The Western Magpies face a dangerous Broadbeach Cats outfit when they host the sixth placed side at Chelmer on Saturday.
The Pies come off a resounding victory over Wilston Grange while Broadbeach will be full of confidence after being the first team to lower Labrador's colours last week in a major upset. The Cats are 2 matches outside the five and will be gunning for another upset win as they face a weekly elimination final against the third placed Pies to keep them in striking distance of the finals.
The Magpies Round 3 win at Broadbeach opened their 2015 account and was the first of seven wins in a row. That was a tight tussle until late in the final quarter, so coach Glenn Humphrey is under no illusions the Cats pose a big threat and has worked during the week to ensure his side does not have a let down and are prepared for a tough contest.
The Pies have three changes to the side which defeated Wilston Grange last week with Redlands based players in full-forward Jordan Bain and half back Jack Goodall coming into the side and utility Richard Wenham recovering from injury after missing one week. Out are Ruckman Hayden Thick who is unavailable, forward Matt Thompson goes back to the Reserves to gain some match fitness after missing four weeks prior to last week and half back Sean Mewing who makes way for Goodall despite recent good form.
The Pies selectors have opted for Alex Dickfos to support Dom Beer in ruck with Jordan Bain slotting into full-forward. Bain played most of the 2014 season for the Pies and was runner up in the QAFL goal kicking last year.
It was the pace through the midfield of Aaron Maricic and Sunny Aneet that sparked the Pies to victory at Broadbeach and the Pies will be keen to see them open up the Cats defence again on Saturday.
Maricic will be better for the run last week after being out of the side for many weeks while on Queensland under 18 duties. Both have been a little reticent to take their opponents on and once they gain the confidence to run and carry forward will be even more damaging
They still need the grunt of skipper Callum Carseldine and the ball winning skill of Tim McEvoy to give them space to start their damaging runs.
Up forward Joel Workman relished another chance and repaid the selectors faith with four goals and his forward pressure is vital for the Pies. Matt Hockley has done all that has been asked of him at CHF in the absence of the injured Tom Michael and the class of Val Pope complements them and adds to the goalkicking mix.
The back line has been miserly with the exception of the two Labrador games and if those two matches are taken out of the equation the Pies are averaging under 10 goals (58.5 points) against in the other matches.
Luke Scott marked everything that came his way last week and with the aerial strength and run of Matt Davis and Chris Hunt and defensive aerial skills (punching) of Doug Lawrence the back line will be keen to maintain that record.
Luke Mitchell has been in fine form as small defender then linking through the midfield and with the return of Wenham the Pies will have good defensive rebound.
The Western Magpies can consolidate third place on the ladder but cannot underestimate a dangerous Broadbeach outfit keen to take another big scalp and keep their own finals hopes alive.
Western Magpies vs Broadbeach Cats - Chelmer, Saturday July 17th @ 2pm
B: Richard Wenham - Doug Lawrence - Luke Mitchell
HB: Matt Davis - Chris Hunt - Luke Scott
C: Aaron Maricic - Ben Jeanke-Cain - Majok Aneet
HF: Sam Copland - Matt Hockley - Joel Workman
F: Val Pope - Jordan Bain (R) - Jak Williams (R)
Foll: Dom Beer - Tim McEvoy - Callum Carseldine (c)
Int: Drew Mitchell - Alex Dickfos - Jake Goodall (R) - Brady Allen