12 JUL 2019 BY: DAN KELLY (NEAFL MEDIA)
NEAFL ROUND 15
Saturday, July 13, 2019
Sydney University (7th) v Gold Coast SUNS (6th)
Blacktown International Sportspark, 1pm
A spot in the top six is on the line when Sydney University takes on Gold Coast at Blacktown this weekend in a double header following the Grand Final rematch of Southport vs Sydney.
Sydney University continued to add to their spectacular rivalry with Canberra last week, registering the first draw of the 2019 season. It meant the SUNS, who beat Redland comfortably at Metricon Stadium last week, leapfrogged the Students in to sixth place.
This match is set up to be an absolute blockbuster in the pursuit of finals football as a win for the SUNS will open up a one and a half game advantage on Sydney University for that elusive sixth position on the ladder, making this match vital for the Students as they look to stay in the finals chase.
Round 12, 2018: Sydney University 11.15 (81) def. Gold Coast SUNS 10.15 (75) at Blacktown
Round 5, 2017: Sydney University 17.12 (114) def. Gold Coast SUNS 10.7 (67) at Blacktown
Elimination Final, 2016: Sydney University 19.15 (129) def. Gold Coast SUNS 7.10 (52) at Blacktown
1. The SUNS are playing some red-hot football currently winning their last three on the trot, whilst for the Students they have not tasted victory for a month which has seen them spiral out of the top six. However, Sydney University have been a bogey side for the SUNS in recent times with the Gold Coast outfit unable to beat Sydney University in their last five matchups, stretching all the way back to 2015.
2. It’s been a forgettable month for Sydney University witt big losses to Aspley and Brisbane followed by a heartbreaking loss against the GIANTS and the hysteria of last weekend’s draw, which also could have easily been a win. The Students have plateaued after what was a hot start to 2019 and will be looking to their senior players to set the tempo that saw them start the year so well.
3 The SUNS have conquered two of the most feared key forwards in the competition in Daniel Menzel and Matt Hammelmann, limiting the both to just the two goals in the past two weeks. This week they face the third leading goalkicker in the competition, Tristan Davies, and given their success the past fortnight this will surely be an interesting matchup to watch.
Mid-Season Rookie Selection Mitch Riordan was prolific for the SUNS on the weekend as he pushes for a senior debut. In the win over Redland, Riordan collected 26 disposals as well as five marks, five tackles and a goal to finish amongst their best players.
STATS THAT MATTER
For the SUNS the key lies in defence. A lot has been made about their defensive efforts of the past month, however a comparison to their start of the year where they lost four on the trot and their performances now show why the SUNS are playing their best football now. In losses this year the SUNS have conceded an average of 103 points a game. When the SUNS have won this year, this average nearly halves to only 59 points conceded in games. The SUNS currently run third last for goals scored in the competition however their wins have been built on a solid defence this year, and this blueprint looks like the way forward for the SUNS who are looking to push their current form into finals.
SUNS playing some good footy at the moment but this will be close. Gold Coast by 20.