‘Time to step up’: Nelson


YENDA Tigers coach Henry Nelson has called on struggling local teams to “raise the bar” set by Hanwood FC and Yoogali SC as debate continues over the future structure of the first-grade competition.

Nelson said it is up to the teams in the lower reaches of the ladder to catch up to the two former Regional Premier League sides, who have completely dominated the first seven rounds and sit in equal first place.

His comments come after GDFA president Matthew Curran last week told The Area News that the association was examining different methods in bringing greater equalisation to the league, but that “blowouts happen in every code at every level”.

Nelson said: “At the end of the day they’ve scored 61 goals between them and that’s nobody’s fault but the teams that they’ve played, ourselves included.

“If that’s the level, we’ve got to step to it. For everyone below those two, their training sessions have got to be more intense – I don’t know if they are already, I haven’t seen any aside from our own.

“We’ve all got to be a little bit more intense in what we’re doing and concentrate on the areas that we’re not concentrating on at the minute. Everyone else has got to raise the bar a little bit.”

Yenda has won four of its six games this season, losing to both YSC and Hanwood FC by hefty margins.

But Nelson believes the race for the GDFA title is still “wide open”, despite a lopsided start to the new campaign.

“We’re only six points behind them, so are Yoogali Football Club, and Griffith City are only nine points behind,” he said.

“It’s not about catching the top two, it’s about making it into the top four. If you make the finals you can do what Hanwood Juniors did from fourth last year and still win it.

“I know about the RPL, but we’re not in that competition anymore. People need to pull the finger out and realise the competition is only going to grow stronger from here, which will be brilliant for the town.

“Don’t get me wrong – it’s an excellent step for a team to represent Griffith in another competition. But everybody should be concentrating on building this competition first before we do that.”

Yenda Tiger’s Dean Foscarini (left) comes up against Griffith City’s Ross Panebianco.

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