Contributed by: Wesley Hull
Waratah have come from behind to snatch a thrilling win against the Nightcliff Tigers in the Round 3 action of the NTFL. Their win finished off a big round of footy in Darwin with St Mary’s snaring their first win of the season, Southern Districts Crocs holding off a gallant Tiwi Bombers and the Darwin Buffaloes too good for the Palmerston Magpies.
In the Sunday match, however, the Tigers led Waratah almost all day. Going into the match, Nightcliff were slight favourites after an undefeated start to the season. All was on track until three-quarter time with the Tigers still 20 points ahead. But Waratah came out onto the field full of fire and closed the gap. Waratah were down by less than a goal with less than five minutes to play, but a crumbed goal in the goal-square put Waratah ahead. Only moments later, Waratah kicked another to seal the game, and their second win of the season.
St Mary’s went into their Saturday match at TIO Stadium under huge pressure. Winless and desperate for points, the Saints looked to have squandered a great chance when they kicked seven behinds in the opening quarter to lead by just a point. Wanderers took advantage of the Saints’ yips in front of goal and clawed ahead, leading by a point themselves at the final break. But St Mary’s kicked better, and hard, in the final term to run out 13-point victors.
Southern Districts are the only undefeated team after three rounds, downing the Tiwi Bombers in a tough match. Never at any state did the Crocs look like they had the Bombers’ measure. The Tiwi crew just stayed in the match right up to the end. Whilst the Crocs won every quarter, none were by more than two goals. The Bombers just kept nipping at their heels. In the end, the Crocs snuck away to win by four goals, but not without a fight.
Similarly, it took a big last quarter for the Darwin Buffaloes to put away the Palmerston Magpies. Less than two goals separated both teams right up until the final change. Leading by 15 points, the Buffaloes put the hammer down in the last quarter, keeping Palmerston scoreless and ramming home five goals of their own to run away to a 49-point win – a margin that doesn’t reflect the fight of the Magpies.
Round 4 will see the Tiwi Bombers host the Nightcliff Tigers at Tiwi Oval in Wurramiyanga on Saturday. The TIO Stadium double-header will feature Waratah up against Wanderers and St Mary’s up against the Darwin Buffaloes. Sunday sees the Southern Districts Crocs taking on the Palmerston Magpies.
World Footy News