It lived up to the billing, as Bunbury and Harvey Brunswick Leschenault fought out a thriller at PC Payne Park on Sunday, before the biggest crowd of the round, with the match played on a very wet surface as the final game of round five in the SWFL Dale Alcock Homes SW Premiership Season.
The Lions started well, kicking five goals in the first quarter, leading by 13 points at the first break. By half time, the margin had extended to 17 points, with the Lions still leading by 15 points at the final change. Bunbury though, would storm home, kicking the only three goals of the final term, and in a tense final few minutes, both teams had opportunities to win the match, with the Bulldogs getting up by four points. Bunbury’s score of 9.9.63 was the highest score of the round, remarkable considering the conditions.
Bunbury will head to Collie in Round six, while the Lions, who dropped to third as a result of the loss, will return home to take on Busselton, who find themselves second after a win against South Bunbury.
In Sunday’s other fixture, Collie Eagles hosted Augusta Margaret River, with the temperature failing to reach 10 degrees, and neither team scored a goal in the first
quarter, with the Hawks held scoreless. The ground was in excellent condition, but you wouldn’t think so if you looked at the half time score line, which shows both teams could only kick one goal each in the second quarter, with the home team leading by a solitary point. The margin extended to 4 points at three quarter time, with the home team still holding a slender advantage. That advantage quickly disappeared in the final term, with the Hawks kicking five goals to win by 20 points. After a promising start to the season, Collie have lost their last two games, while the Hawks have recovered their season, clinching their second win on the trot and this Saturday will face Carey Park on Saturday, while Collie will have a tough battle against ladder leaders, Bunbury on Sunday.
Harvey Bulls hosted Eaton Boomers on Saturday night, and suffered another close loss, going down to the Boomers by 17 points, with the match well and truly in the balance until midway through the last quarter. Greg Humphries kicked three goals for the Boomers, while Jay Collard kicked four of the Bulls six goals.
In another low scoring affair, Donnybrook got the four points against Carey Park, also winning by 17 points. Carey Park, who were very
inaccurate kicking 4.10.34 and had their chances in the final term, with the Dons victory keeping them in touch with the top five. Donnybrook will head to Glen Huon Reserve to battle Eaton Boomers with the match a mini final. If Eaton lose, they will also lose touch with the five, with a win almost ensuring fifth spot will not be determined until the final round of the season.
Not for the first time, Busselton were very inaccurate in front of goals, but albeit in very windy conditions, accounted for South Bunbury at Sir Stewart Bovell Park on Saturday, winning by 26 points. The Tigers looked like causing an upset when they trailed by just two points at half time, but they only managed one goal in the second half, with the Magpies victory enough to see them finish the round in second place, and will take on the Lions at Brunswick on Saturday in a crucial fixture.