Early finals snapshot for Northern Districts and Bomaderry Tigers

Northern Districts and Bomaderry Tigers face an early finals preview in Saturday's standout clash in round 16 at Artie Smith Oval.

Norths took advantage of Bomaderry's tough loss to premiers Wollongong last Saturday by beating Figtree to snatch third spot from the Tigers with three rounds left.

Fourth-placed Bomaderry trail Norths by a win and, even if they win this afternoon, are still likely to finish fourth due to having their second bye, worth no points, in the final round.

Norths, who face Nowra and Port Kembla in the final two rounds, will almost certainly finish third if they beat Bomaderry.

Norths are a win behind co-leaders Wollongong and Kiama, with the top two sides meeting in the final round.

Northern Districts' percentage of 180.92 is well behind that of Kiama (232.67) and Wollongong (219.76), leaving Norths needing huge wins against Nowra and Port Kembla, plus a win over Bomaderry, to have any chance of a top-two finish.

Kiama Power, fresh from the bye, take on the dangerous Shellharbour at Bonaira Oval in round 16 before facing win-less Albatross then Wollongong in the final round.

The Power's draw should be kind enough to seal at least a top-two spot, while Wollongong also have the inside running to finish in the top two by taking on Nowra today then Port Kembla before facing the Power.

Kiama and Wollongong have met in the last three grand finals but Norths have gained ground this season and Bomaderry remain a premiership threat.

In today's other game, Port Kembla get the chance to break a seven-game losing streak at home to Albatross.

In Sydney AFL, the Illawarra Lions are looking to finish the season strongly and host first division leaders Balmain at North Dalton Park at noon today.

The Lions (4-10) are eighth with three rounds remaining.

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