for the Swans Academy, returning to support the likes of Senna Gulden and captain Shelby Koh for the Dogs.

Sydney Uni has received a shot in the arm with its youth returning, headlined by AFLW Academy member Emma Juneja, while the Students also regain Lily Race and Kendra Blattman as well for the match. They should get up by a couple of goals.

Saturday, June 1 @ 1:40pm
Mike Kenny Oval

One team might finally get a win on the board for season 2024. Both sides have comparative performance ceilings that they just cant bust through this year. Their inside to outside extraction football skill level is not quite refined yet, and comparatively leaving them down at the wrong end of the ladder.

The effort has been excellent from both squads, but finding enough clean possessions, and in particular linkages, in order to be able to score goals, especially enough to win a game, has thus far eluded both teams.

Also, both teams mentally play strictly positional mindset football, and so teams and players who run, link and break lines tear them to pieces. It will be interesting to see which side strikes first or finds a way to break the armwrestle.

St George will not score a lot of points, because Kaitlin Noble is playing too well to let them, and the Demons’ best feature has always been their scramble defence. Bottom-ager Caydelan Mitchell-Bruce is a promising talent for the Dragons, while Cassidy McArthur returns from Swans Academy duties.

A great battle awaits, but Pennant Hills has the added experience and should win by a few goals.

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