Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Clubmates clash in grand final

It will be mate against mate on Sunday when Shepparton United Blue and Red do battle in the Shepparton District Junior Football League under-14 grand final.

GREGOR MACTAGGART August 29, 2014 3:10am

Mate against mate is the scenario for Shepparton United’s two under-14 teams in Sunday’s Shepparton District Junior Football League grand final at Deakin Reserve.

Minor premier United Blue takes on underdog United Red in a rare intra-club battle for the flag from 9.15am.

The build-up to the decider has been a different one for United Red as coach Kevin Hicks said.

‘‘It’s business as usual for them (United Blue) because they finished on top,’’ Hicks said.

‘‘Because the top side gets all the luxuries, we’ve been forced into the Shepparton rooms on Sunday, we’re the ones wearing our away guernseys and this week we’ve had to train at a different ground.’’

United Blue will start the decider as warm favourite having progressed through to the grand final with an unbeaten record of 13-0.

But Red has been the toughest rival for its clubmate this season, having prevailed by nine points in round four before a gritty three-goal triumph in round 13.

Red will look to players such as talented midfielder-forward Kyle Clark, Ned Adams, Adam Pigatto and Fraser Hicks to provide the catalyst for an upset victory.

Chris Barzen’s Blue side has blossomed into a cracking football outfit.

Prime movers Jye Chalcraft, Daniel Bagley, Zane Barzen and spearhead James Clee have enjoyed fine seasons.

The clash is the first of four hotly-contested grand finals on a bumper day of footy.

Kyabram and Echuca square-off for the under-16 division one flag, in what appears a toss of the coin job considering the minor premier Bombers have lost the past two clashes against their Murray Bombers counterparts.

First bounce is at 3pm.

The two same clubs will meet in the Youth Girls’ grand final at 11am, with unbeaten Echuca the warm favourite.

The other grand final is in division two of the under-16 boys’ competition featuring Tatura and Rochester.

A solitary point separated the two sides in the qualifying final won by the Tigers and a repeat of that margin would make for a cracking contest.

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