Twas a turn in the weather after the last couple of antarctic weekends, as the sun came out as the race to the ‘Big Dance’ begins.
Johnny and Bart were thrilled after the excitement on the political stages this week, with more physicality than an A-grade men’s hockey grand final being shown on the partyroom floor and Scott Morrison doing a Bradbury and scooting through with a classic where-did-he-come-from move to seal the top job.
The sun was warm; snakes are on the move everywhere across our brown land; blossoms are in full bud and it’s hockey finals …what a time to be alive.
And the finals tossed up some upsets which make this time of year typically more thrilling than ever.
Let’s begin our run down from the start of the weekend and go vertically this time.
The Parrots took the Maggies on for the privilege of playing in the final arena; it was a tough game and goals were scored quickly in the first couple of minutes.
The little piebalds couldn’t hold their lead and the Parrots’ attack slipped the winner through late in the game, to continue on.
The Young Collegians met the Redlegs in the bottom final and goals were also aplenty here; with a very even game, Gawler scored a blinder late in the game to seal the chance to go through to the next round against Tanunda.
This will be a good game - my money is on Tanunda but every game is on its own merits now.
The under 15s was the final minor round: the little Canaries played the little Maggies and the star of the golden side sealed the victory after a tense and great game to watch.
The Parrots squawked in victory against My Stripey Mates from Up North in another tense game.
“The sun is warm; snakes are on the move; blossoms are in full bud and it’s hockey finals …what a time to be alive”
AMU has earned a week off now to go straight through to the bg one; and Nuri play Clare Districts in the play-off.
This will be an interesting game and my money is very hesitant to go to either side; CDU are a more rounded team but no-one can deny the Longo factor.
Keep him out of the game and they will be through. It’s a tough assignment though.
The Under 18 competition was another minor round finish: the Piebald crew sealed the points over the Canaries to go to the grand final; and My Stripey Mates ended their season with a crushing victory over the Parrots.
Clare Districts now meets Nuri next week for the chance to play on.
My sly fiver is on the kids in blue and orange.
The Parrots took on My Stripey Mates in a fiery clash but came up short.
Clare Districts advance to the next round; while in the top game, a full-strength Collegian side took an undermanned beady-eyed boys side to go through to the big day.
This was an upset on my slate, and it was a very tough game until the final quarter of the game.
Can Tanunda regroup to defend their title?
My money is on them over Clare but, once again, finals are a funny beast and anything can happen.
The B-women threw up a huge upset with the Parrots wrestling the girls from the impossible main street to submission.
Any team in this grade has the capacity on the day, but the Gawler girls are firm favourites in the blocks.
The Piebald girls finished with a strong win over the Old Collegians to advance through. They play the Gawler girls in what will be a very interesting game to watch.
Not decided who my money will be on here … I’m going to slide it over to the monochromed ones in a squeaked finish.
Both A grade comps finished with minor rounds this week: with the top women, Gawler, finishing with a bye and going straight through.
Tanunda eked a win over Nuri but they play again next week and they should advance through.
In the major men’s competition the Parrots had the bye while the Maggies and Canaries battled in the Aviary.
Another tense game; Nuri hit the backboard one last time and earn a week off.
Tanunda play AMU next round; AMU should win but there is an interesting factor here in that the colourful boys haven’t been playing at their all-destroying best and the monochromed ones have been playing some smart hockey at the right end of the season. I’m tipping an upset here.
As always, come out for a gander at the ‘Best Sport in The World’ and cheer your colours on.
All clubs are represented in the next phase in some way, so throw your support behind them and slip a sly bet on next week’s winners.