In what is the last instalment for this year’s Pepper Money Preview, we have taken a look at the best Grand Final’s on display this Sunday across the SMJFL. The second week of September will live long in the hearts and minds over those playing. Pepper Money would like to wish all SMJFL players the very best of luck across the weekend. Without further ado, here are the most eye-catching fixtures in the third and final week of SMJFL finals.
Under 14 Girls Division 2 – Port Melbourne v Beaumaris
Sunday 12:30pm, Le Page Park – Oval 2
Beaumaris get their shot at redemption on the biggest stage possible at Koornang Park. Just two weeks ago they were defeated by Port Melbourne – the team standing in their way of a Premiership. Port Melbourne have gone through the season largely untroubled, losing just the one game – ironically to Beaumaris. The game is set up to go down to the absolute wire. Make no mistake, this will be nothing short of a classic, with the two previous matches decided by a collective 10 points.
Under 14 Mixed Division 3 – Brighton Beach v Prahran
Sunday 12:15pm, Le Page Park – Oval 1
The Kangaroos’ dominance has continued into the finals series and they need just one more victory to cap off a dominant season. The division’s leading scorers were wasteful against their now-Grand Final opponents, but still managed to win by 10 points. Prahran will have taken heart from their performance as they showcased an ability to hang in when behind on the scoreboard. Their progression to the Grand Final included a gritty win over 3-point win over Beaumaris. If they can improve their accuracy Prahran are every chance of claiming a scalp.
Under 15 Boys Division 4 – Ajax Comets v Beaumaris
Sunday 8.45am, Hurlingham Park – Oval 1
The Ajax Jets have flown high all season and continue to soar until the very last game of the season. Beaumaris remain the only side with a chance to bring them down to earth. There is no doubt the Beauy boys are capable. Their free-scoring form over the last few weeks ensures they are within a shout of Premiership glory. Despite finishing third on the ladder, the Sharks made light work of the second-placed Dragons, strolling home in an 80-point cakewalk. Ajax will be harder to break down there is no doubt, but the Sharks can certainly wound their more-fancied opponents.
Under 16 Boys Division 3 – Cheltenham v St Paul’s
Sunday 10.50am, Darling Park – Basil Reserve
Lovers of a spectacle will be thrilled to see Cheltenham and St Paul’s square off again after their pulsating encounter two weeks ago. After trailing by 13 at the final change, Cheltenham staged an incredible fightback, kicking 4.5 in the last term to scrape over the line. St Paul’s would still be hurting, but they know their best is enough to claim Premiership glory. Spookily the Doggies have finished with the identical score two weeks in a row, but with Cheltenham averaging 75 points a game they may need an even bigger lift.
Under 16 Girls Division 1 – East Sandringham v Port Melbourne
Sunday 1.45pm, Koornang Park
Scoring is the name of the game in every form of football and with East Sandringham’s potent arsenal in tow, they deserve to be favourites here. Incredibly, both teams dispatched minor premiers Oakleigh in successive weeks. Port Melbourne’s accuracy and grit was evident to all at Columbia Park; however they will need far more to deny the swashbuckling Zebras. Their fluid ball-movement has caused problems all year and their ability to hit the scoreboard in haste should worry Port. Their best hope is to make this a dour, physical battle akin to their triumph over Oakleigh.
Under 17 Boys Division 1 – Mordialloc Braeside v St Bedes/Mentone
Sunday 3.40pm, Boss James Reserve
Mordialloc Braeside have held their nerve all year and will be confident they can do so here against St Bedes/Mentone. The Tigers have fought hard coming from fourth place to earn their spot in the grand final. They took on St Peters in the first week of the finals and then fought tooth and nail last week to beat Bentleigh by just 3 points to secure their place in the Grand Final. Last time these two teams met was in round 11 and Mordi-Brae were victors by 5 points. Will they be able to hold off a never say die Tigers side to take out the premiership?
Under 17 Boys Division 2 – Caulfield v St Kilda City
Sunday 3.00pm, Darling Park – Basil Reserve
Caulfield and St Kilda renew acquaintances at Basil Reserve in what is sure to be a terrific contest. The Bears and Saints have fought it out for superiority all season long and now only four quarters separates one from euphoria and the other from misery. In their most recent encounter Caulfield pulled away in the last quarter to triumph by 23 points. In the end the score line reflected Caulfield’s dominance but if St Kilda City can force the Bears into rushed decisions, they can certainly leave as Premiers.
Under 18 Girls Division 1 – East Malvern v St Peters
Sunday 1.50pm, Boss James Reserve
East Malvern remain the prohibitive favourites to claim the Division 1 crown after a barnstorming season. The Knights have played with dare throughout 2019 and have been handsomely rewarded as the division’s best attack and backline. They will prove incredibly difficult to stop but St Peters will carry a threat, particularly in thanks to their hard-nosed defence. The red and green machine are 0-3 against the Knights this season, but they couldn’t have a better chance of changing it than right now.
Under 18 Girls Division 2 – Beaumaris v Mordialloc Braeside
Sunday 3:30pm, Koornang Park
Beaumaris breezed through their Semi Final against Mordialloc to claim the first spot in the Division 2 Grand Final. The Sharks are the most in-form team right now and look primed to claim silverware. The Sharks have won their last six games and have looked incredibly potent, culminating in 27 scoring shots against the minor premiers a fortnight ago. Mordialloc will have their chance for revenge after breezing past Prahran in wet conditions this Wednesday night. Prahran never stood a chance with the Mustangs dominating from minute one. The doubt is whether Mordialloc can produce a four-quarter effort with just three days recovery.