NEW England Nomads “thumped” Inverell Saints in their Tamworth AFL major semi-final in Armidale on Saturday and Tamworth Kangaroos booted the Narrabri Eagles out of the premiership in Tamworth.
While the Nomads were registering a blistering 16.11 107 to 5.9 39 win at Bellevue Oval, Armidale, the Kangaroos were notching a 143-point win in their minor semi-final at No 1 Oval, Tamworth, 25.27 177 to 5.4 34.
The Nomads will now host a grand final in two weeks and chase a third successive TAFL flag while the Saints will host Tamworth Kangaroos in this Saturday’s preliminary final in Inverell.
“We got thumped,” a forthright Saints coach Nic Baird said.
“We started okay the first 15 minutes with our intensity and endeavour around the ball but they kicked a couple of goals just before the end of the quarter and we just couldn’t peg them back.
“Their midfield was far too good and dominated out of the middle.”
Dave Richards, who won the Gerry Griffiths Medal for leading goalkicker last week, spearheaded in the goal-kicking department again, booting six goals while coach Zac Economou and Weston Whitby kicked three goals apiece.
Isaiah Graham also kicked two while Clinton Ballagh, Mark Spencer, Andrew Garraud, Thomas Hunt and Soloman Hanks also excelled.
Saints’ Kieran Te Velde booted two goals in the disappointing display for a side that must regroup against a surging Roos who also kept their opposition to five goals.
Matt Hodge, Daniel Leon, Dan Overeem and Chris Pollock all kicked four majors while Carl Frazier and Ryan Painter kicked two goals each in a side which had 11 separate goalkickers.
“It was a great result for us,” Roos coach Brett Douglas said.
“The Eagles had nothing to lose but we were pretty good right across the park.”
He was delighted with the double digit goalkicking stats as well as the effort from ruckman Ryan Painter and defender Matt Hopton.
“Ryan was great in the ruck and up front again,” he said.
“And Matt had a big game at the back.
“It’s impressive that he’s had 13 years off and come back and playing so well and solid at the back.”
Eagles coach Todd Dunn was injured and tried to play but was forced off after a little over a quarter.
“It was disappointing way to finish,” he said of the loss.
“We had injuries at the wrong time but it was still a good season first year back.”