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Where is it being played?: Ellinbank Rec Reserve

What time is the seniors game scheduled to start?: 2:10pm

Selected sides: 

Ellinbank side unavailable at time of post. Click the image to check for potential updates




The Eagles will enter favourites against the Tigers. When they last met in round 15 last year Ellinbank won by 97 points. This time around under new coach Josh Collie expect the margin to be much closer. It will be the Tigers first test of their improvement. Its half a dozen new recruits bring a few hundred games of experience into its line-up. Perhaps Ben Mitchell a ruckman from Pearcedale will be the stand out of the newcomers. Hard to get a read on Ellinbank after its performances last year. These included a 57 point loss to Neerim South in round 13 and then four weeks later beat the eventual premiers Nyora. Given it is the opening round Ellinbank should be injury free and the depth and talent in its line up too strong at home for last season’s cellar dwellers.


The return to the club of classy running half back Josh Peterson will be a real asset. Shaun Phelan and Tim Mashado both showed pace and creativity across the forward line in 2018 but the Bankers still look like they need more leg speed through the middle if they are to threaten the top sides. If the Bankers can get a full season from its experienced quartet of Ben Wragg, Adam Cook, Tom Johnson and Mick Urie it is a shoo-in for finals footy but that is a big if based on their availability in 2018.


With a handful of mature recruits the Tigers will not be easy beats this year. Whether the newcomers can fill the forward and midfield woes last year and push for a top five position remains to be seen. Ruck recruit Ben Mitchell, 28, has had VFL senior experience with Frankston and should be prominent and also will double as a strong forward option. Troy McPherson and Josh Brown – both outstanding last year will relish the newcomers to lend support. Still got a lot of ground to make up having an average losing margin of 55 points in 2018.

EDFL website

Where is it being played?: Neerim South Rec Reserve

What time is the seniors game scheduled to start?: 2:10pm

Selected sides: 

Neerim-Neerim South side unavailable at time of post. Click the image to check for any potential updates



With plenty of experience returning to the Bill Cumming Oval the Cats shape as a handy side. If the Crows are not on their game an upset would not be a surprise. The return of Calum Shiels will provide stability in defence and now veteran Chris Urie still has plenty to offer midfield and in attack. Love the way Jackson Ward and Nathan Bayne go about their footy as well. Longwarry tick all the right boxes in attack, through the middle and in defence. Tye Holland returns to Longwarry and should combine well with Russell Lehmann and share the midfield grunt work. The three pronged attack of Coach Daniel Fry, Braydon McHugh and youngster Jedd Serong, who has returned from Warragul will prove the difference.


Have recruited well getting back many former top players led by Chris Urie, Cal Shiels and Tyssen Morrow. Their presence around Jackson Ward and Nathan Bayne will ensure the Cats field a more balanced team this year. Looms as a serious finals prospect. Many youngsters all made good strides last year while 2018 thirds Bill Cumming medallist Rhys George and Cooper Clancy look bona fide seniors. Should rise a fair way up the ladder.


Has unfinished business after it was desperately unlucky in last year’s grand final? The return of experienced midfielder Tye Holland (who played 176 games at Longwarry before 59 at the Dusties) and 20 year old forward Jedd Serong will be a plus. The later will give the Crows a third forward to complement Brayden McHugh and Daniel Fry who bagged 125 goals between them last year. Going to be hard for the opposition clubs to match up against three forwards fed a steady stream of entries.

EDFL website

Where is it being played?: Nyora Rec Reserve

What time is the seniors game scheduled to start?: 2:10pm

Selected sides: 

Click the image to view on the official league website




The Saints will unfurl its premiership flag before it goes to work to press for back-to-back premierships. Its opponents Buln Buln are always competitive. In recent seasons the Lyrebirds often push all comers for two to three quarters but can’t win the four points on offer. In fact Buln Buln lost their round two encounter against Nyora last year by only three points. It will be hoping young forwards Charlie Park and Isaac Lalor can develop into good long term forward targets. Defender Tom Axford is one of the most under rated in the league but faces a difficult day as the home side is likely to generate far more entries into its attacking fifty. The constant supply from Coach Ryan Spooner, Dylan & Jesse Heylen, Rhys Bancroft and Kallon Rigby will wear down the Buln Buln defence. Nyora to win comfortably.


Were the feel good story of 2018. However backing up is often hard. Ryan Spooner has replaced Fia Too Too as coach. Will enter with the tag of the team to beat. Disciplined tight defence and smart heads around the midfield last year led by Dylan Heylen and Rhys Bancroft will see that the Saints go deep into the finals. Word around the traps is the new recruits will make an impact.


Still appear to be screaming out for more goal scoring power. Midfield and defence was honest as the day was long last year but not sure if this year’s list is any better. Plenty of good youngsters in the thirds last year should move into the seniors but expect the Lyrebirds to be more a nuisance for the teams that make the top five rather than make it. Heavy reliance again on evergreen ruckman Matt Gray while Trent and Hayden Baker, Jake Pierrehumbert and Charlie Park all have the ability to take their game to another level.

EDFL website

Where is it being played?: Poowong Rec Reserve

What time is the seniors game scheduled to start?: 2:10pm

Selected sides: 

Click the image to view on the official league website




Widely viewed as the match of the day. Both sides were finalists in 2018 and with plenty to prove. The Magpies were big improvers in 2018 while Catani did not reproduce the form that saw it win the 2017 grand final. Like the way the Poowong youngsters are coming along while intercept defender Jayden Sullivan and smalls Jack Hazendonk and Tom Wyatt never play a bad game. Utility Chris Robinson is be a big loss. For Catani expect the usual suspects Paul Pattison and Nick Visser to carry the brunt of the midfield load. Cody Banbury and Dylan Williams took steps forward to share the workload last year. At home the Magpies should run out narrow winners.


Look like they can make inroads on their improvement last year. Robinson is a big loss and the same for Ben Hancock although he did not play a lot of games last year. To compensate there still looks plenty of upward scope in Tom Wyatt, Jayden Chiavaroli, Jayden Sullivan and Josh McNally.


The 2017 premiers have still got enough talent and experience to play finals football. Paul Pattison and Nick Visser are amongst the premier midfielders in the competition and barring injury their presence will carry the Blues a long way. Defender Dale Johnson is often unobtrusive but efficient taking on the best forward in the opposition and shutting him down. Young ruck Jackson Caddy shapes as a star and the Blues boast more than a handful of thirds from last year led by Kiam Rose and Jason Cox that can make their presence felt at senior level this year. The Blues defence was too loose against the better sides last year and it will need to fix this aspect of its game to play finals.

EDFL website

Where is it being played?: Dowton Park, Yarragon

What time is the seniors game scheduled to start?: 2:10pm

Selected sides: 

Click the image to view on the official league website




Fingers crossed this is the first game of a strong rivalry between the neighbouring clubs over many years. From all reports the Panthers have recruited well. First year Coach Simon Noy is confident his charges will prove to be competitive. Expect ex Bunyip player Brad Wolfe and Captain Mitch Jolly to be prominent. Darcy Jones and Ben Monckton both with some senior experience at Cora Lynn should also be handy recruits for the home side. The Bombers disappointed last year. After winning three of its first four games it fell apart. It has picked up Patrick Chin, Casey Thomsen and Mark Engley who offer well over 300 games of senior experience but to offset their presence it has lost Luke Lange, Mitch Dance and Brent Simons. Yarragon to make its EDFL debut with a victory.


Yarragon enter the league. First season coach Simon Noy expects his team to be very competitive. Have lost a few players from last year but appear to have recruited quite well. Many EDFL supporters will be familiar with their 2018 B&F Brad Wolfe who played at Bunyip while Tim Farthing (former Ellinbank) and Dean Fitzgerald (ex Bunyip) are two key defenders. Captain Mitch Jolly kicked 26 goals last season and is expected to be prominent across the forward line. Expect Yarragon to produce a few upsets but may struggle to make the top five.


Need more run through the midfield. Ben Campbell was terrific last year but had little support. Ruckman Logan Deschepper showed plenty on occasions as did Nathan and Tom Campbell. New recruits Casey Thomsen, Mark Engley and Patrick Chin provide plenty of experience and the later two in particular should he handy around the goals. Nilma leaked goals too easily in 2018.

EDFL website


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