The New England Nomads are gearing up for their biggest test of the North West AFL season.
The Nomads will head to Inverell’s Varley Oval this Saturday to face the high-flying Saints.
They managed a comfortable 16.26-122 to 6.5-41 win over the Tamworth Kangaroos in their last-start round 16 game but coach James Treweeke said the Saints encounter will be a “massive game.”
“Hopefully we will have a full team this time against them so it will show us exactly where we are at, especially leading up to finals so we are looking forward to it,” he said.
“It will show us what we need to work on. I am hoping to have a full-strength team, still need to confirm that but it will be very interesting game, especially being at Inverell – they are very tough to beat at home – so hopefully it will be a good day for us but we will wait and see.”
Treweeke said the win against the Roos showed improvement in the team but there is still more to work on.
“Especially from the weekend before against the Swans, I think we worked on a lot of things and fixed up a lot of things.
“I think our goal kicking got a bit straighter which had been a bit of a problem for us in the last few weeks.
“I thought we were improving, definitely improving towards finals so I was very happy with the win.”
There are still patches of the game the Nomads have lost intensity in and Treweeke believes if they repeat it against Inverell, they will be made to pay.
“I know against the Swans we came out after half-time and didn't switch on after the break and they really took advantage of that and I think that happened again on the weekend,” he said.
“We didn't switch on straight away for the first 15 minutes and they kicked a few goals anyway so it wasn't very pleasing.
“If you do that against a team like Inverell on the weekend they could kick a lot on us and win the game from it.”
The Saints have led the competition for much of the year and Treweeke puts it down to the club’s juniors stepping up.
“A lot of their young blokes have been playing every game. I know the last few years that I have been playing against them they have relied on a lot their older blokes but I think they have had a few inclusions, a lot of younger blokes stepping up,” he said.
“They play very attacking football and you can see that through the scores, they smash teams by 200 plus.”
In other Nomads news, junior player Morgan Dunn has picked up the Northern Inland Academy of Sport’s AFL athlete of the year award for the second year running.