Welcome to the official 2nd half of the season, back nine or top of the final home stretch....whatever you call it, it's SHOWTIME. All the excuses in the world are now used & spent. All sides have truly felt each other up (in a non-US gymnastics way of course). so you would think there maybe less surprises since everyone knows what they are facing but the opposite is normally true. Top teams get comfortable & bottom teams get desperate, the result is massive upsets. Although something tells me this year it won't be Away upsets by the way the Home form is going this year. That Away form continues to surprise. If we guessed that up to half way only 10 games of a total of 90 games would see the Away team win, we would be laughed at but it's true only ~10% of games see the Away team win & if Mt Lawley didn't have 4 of those 10, who knows what the stat would show.
As we wrapped up after halfway we are still witnessing some distance between the sides in 1 White this year. For example, we already have 7 games where the winning side have scored over 100 shots. Scoring over 100 isn't unusual but we only had 8 games over 100 last year, 5 the year before & 9 the year before, so to have 7 already you would think this year we'll break the magic 10 mark for the first time in many years. And these results are not necessarily coming from traditionally troublesome tracks like a North Beach, old Kardy or stinking hot Mundaring, so you’d have to think that the talent level spread is greater this year in 1 White. However, I think what might prove or dispel this theory is what that 6th, 7th & 8th final totals will be after R18, so we’ll keep an eye on how many points gets you safe as the Rounds tick down. Good bowls all.
SORRENTO v ROSSMOYNE
I Linford, P Crow, J Konig, M Sharrett
R Bone, C Grisbrook, R Hutchinson, S Mortimer
J Brown, A Anderson, D Dunstan, W Morrell
R Rogers, B Collins, W Elliott, B Kiely IN: S Mortimer OUT: P Webb
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This could be the start of a nice purple patch for the Swans as they get more Home games than Away on the back 9 & their draw over the next few Rounds looks favourable to get some big W's on the board. They won't find it easy against the River Rats & yes Rossmoyne haven't won an Away game this season but they did beat Manning Away last year in PL so they have the ability to put in a big performance every now & then.
Rossmoyne need a few Away wins to stay safe or even challenge for Finals to compliment their strong home form. Only dropping 1 game at Home so far is impressive & it's duly noted that they did win 5 Home games last year in PL. The difference for them this year is this away form. When last in 1 White in 2020 it was their amazing away form that got them into 1 Red when they won a stunning 7 from 9 on the road in some very tight games. This year is different as they are now not winning those close games away which makes a huge impact on their points.
Swans have the momentum at the moment but this one should be very close as not many teams are putting Rossmoyne away by big scores. I won't be surprised if there is an upset but Sorrento are 100% at home this season & they might just grab this one.
Sorrento 6 - 2
MT LAWLEY v QUINNS ROCKS
A Einfeld, D Rhodes, A Graham, M Bessant
C Bessant, G Herriot, J Bessant, K Cornell
M Masel, T Ingram, K Scott, P Callison
A Jones, L Kelly, P Sinden, C Green IN: S Connell OUT: A Einfeld
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The Mounters are flying as they head into the back nine. They are nearly 14pts ahead of 2nd spot & nearly 20pts ahead of 4th. They have close to 200 shots up on score diff. & have more Home games than Away over the next 9 Rounds. They are going straight to the big dance bar the end of the world....even the end of the season with COVID still will see them through if they can keep playing until at least mid-Feb.
Quinns will be quick to remember that the last time they played the Mounters at Home was the 2020 season & Quinns smashed Mt Lawley by 35 shots. We can't see that happening anytime soon but I don't think the Mounters will catch them on the hop like their R1 thumping of Quinns & surely the away side will be eager to have a right crack at fixing that early indiscretion that derailed their season.
No major changes for Mt Lawley but it looks like significant change for Quinns with Ward & Cantrill dropping back a spot to give Oldham & Smith a look at skippering. Probably doesn't hurt them rolling the dice & if they couldn't do it now with the current win/loss records then unsure when they could do it. It does give them a fresher look so expect the new skippers to come out swinging.
Mt Lawley 7 - 1
BASSENDEAN 1 v COCKBURN
S Alden, R Kenyon, D Snelgar, B Tie
S Davies, L Pike, D Killisch Von Horn, J Carrigan
J Krstic, T Lynch, M Whitely, N Kirkup
R Ellis, L McKay, M Watson, G Stokes IN: No changes OUT:
J Marevic, I Mateljak, V Dropulic, B Vidovich
W Tepania, D Bandy, D Ravlich, A Edwards
M Simunovic, M Musulin, D Gurr, D Gibson
M Abonnel, J Ricci, J Kop, B Dropulic IN: No changes OUT:
GAME OF THE ROUND: Cracking game here between 2 top sides. Cockburn took them with some ease in R1 by nearly 20 shots & I won't be surprised if they had a good nibble at them again in this game. Basso are probably good for a few more shots at home but unsure if they are good for 20 shots against a side that is itching for a big away win & has been so close so many times.
If the Lions don't win this then I can't see them top & even worse it gives Cockburn a massive look at 2nd spot. This is a huge huge game for both sides. If Cockburn win they have some very handy Home games & they are close to level with the Lions. So you would imagine game for game over the Final 8 games I would fancy the Roosters by 2-3pts in the end. If Basso win they put some breathing room between them & a side they know will be playing Finals & are 100% out to steal their spot in the ladder. Not discounting Gosnells but these sides should finish strong in the final few games.
Both sides are very similar in that they have some wonderful talent, especially on the back end but both sides have that 1 rink that can get leaky. Basso probably have the edge over the other 3 rinks when you go man for man. If Alden needs to draw Abonnel again for a re-match of R1 & someone needs to sit with Big Willie if Basso wasnt to contain the big threats & grind out the win. The Roosters won't be fearful of this one after their R1 results so wonderful game ahead.
Bassendean 1 6 - 2
WANNEROO v BASSENDEAN 2
C Bucholz, L Bryson, B Nelson, R Burns
C Parr, M Nievelstein, S Denny, J Tailor
D Triffitt, D Griffin, G Jack, B Bucowski
K Toster, B McMurdo, D Anderson, H Whitman IN: L Bryson, L Tailor OUT: G Sarich, N Costello
N Strachan, N Hall, R D'Souza, K Durward
E O'Sullivan, T Alden, G Foti-Cuzzola, S Bermingham
M Cook, P Hutchinson, R Maynard, J Holman
P Madigan, B Dinnison, D Blight, R Sheppard IN: No changes OUT:
The Roos are treading water going W-L-W-L & need a breakout game & this should be the perfect matchup to grab another win with near maximum points. Wanneroo will need to hit a nice purple patch soon to get them into Finals chat but at the moment they are a few shots & rinks off the current standard.
Basso had knocked together a nice double before the last R9 destruction by Gosnells so they have found some form of late. We don’t see Basso grabbing much over the next weeks so every point or 2 will be extremely valuable up to R18.
The Roos are prone to the odd upset at home so most teams have a chance especially with the greens running so well recently. This one should go to the home side fairly comfortably.
Wanneroo 7 - 1
GOSNELLS v WARNBRO
G Nicol, S Harris, N Tulett, M Crabb
B Holland, G Lynch, T Close, M Rickard
R Foy, E Gahan, P Gale, D Bradbury
F Carbone, C Hickinbotham, P Deas, A Hodge IN: No changes OUT:
K Cousens, T Dellar, S Ryan, D Sudden
B Kalinowsky, W Baker, T Lutey, C Foster
D Pattullo, L Kellow, A Shone, D Wagstaff
Dr G Jackson, G Watts, I Gibson, A De Brouwer IN: G Watts OUT: K Bancroft
The Kookaburra's are sitting pretty in 2nd spot which might be surprising to them as their form lacks a winning streak. The last few games are W-L-W-L-W-L-W. They haven't put 2 games together since R1-R3 but do they care, absolutely not. They are sitting 2nd & pole position to fight hard for that precious 2nd spot. Anything inside top 4 should work for Gosnells as they’ll surely roll the dice for Finals & fancy themselves against most sides.
The Wizards have a tough task to reverse the R1 result where Gosnells got the better of them. On their current form this game might be a little stretch too far but they’ll need a big upset win over the coming weeks to get them out of trouble. This one could come down to 1 blowout rink but you might think that Gosnells could cruise to a 30+ win.