PREMIER B SEASON SHAPING AS A BEAUTY

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Andrew Leonard

Premier B is often the most competitive section of the VAFA and expect 2013 to live up to those expectations. 
It all starts on 13th April and all teams start just a magnificent season away from from a berth in the top section of Amateur football. 
The VAFA Football Operations department have confirmed that this is a draft fixture only and the fixture is still subject to change, so don’t start your preseason spying on your round 1 opponent just yet. 
However have assessed the first six weeks for each team below but before we get to that let’s look at the highlights to look out for in Premier B for 2013. 

  • Fitzroy’s first game in Premier B will be a trip to AJAX
  • Old Trinity will commence their campaign to bounce straight back to Premier with a tough home match against Old Melburnians
  • Caulfield Grammarians will have to beat St Kevin’s at home for their first win in over a year. 
  • Parkdale Vultures will debut in Premier B at home to Old Brighton
  • Old Haileybury will be on the road in Round 1 when they face Werribee Districts away; and 
  • The Premier C Grand Final rematch will not be until Round 8 when the Roys will host the Vultures. 

A mark has been given to each team’s first six weeks with an A+ considered a dream start to the year. 
AJAX: Two home games (Fitzroy & Werribee Districts) in the first two weeks is a good start. Although this is tempered by the three away trips to Old Melburnians, Old Haileybury and Old Brighton. Old Trinity in round 4 won’t be easy at home either. C+
CAULFIELD GRAMMARIANS: Not a welcoming start to a season for a side looking for a first win since they won this title in 2011. St Kevin’s at home in round 1 is followed by Old Melburnians away. Then the two promoted sides in consecutive weeks before an away trip to Werribee and Old Trinity at home. Could have been better. C+
FITZROY: Four home games in the first six is a pleasant welcome to Premier B. Do face both relegated teams from Premier with the trip to Caulfield Grammarians in round 4 followed by a visit from St Kevin’s. Home games (Old Trinity, Old Brighton & Old Haileybury) should allow for positive start.  B+
OLD BRIGHTON: Play the two promoted sides – both away – in the first three weeks plus have both St Kevin’s and Old Haileybury at home. Old Melburnians away will be a tough assignment followed by AJAX at home but expect Old Brighton to have runs on the board early. B+
OLD HAILEYBURY: At home just twice in the first six rounds, the Bloods face tough away trips to to St Kevin’s and Old Brighton in consecutive weeks. Also travel to Fitzroy, whilst Parkdale Vultures and AJAX are the only two to grace McKinnon in the first weeks of the year. B
OLD MELBURNIANS: Good opening test as first two are against relegated sides from Premier. AJAX (home) and Werribee Districts (away) are winnable with Old Brighton and Parkdale Vultures rounding out the first six, the OM’s have as good a start as could be hoped for. A
OLD TRINITY: Play the two promoted sides and the two lowest ranked from Premier B last year in the first half dozen. Old Melburnians at home in round 1 is a good start and will be confident traveling to Glenhuntly Oval to play Caulfield Grammarians in round 6. A+
PARKDALE VULTURES: First test at this level made easier by four home games in the first third of the year. Visit Old Haileybury and Old Trinity though which are tough road trips. Should be able to capitalise on the good draw despite visits from Caulfield and St Kevin’s in consecutive weeks. B+
ST KEVIN’S: Two away fixtures will not be an easy start for SKOBs, nor will just two home games in this period of the season. Only Werribee Districts and Old Haileybury will visit TH King early on whilst there are road trips to Caulfield, Brighton, Parkdale and Fitzroy to negotiate. Come out of this with a positive record and look out. C
WERRIBEE DISTRICTS: Needs a good start to avoid fears of the drop and can get it with a win against Old Haileybury at home first up. AJAX and Old Trinity away are followed by visits from Old Melburnians and Caulfield Grammarians before a trip to St Kevin’s. Tougher start than most. C 
Agree or disagree with the assessment? Tweet @LennyVAFA to grade your team’s start to the year, include the hashtag #vafafixture and #vafapremB.
The complete 2013 fixture will be available after the VAFA’s AGM next Monday 3rd December 2012.