Goulburn Valley on-baller Will Martiniello has bounced back from a heavy hit to be best-on-ground in the Goulburn Valley's interleague victory over Ballarat.DAMEN FRANCIS May 26, 2014 3:10am
Ballarat forward Brenton Riordan probably thought he was doing the right thing when he laid out Goulburn Valley on-baller Will Martiniello early in the third term at Deakin Reserve on Saturday.
He was wrong.
It was a firm, but fair hit, but Martiniello got back up and dominated the remainder of the AFL Victoria Country Championships clash.
The Benalla hard nut went on to win the interleague medal for best-on-ground, as Goulburn Valley romped to a 65-point win and booked a shot at winning back the No.
‘‘I thought ‘Brucey’ (Shepparton forward Daniel Willis) was probably a bit stiff not to win the medal, but I’ll take it,’’ Martiniello said.
‘‘It took me a bit to get into the game, but after that I got a bit of the footy, which was good.
‘‘My role as a small midfielder is just to dish the handballs off to open players and use my skills when I can.
‘‘The opportunity to represent your league, I’ll take that anytime. It’s a great privilege, a good honour and hopefully I can play again next year.’’
Martiniello, 23, returned to the Saints this season after five years in the VFL and after battling injuries in recent seasons he’s enjoying a new lease on life.
He was named in the best two players in each of undefeated Benalla’s five games this season.
‘‘My whole family is around the club now, my dad is midfield coach, James is captain of the club, Hayley’s back playing netball, my older brother’s involved, Mum’s involved and just being back with my family and a few mates I’m enjoying my footy more,’’ he said.
‘‘Last time I played with Anthony Stevens and I was a young boy and it was the best league in country footy, so I’ve come back, the club’s going well and I’m loving it down there.’’
Martiniello carried his blistering club form into Saturday’s interleague clash.
As usual, much of his work went unheralded, as it came at the bottom of the pack, but as the game wore on he got his hands on more of the ball around the stoppages and the home side lifted in the clearances as a result.
He was also the first link in several scoring chains — his tackle on the forward flank moments after he was floored by Riordan forced a stoppage Goulburn Valley scored from and his spearing pass to Daniel Lewis a short time later were part of a nine goals to three third term that broke the game open.
Goulburn Valley’s on-ball rotation included Benalla teammates Josh Marchbank and Luke Morgan and he paid tribute to those players as well as league stars Lewis, Brendon Hollow and Tim Looby, who he enjoyed playing alongside, rather than against.
Congratulations to all our award winners in Greater Shepparton. To find out more about what our amazing recipients have done, see tomorrow's Shepparton News.
Some of Australia’s best kayakers were in Yarrawonga on Sunday at the annual Yarrawonga-Mulwala Canoe Club’s Murray River Classic kayak race.
Volunteers at St Vincent de Paul in Tatura continue to be dismayed at the amount of unsuitable items dumped at the centre in Francis St.
When the wall is in sight, swimmer Nash Ramage finds that little bit extra.
Vandals have uprooted trees along the Campaspe River, leaving Rochester River Reserve Committee president Paul Poort furious and devastated.
Bianca Chatfield to speak at Kyabram Sportstar of the Year
Alan McLean looks back at Seymour's history of larrikings, louts and bushfires.
New tourism venture, Old Woperana Working Farm and Animal Nursery, is now open to the public.
Warm weather during the Christmas/New Year period saw large crowds enjoy facilities at the region’s major water storages.
Cobram bowler Chris Taylor has been bowling all along Australia’s east coast, and all for a good cause.
The Free family were overwhelmed when stolen fishing equipment was returned to them on Monday night.
SPC Ardmona’s managing director Peter Kelly will end his association with the company when his two-year commitment to the job expires at the end of March.
Salvation Army Benalla Majors Heather and Peter Ellis have relocated to Melbourne.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.