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Coopers Preview - New Look Woodies approach Round 1

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Coopers Preview - New Look Woodies approach Round 1

Andrew Thomson

New Look Woodsmen take on Ormeau Bulldogs

The new look Woodsmen will look resplendent in the traditional black & white Sherwood stripes for their Round 1 encounter vs the Ormeau Bulldogs tonight.

The Woodies have merged back into the Magpie fold in 2017 and will be looking to continue their form, having not missed the finals in 10 seasons.  Not only will they be sporting a new look guernsey, they will be playing in a new competition and will have 6 debutants in Round 1.  The growing popularity of the Friday night football competition has seen AFLQ split in the competition in half, with the Woodies playing in the stronger QFA division, which disappointingly only includes 6 teams, including the newly formed Ormeau Bulldogs, Zillmere, Morningside, Sandgate and UQ – while the lesser division will feature 8 teams.

The Woodies will be without long time skipper Sean Toohey, but the team still includes a few Woodsmen veterans from the inaugural squad such as Kiran Verma on a wing, Tim Green at Centre Half Back and Andrew Thomson shouldering the ruck duties.

Making their Woodsmen debuts will be Jay Muscat (North Footscray), Sam Banim (University Cougars / Toowoomba), Sam Long  (Mt Gravatt who is the Senior Magpies Assistant coach in 2017), Rick Masterson (new to the game), Lachlan Woods (Magpies Seniors) and Blake McClennan (Magpies Reserves).

There is also a strong Sherwood flavour to the squad with other club juniors/seniors such as Chris Mihalopoulous as playing coach, Brett McEvoy, Greg Matthews, Tristan Mathews, Dylan Mudge, Sam Curtis, Gerard Moore, Daniel Hitchcock also part of the side.

Ormeau Bulldogs as a brand new outfit are an unknown quantity, but must be treated with caution as they have been accepted into the stronger division with no prior senior playing history – which is a sign of some likely strong recruiting!

The Woodsmen will be looking to their strong midfield to give them first use of the footy with Lachlan Woods and Blake McClennan providing strong inside grunt, while Sam Curtis can get on the outside and use his exceptional speed and quality delivery off either foot to the likes of Moore, Long and Mihalopoulos who will be the nucleus of a strong forwardline.

Missing a couple of regular key small defenders, the Woodies will be looking to chop off most attacks across half back with Tim Green’s marking power and the footy smarts of Blake Barkley and Brett McEvoy to mop things up at ground level, with ‘Noodles’ lethal left footy a likely weapon coming out of the back half.  If the ball gets deep, the always improving Paul Eaton will be put to work with his long clearing kicks, superb closing speed and attacking instincts to launch some Magpie attacks from deep in defence.

Western Magpies (Woodsmen) vs Ormeau Bulldogs at Ormeau Sports Park, Friday April 21 @ 730pm