Bomaderry, Northern Districts face off in AFL South Coast

They share the same nickname and colours, but it’s likely only one of them will make the AFL South Coast top six in a fortnight’s time.

Options: Tyler Dunstan. Picture: Team Shot Studios

Options: Tyler Dunstan. Picture: Team Shot Studios

Bomaderry and Northern Districts face off in a crucial showdown at Artie Smith Oval, with Jack Boxsell making a timely return from a thumb injury, to add some firepower to the Shoalhaven outfit. It will be the most important game between the two Tigers clubs since the 2008 grand final.

Northern Districts are currently sixth, ahead of Bomaderry on percentage. 

Assistant coach Matt Barnes said Bomaderry expect to be part of the top tier.

“We’ve always maintained we want to be a top division side,” he said. 

“There are a lot of good young players at the club and we’re aiming to be a top three club in the coming years, so we’re working hard towards that.

“We went with the Lions for half the game last week, but they’re a very professional outfit and it showed us what we need to do against the top teams.”

Hard-running teenager Tyler Dunstan has emerged as a star of the future, as well as Connor Clarke, while Jordan Matthews and the returning Boxsell provide goalkicking potency for Bomaderry. Northern Districts face a difficult assignment against Wollongong Bulldogs next week, while Bomaderry will start hot favourites against Port Kembla, before the new top-tier of six teams format is decided.

Shellharbour are the only other club in danger of missing out, but the Suns are expected to beat winless Nowra-Albatross next week after taking on premiers the Lions on Saturday.

AFL SOUTH COAST

Round eight

Saturday (2.10pm)

BOMADERRY v NORTHERN DISTRICTS at Artie Smith Oval, KIAMA v PORT KEMBLA at Bonaira Oval, FIGTREE v NOWRA-ALBATROSS at Figtree Oval, WOLLONGONG v SHELLHARBOUR CITY at North Dalton Park, WOLLONGONG BULLDOGS bye.