U19 GRAND FINAL PREVIEWS

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Ray Leetham

MEGT U19 Premier
St Kevins v St Bernards at Trevor Barker  Sunday 2:20pm
The Bernards were good in defeating Old Xaverians but they take on the best form team in the competition. The Skobbers have a week off but will lose no match fitness as they are primed for action and will leave no regrets on the park. Their powerful prime movers led by Turnbull, Kennedy, Lewin, Spence and Canterbury may be too hard to man up and give St Kevins the edge. St Bernards have given their best but, line for line, they are overshadowed by opposition talent. The two tough finals may take the shine off the Bernards and this could be the difference.
If St Bernards are to have any chance Riley, Woods, Hedley and O’Halloran need to fire from the first bounce. Coach Rocky Iannello set his side up for this game and led the competition all year but the money has to be on the Tom Purcell/ Tim Sim coached Skobbers.
St Bernards have both Under 19 sides and their Colts in Grand Finals- this is a great achievement and a credit to outstanding junior development by the club.
On form , fitness and talent I have to go with the Skobbers, by 24 points.
U19 Section 2
University Blues v  Old Trinity at Bulleen Park Saturday at 12.00pm
The Blues shared the season honours with Whitefriars but the Friars have gone and have been replaced by Old Trinity. This will be a close one but the Blues are in form and have got a great side led by Spencer, Malt, Nilsson and Sandy. The OT’s are looking for the first premiership since 2008 and will need Nicolosi, Emerson, Bennet and Tyson to really fire. 
Old Trinity finished one game behind the Blues at season’s end so the difference between the two sides is not great but the Blues are September specialists. Trinity will be at full strength and the Blues the same, so it should be a great contest. Jeff Scotland has done an excellent job and should be rewarded with a flag but finals footy can be about disappointments too! Old Trinity’s coach Beasley has got his side close to the mountain but can they get to the top?
On season performance, finals experience and strength, University Blues should win.
U19 Section 3
Old Ivanhoe v Marcellin at Garvey Oval Saturday 9-30am
Marcellin has come from fourth in a great run but Old Ivanhoe are the team to beat. They are loaded  with talent including Erman, Begeman, Jowell and Marshall. They finished two games clear so they have an edge the coaching staff can use. 
The gap has got closer between the sides but Old Ivanhoe are the one that everyone is talking up. If Marcellin go man on man Old Ivanhoe will be too strong so they need to be creative and think outside the square with their side. They need to take risks and move the ball quickly if they want to win this contest. 
Coach Brad Shadbolt is confident and has done everything right with the side but is aware of Marcellin’s ability to cause an upset. Jordan Wise has done a great job coming from fourth spot with Marcellin, but they were only percentage away from finishing second. All that said who will win ? 
Old Ivanhoe are too strong in most areas and will win by 17points.
Under 19  North – Ivanhoe to beat St Bernards
Under 19 South – Powerhouse team all season Ormond to beat Hampton Rovers.
VAFA colts- Mazenod to defeat St Bernards