Round eight of the Tamworth Women’s Division appears akin to moving day at The Masters with the games to watch to played out in mid-table.
At 1pm on Saturday, South United play Quirindi Blue, while Oxley Vale Attunga tackle North Companions White. Later that afternoon, North Companions Black will be out too secure three points against Quirindi White, and Tamworth FC meet Kootingal White. Kootingal Purple has the bye.
According to FC coach Chris Hughes, his side should be able to overcome the Kougars though it will long term patterns most of concern to the Tamworth mentor.
“This game should not be too difficult to get the win, but it is certainly a danger game in terms of potentially developing bad habits,” he said.
“A good performance will be with our discipline to maintain what we’ve been doing all year and to not slacken off in any area.”
A number of unavailable players will provide a platform for some of the club’s younger stars to flourish.
“There is a number of positions still not locked down 100% which always makes it difficult for me to pick but also adds to the motivation for the girls to put their best foot forward each week,” Hughes said.
“We’ve got a couple more games with a bye and also a week or two off due to holidays so the goal is to get through the next couple games uninjured and fresh for the second half of the season, which I think this year will be very tight across a few clubs.”
Four points behind FC at the top-of-the-table, North Companions Black will be hoping to advance its goal difference over Oxley Vale Attunga. OVA and Black both sit on 12-points, with the Norths’ girls holding a three-goal advantage on goal difference.
The message from coach Pat Warren has been a simple one.
“Play a patient game and hold the ball… Maintain structure and play back if needed but respect the ball,” he said.
The school holiday period has proved a hurdle for all sides, with OVA not just heading into the weekend without not just a number of players but their coaching staff.
“We’re missing a few key players and both myself and assistant coach are away – so will have to rely on the foundations we have set to hopefully get the job done,” coach Steve Doherty said.
“We’re up against a good side and with no games for three weeks with the long weekend and washout it will be nice if we have a bit of rhythm.”
It has been a mixed year for Quirindi in 2021, with the club’s White side holding a position mid-table, while their blue side are having a season to forget.
“The focus for both teams will definitely be working off the ball, getting players to string the passes together with bit of purpose to push the ball into critical positions,” coach Neil Wilcox said.
Injuries will again limit the strength of both side’s this weekend, though Wilcox remains confident the side can secure points.
“The matches will both either be won or lost in the middle of the pitch with possession being the crucial element to get either side the three points for the match,” he said.
“With the large break the girls need to get themselves back into form over the next couple of weeks and start looking to get a few wins to take themselves into the second half of the season.”