Hawks and Eagles clash on footy field | Mininera and District Football League

CONTEST: Tatyoon's Tim McDougall evades an Ararat Eagles opponent during a match between the two teams last season. Picture: Peter Pickering
CONTEST: Tatyoon's Tim McDougall evades an Ararat Eagles opponent during a match between the two teams last season. Picture: Peter Pickering

Tatyoon will travel to Alexandra Oval to face the Ararat Eagles in Mininera and District Football League round one action on Saturday.

Both teams have new coaches going into the game with some uncertainty surrounding how the squads will go.

Brearley has taken over from Adrian Pilgrim and said he is excited to finally get the season started after a long preseason.

“I have lost a little bit of sleep with things running through my head and trying to sort out the last couple of things out,” he said.

“There is a few nerves there but I think we have prepared well enough during preseason.”

The Hawks will have the majority of their list available for selection for the season opener.

The first year Tatyoon coach said he is looking forward to testing out the new structures on the league’s biggest ground.

“I am pretty happy to be starting at Alexandra Oval, our game is built around space and quick ball movement and I think the oval will suit us in Ararat,” he said.

“I am happy with how we went during the practice game last week, but we will look to introduce new things in as the season progresses which should translate to all grounds.”

Despite the Eagles struggling during recent years, the 2016 premiership team will not underestimate the home team.

“There definitely can be a risk of complacency, I have spoken to players about that and we will just focus on our own game,” he said.

“We have systems and structures we want to implement and KPIs we want to hit during the day.

“Throughout the whole day, regardless of what is happening on the scoreboard, we will just continue to move the ball the way we want to be doing.”

Both teams will no doubt be hoping for a win to start the season with the visitors to go into the match as heavy favourites.

Brearley said it was important to get early season wins on the board to build confidence.

“We have got a couple of tough weeks coming up, so if you start the season 0-2 it is hard to catch up again during the season,” he said.

The Eagles have some new players of their own who will be on display with George Cooper and Scott Jackson looking to try some new things after taking over from Brian Jenkins as co-coaches for the 2018 season.

The team made some significant improvement during 2017 and the team should be confident that if they continue to put in four quarter efforts, the win tally should increase again with Saturday’s clash against Tatyoon being the first chance. 

First bounce is at 2.15pm.