By Gary Stocks

A mountain or a molehill?

That question will be answered at Charles Riley Reserve tomorrow when North Beach confronts close rival Whitford in the WA Amateur Football League.

Both in a geographical and historical sense the Warriors and the Beach have been combatants of  begrudging respect and this clash has profound implications for both clubs as they seek to establish a foothold on a place in the top five.

The O’Rourke Realty A-Grade team was sailing along smoothly until a poor performance against University, winner of the past two premierships, last Saturday.

David Hynes, his coaching staff and the players, suspect it was an aberration and will be looking for affirmation of that view in this encounter. Last week’s effort certainly looked out of character and good teams rebound.

That capacity to respond will certainly be aided by the return of State Under-23 representatives Josh Stott, who was adjudged WA’s best player, and Michael Italiano, who benefitted greatly from the experience of playing representative football.

In addition to that experienced utility player Michael Taylor, pacy midfielder Josh Bollen and defender Matt Irvine have been elevated.

The Credent Financial Services A-Reserves, who received a fright last week, will get back Jackson Harwood, Ned Melvin and Michael Bryan as they strive to remain unbeaten. University lost by the narrowest of margins last Saturday and that should also serve as a shake up.

The Nuchange Phil Scott Colts have been in solid form in recent weeks and see this game as an interesting challenge. With a cluster of players resuming, they will be anxious to claim the points and keep alive final five aspirations.

The Townley Group D1-Grade, Clipstar D1-Reserves and Tuck Plumbing Brett Jones Colts all face significant challenges against North Fremantle at Percy Doyle Oval while Pana’s Pool Supplies E2-Grade will confront Coolbellup at Tempest Park.

Round 9 fixtures
O’Rourke Realty A-Grade
North Beach v Whitford, Charles Riley Reserve, 2.30pm
Credent Financial Services A-Reserves
North Beach v Whitford, Charles Riley Reserve, 12.35pm
Nuchange Phil Scott Colts
North Beach v Whitford, Charles Riley Reserve, 10.45am
Townley Group D1-Grade
North Beach v North Fremantle, Percy Doyle Oval, 2.30pm
Clipstar D1-Reserves
North Beach v North Fremantle, Percy Doyle Oval, 12.35pm
Tuck Plumbing Brett Jones Colts
North Beach v North Fremantle, Percy Doyle Oval, 10.45am
Pana’s Pool Supplies E2-Grade
Coolbellup v North Beach, Tempest Park, 2.30pm