Beach faces stern test

Alex Billi...poised for his senior debut
Alex Billi...poised for his senior debut
North Beach faces its sternest test of the season to date when it hosts Collegians at Charles Riley Reserve in three grades tomorrow.
With Collegians unbeaten in both the A-Grade and A-Reserves and traditionally boasting a powerful colts team, the Beach will need to be at its peak to come away with points in any of those contests.
The club is looking forward to that challenge across all grades. Regardless of the level of football, challenging the competition benchmark is the key driver and all players are anxiously anticipating the clash.
Collegians have conquered last year’s premiers (University) and runners-up (Mt Lawley) in their three-game streak to start the season, so unquestionably are the early-season pace-setters, although Trinity-Aquinas also remain unbeaten.
The Beach has made four changes to the team which eclipsed Maddington at Harmony Fields last Saturday, with a couple of emerging players poised to debut. Last year’s colts captain Kris Hackett and another recent colts graduate Alex Billi have both been selected.
In addition ruckman Dave Martin returns after spending last weekend in his home town of Sydney for a family function and experienced defender Brent Stockden has also been elevated.
With changes to the senior team, that has a cascading effect down the grades, meaning there are seven changes to the A-Reserves and a similar number of changes to the D-Grade combination. Opportunities have been created, so much interest will be generated across all teams.
Even at this early stage of the season, the Phil Scott Colts face an important challenge against Collegians. The Tigers broke through for their first win against Maddington last week and will be looking to build upon that performance, particularly the second half exhibition.
The challenge for the colts is that the majority of the team is comprised of bottom age players who are starting to come to terms with the level of the competition.
The Brett Jones Colts, coming off strong consecutive wins, face a challenge against University, another club which traditionally carries great depth through its colts teams. The North Beach squad boasts similar depth with at least a dozen players in the Brett Jones team who could stake a claim in the Phil Scott side.
The D1-Grade and D1-Reserves will also play University at McGillivray while the E2 boys will travel to High Wycombe in what looms as an adventurous journey.