In driving rain and bitterly cold wind Rovers managed a convincing 35 point win over De La Salle. The conditions didn?t allow for a great display of skills, but this was the type of weather footy was meant to be played in and Rovers showed they were not about to let difficult conditions get in the way of a win.
The first quarter was fairly even, as the scores attest, however Rovers did have most of the play kicking into the wind. Smith, Cannell and Hille were good at working the lines and there was some good bodywork, particularly from Kettle down back. Schafer was reading the play beautifully from the back-line, setting-up play further down field.
In the second, with poor conditions persisting, Gleeson kicked Rovers only two goals for the quarter. He would end the game with six – a credit to his persistence and ability to handle not only difficult conditions, but also a quality opponent.
It was seven points the difference going into the second half – a huge advantage for Rovers considering it was a game where any score, goal or behind, was gold. The third quarter was the game breaker with Rovers – through Gleeson – kicking two goals in as many minutes straight out of the half-time break. When Kettle soccered a goal it was the third unanswered for the quarter and the margin had quickly increased to 25 points. Rovers mid-field was good in-tight, clearing the ball from the stoppages and working it forward. There was no fear as bodies went in hard at the contest – head and eyes on the footy. Zampaglione was good in close and skirting the packs, and Ross gave his usual poised performance.
Rovers scored two more goals in the last through a soccer off the ground from Curry and a snap from Gleeson. But the victory was marred somewhat by the injury to Smith – a courageous player for the team, who is renowned for his endeavour at the footy and his willingness to do the tough stuff.
Goals: Gleeson (6), Hendry, Kettle, Curry.
Best: Gleeson, Zampaglione, Cannell, Hille, Ross, Hendry, Smith, Suleyman.
1. 4. (10) 1. 4. (10)
3. 7. (25) 2. 6. (18)
7. 12. (54) 3. 11. (29)
9. 14. (68) 3. 15. (33)