TAMWORTH FC might have the Southern Conference minor premiership safely in its keeping but up north it’s a different story, with North Armidale and Joeys FC locked in battle for the honours.
The Redmen have the upper hand by a point but will be powerless to stop Joeys leapfrogging them.
The Reds have the final round bye, along with FC.
“There’s a lot to play for,” Northern Inland Football general manager Steve Griffith said of what should be an exciting final round.
Some sides will be playing to make the four and others their position in the four.
A lot of the attention will be in Armidale and on Joeys’ match-up with Demon Knights.
As well as deciding the minor premiership, it also has repercussions as far as the four goes.
“DK just needs a draw to wrap up a finals berth and knock East Armidale out,” Griffith said.
“If Joeys win, East Armidale will sneak into fourth and DK will miss out on goal average.”
There is only room for one of them in the four, with the Redmen, Joeys and South Armidale having the top three sewn up.
It’s just the order to be settled.
Joeys need to win to secure their maiden minor
A draw won’t be enough to usurp the Redmen as they have a better goal average.
The Southern Conference is a bit clearer.
The four finalists are known, it’s just a matter of where they finish.
“North Companions need to win to wrap up second spot,” Griffith said.
They’re headed out to Narrabri.
“If they were to be beaten by Namoi, who have certainly given a few teams a fright, OVA could jump into second,” he said.
That’s provided they beat Gunnedah United in their clash in Tamworth.
Gunnedah is also finals- bound and, regardless of the result, will finish fourth.
Griffith said they did put to the clubs a top three, but they wanted a four, which effectively means eight qualify for the finals.
They will see the conferences crossing over, with first place in the Southern Conference hosting second in the Northern Conference, and vice versa.
And the same with third and fourth.
The losers of the one and two fixture will then play the winner of the third and fourth fixture, and so on.
In the other games today, Gunnedah Hawks head up to Moree and South Armidale is home to Guyra.