Border Mail – Round 7 – Preview

CDHBU co-coach Mick Collins isn’t surprised his younger sister, Karina, is seizing the moment in the AFL North East Border Female Football League.

That chance arrived this season at Thurgoona.

As well as assisting Tim Madden with coaching, Karina is the competition’s leading goalkicker with 18 majors in six matches.

“Karina’s seen a lot of football over the years,” Mick, 29, said.

“She’s always known her stuff.

“I never had another brother so whenever I wanted a kick I’d grab her.

“Since she could walk she always had a football in her hands or a cricket bat or ball and she’s always played footy with the boys.

“She was outdoing them too and then obviously netball and other sports took over when she got a bit older.”

The pair have regular Tuesday night debriefings about their sides’ performances with Karina currently holding the family bragging rights.

The Bulldogs are sitting on top of the ladder with five straight wins while CDHBU has managed two victories and several honourable losses.

Collingwood defender Ilish Ross and rising star Alyce Parker have been dominating.

“Mick always offers up a bit of advice which I try and take on board,” Karina, 25, said

“I tell him our side is better drilled.

“Tim Madden has been great this year and growing up Mick obviously taught me a lot as well.

“I’m just absolutely rapt footy is on the Border for women.”

Karina, who played her first competitive football match while holidaying in Darwin six years ago, grew up playing netball for CDHBU in the winter months.

Mick and Jeremy Stevenson are in their second season as co-coaches of CDHBU with the Power facing the ultimate challenge against reigning premier Osborne on Saturday.

“We haven’t been that far off in a couple of our games,” Mick said.

“If we play our best footy we aren’t far away, but we can’t afford to slacken off at all.

“Osborne’s obviously a good side and we’ll have to play well.”

Mick is penciled in to run the water for Karina’s side in coming weeks and hopes he doesn’t jinx their winning streak.

“I think I’ll be more of a hindrance than help,” he said.

HENTY coach Joel Price believes the next fortnight could shape the Swampies’ season.

With the ladder leader meeting Rand-Walbundrie-Walla and Holbrook before the general bye, Price said any slip-up would see them drop back to the chasing pack.

“We’ve been happy with our start but the next two weeks will be tough and then we play some of the other top sides as well,” Price said.

“You can’t afford to slacken off at all.

“I think the results have already shown that.”

Henty’s impressive start to the season has been driven by recruits Daniel and Dale Cox and Damian Cupido with Giants’ utility Brian Lieschke set to get first crack at the former AFL player.

The Giants are likely to regain several key players including Ryan Lavery and Kye Davies for the all-important clash.

Meanwhile, Howlong’s playing stocks have been hurt by Jay Koehler suffering a leg injury.