Contributed by: Wesley Hull
Two games separate the top four from the bottom four teams after Round 4 of the NTFL season in Darwin last weekend. The Nightcliff Tigers, Southern Districts Crocs and Darwin Buffaloes each enjoyed big wins, whilst Waratah were too good in the end for a plucky Wanderers team.
A big seven-goal opening term by the Tigers set the tone for their clash against the Bombers at Tiwi Oval. From there, the Tigers extended their lead all day – except for a brief Bomber resurgence in the third term. Aided by a big 10-goal haul from Trent Melville, the Tigers ran out 47-point winners in front of the Tiwi crowd. Dion Munkara kicked five goals for the home team.
Waratah kept their season momentum going with a four goal win over Wanderers. Not much separated the teams all day, but Waratah were able to kick goals at crucial times to keep expanding their lead by degrees. The win sees Waratah with three victories from four starts and in a good position to consolidate their place in the top five. Former New York Magpie ruckman, Alex Aurrichio, played his fourth game for the club since arriving from the Northern Blues, kicking a goal.
St Mary’s have kept their season spluttering, going down to the Darwin Buffaloes by 55 points at TIO Stadium. Competitive in the first and last quarters, the Saints middle quarters let them down conceding nine goals to three. Darwin continued to build their advantage all day after leading at the first break and setting up their third win of the season as well as holding second place on the ladder ahead of Tigers and Waratah. Saints already face a big battle from here to win enough games to challenge for finals. Achievable, but increasingly difficult.
Southern Districts Crocs remain undefeated after their big win against the Palmerston Magpies. The game was over by half-time as a contest with a twelve goal to one half. The Magpies lifted in the third term to almost break even before a Croc rampage in the final term saw them record a 93-point win. The damage could have been worse but for inaccuracy from the Crocs as they kicked 9 behinds in the final term as well as four goals.
Next weekend will see some potentially season-defining games. Waratah can keep their run going if they can down St Mary’s. Another loss for the Saints will hurt. In arguably the match of the round, second plays third with the Nightcliff Tigers hosting the Darwin Buffaloes. Southern Districts will be after five wins in a row against Wanderers, but it won’t be easy. The winless Tiwi Bombers will look to open their account against the Palmerston Magpies, though a Palmerston win will have them knocking on the door of the top five.
World Footy News