GRAND FINAL PREVIEW AND PREDICTION: Men’s Division One
Written by Michael Shillito
Division One Grand Final
Pennant Hills Demons vs. Sydney University – Sunday, 9 September at 11.10am at Blacktown International Sportspark
Division One silverware will be on the line at Blacktown this Sunday when Pennant Hills meet Sydney University for the Premiership.
The Demons finished second after the regular season, but defeated Sydney University in the Semi-Final to be first through to the Grand Final. A weeks rest will prime them for this encounter, and we have no doubt that they will be ready to go.
Firepower on the forward line will be essential, and the Demons are fortunate to have the experience of Peter Carey steering the ship up forward. He’ll be looking to add to the 42 goals he has kicked so far this season, and in Evan Danilo he’ll have a handy backup.
There’s plenty of other contributors to the Demon cause who the Students will need to keep quiet. Adam Smith and Harry Rivers have been solid performers in this division all season, while David Smith, another former Premier Division player, has handed down plenty of experience in this division in 2018.
Sydney University were Minor Premiers, but had to go the hard way to the Grand Final. After going down to the Demons in the Semi-Final, the Students had to get over North Shore in last week’s Preliminary Final, but in the end they managed to get through.
The Students have shared the goal-kicking responsibilities this season, and have plenty of handy targets. Josh Cutrupi and Gabriel Robbie will keep the Demon defenders on their toes all day.
Around the ground, Jack Hollywood will be keen to put on a show, while John Walsh and James Nettle have put in plenty of hard work all season for the Students. There’s no shortage of players in the blue and gold hoops who are capable of rising to the occasion.
The two clubs met twice during the home and away season, with the Students taking the points on both occasions. In the opening round of the season, the Students got up by 29 points at Mike Kenny Oval, and then got up by six points at Sydney University Oval No. 1 in Round 8. But the Demons turned the tables in a thriller in the Semi-Final at Rosedale, getting over the line by three points.
This one should also go down to the wire, and could go either way. But the Students have been the dominant team for most of the season in this division, and look to have just enough to get the job done this time.
Prediction – Sydney University by four points.