Nomadic war cry

No holds barred for New England against Bulldogs
By Michael Morrissey (Armidale Express, 14/08/2006)
Saturday was a day of reckoning for the New England Nomads as they tussled with the Gunnedah Bulldogs in a fight to snare second place on the Tamworth Australian Football League ladder.

The Nomads more than lived up to the task, humiliating the Bulldogs with a 22.23.155 to 3.2.20 thrashing.

The Nomads are now in prime position to grab back the premiership trophy they last held in 2004.

They’ll have a week off before making the journey to Tamworth’s No. 1 Oval to take on the Swans.

If they win that match they’ll secure themselves a home ground grand final at Bellevue Oval to give themselves a unique advantage.

However, for the moment the Nomads are revelling in Saturday’s performance.

They came out hard early in the piece against Gunnedah.

New England lead 7.5.47 to nil at the end of the first quarter and extended their lead to 14.9.93 to 6 by halftime.

They slowed the pace in the second half but by the end of the third quarter looked very comfortable, more than a ton in front – 17.16.118 to 2.1.13.

The game marked a return to the Nomad running game that troubled TAFL squads earlier in the season.

The Nomads played the ball wide, moving it by hand and picking their marks against the bigger and more physical Bulldogs side.

Relying on their fsat paced players of John Mahy, Jack Sartor and Matty Maxwell, New England made the openings they needed.

The result was pushed along by Weston Whitby who kicked 13 goals to move up to become the TAFL’s fourth leading goalscorer for the season.

Tom Hunt, the Nomads’ golden child, finished second on the TAFL best and fairest tally behind Cameron Douglas from the Tamworth Kangaroos.

“Personally I thought he should have come first but anyway,” Nomads coach Adrian Walsh said.

“The guy who won it was a worthy winner, but I think one of the things about our side with a lot of good players is that they’re going to take votes off you,” Walsh said.

Walsh was impressed with his team’s performance against the Bulldogs.

“I’m pretty happy,” he said.

“The second half we probably crowded the forward line.

“The first half was pretty good, we gave Weston a lot of space.

“we’ve got this rule about no u-turns – to look for someone coming past and they were disciplined about that and there was always someone to hand off to.”

Walsh pointed out the performances of Hunt, Rich Malone, Julian O’Grady and Whitby as standouts.

“He did really well,” Walsh said of Whitby.

“He was always going to be dangerous in that sort of situation with the ball in the forward line.”

Walsh is hoping to keep the New England team on track in the coming weeks to ensure they’re well prepared to take on minor premiers the Tamworth Swans.

“If we win against the Swans we get a home grand final which would be great,” he said.

Not for reproduction except by permission of the Armidale Express.

One Response to “Nomadic war cry”

  1. Gonads Says:

    ‘Relying on fast paced players…Jack Sartor…’. Am i seeing things? Next thing they’ll be sayin is that he’s not a point kicker! Filth!
    And even after getting sent off in a game, T Hunt is still the golden child. What does he have to do to fall from grace???

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