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Round 12 action gets under way tonight with Under 9 and Under 14 footy at Le Page Park and Under 14 footy at Walter Galt Reserve!

With the remainder of the round continuing on Sunday, SMJFL contributor Owen Leonard casts his eye over the key matches for the round in this weeks Pepper Preview.


U/11 Mixed Purple- St Peters FC v Cheltenham JFC Black, Centenary Park- Oval 2, 9:55am

St Peters and Cheltenham will be kicking off the Sunday morning dew at Centenary Park in the important round 12 clash, as St Peters seek to cement their place inside the top four, while the fifth-placed ‘Chelt’ will be eyeing off a position in it. The form of Cheltenham appears promising heading into Sunday’s match, with a convincing 24-point triumph away from home against St Paul’s McKinnon last week, winning 5.7 (37) to 2.1 (13). Conversely, St Peters will be looking to bounce back after a disappointing 25-point loss at the hands of Hampton, which almost precisely mirrored Chelt’s performance, going down 2.0 (12) to 5.7 (37). With plenty on the line, this one should be followed closely.


U/12 Mixed Blue- East Brighton Vampires v St Bedes/Mentone Tigers, William St Reserve, 10:30am

It’s fourth against fifth, in what could potentially prove to be a mini elimination final. Currently, East Brighton hold fourth spot, with a positive 4-3 record. St Bedes/Mentone, despite having the same win/loss ratio, sit in fifth place, with a relatively low percentage of 94.02. It’s a figure the Tigers will need to raise, in an extraordinarily even competition, with Brighton Beach- who are sitting in second place- also on four wins and three losses, but boast a monumental percentage of 149.7. The Vampires will be looking wrestle back the bragging rights over St Bedes/Mentone, who ran out victors last time the rivals met back in round five. Expect a thrilling contest.


U/13 Mixed Div 1- Beaumaris v East Malvern, Donald McDonald Reserve, 1:10pm

One of the fieriest SMJFL rivalries in recent times, Beaumaris and East Malvern will renew hostilities in a blockbuster 1:10 meeting in Beaumaris on Sunday. The ladder-leading Beaumaris are presented the opportunity to create breathing space at the top of the table, while East Malvern can hunt down a top-two spot. The traditional powerhouse clubs have fought out a host of special battles in recent years, with the now Richmond young gun and cult hero, Jack Higgins, twice lifting East Malvern over the line against the Sharks in thrilling junior Grand Finals. The prodigious SMJFL rivalry seems set to continue with an exciting new chapter this Sunday.


U/14 Girls Div 2- Mordialloc Braeside v Prahran JFC, Gerry Green Reserve, 11:30am

There’s nothing that beats a top-of-the-table affair, and as the season enters its twilight, this 11:30am Sunday clash could be a Grand Final preview. The top-placed ‘Mordi-Brae’ host the second-placed Prahran, with both teams sitting on a 5-2 win-loss record. With Mordi coming off a comfortable 23-point win, Prahran will have to bounce back- strongly- after having their colours lowered by Beaumaris last week. In a game that could decide top spot, both teams will put it all on the line.


U/15 Boys Div 3- East Brighton Vampires v Murrumbeena, Hurlingham Park, Oval 1, 9:55am

Another top-end clash, with East Brighton looking to extend their break on the rest of the league against the second-placed Murrumbeena. Vampire Leo Carman has a comfortable lead on the league’s goal-kicking tally with 19, but Murrumbeena’s Thomas Schofield (15) and Mitchell Simmons (14) pose a perilous threat. The Vampires are coming off a 15-point loss, while on the other hand, Murrumbeena go into the intriguing clash with strong form after holding Port/South Melbourne to just three goals to win by 42 points. However, it should be considered that the week prior, East Brighton recorded a huge 143-point victory over the same Port/South Melbourne line-up. This could go either way.


U/16 Girls Div 2- Bentleigh JFC v St Kilda City JFC, Packer Park, 11am

The Bentleigh Demons host the tenacious St Kilda City in a 1v2 battle on Sunday morning. St Kilda City have been unrelenting so far in their 2018 campaign and are almost guaranteed a top-placed finish. But the Demons offer a strong challenge, having recorded a couple of big wins in the past month. In order to challenge St Kilda City, Bentleigh will need to negotiate a huge assignment in the form of Bree Whorlton, who has kicked 23 goals this season, the most of any player in the comp. Bentleigh will be eager to hand St Kilda City their second loss for the season, but that is, doubtless, a gargantuan task.


U/17 Boys Div 1- Highett/Cheltenham Black v AJAX Comets, Highett Reserve- Oval 1, 1:20pm

After losing to the Sharks in a 1v2 meeting last week, Highett/Cheltenham will be keen to find themselves back on the winner’s list and continue their premiership challenge. The third-placed AJAX will be looking to overtake Highett/Cheltenham and would do so with a win on Sunday. In order to achieve that, the Comets will need to counter the impact of Tyson Milne, who has performed well at under-19 level in the VAFA this season, as well as Jai Florent, the younger brother of Sydney Swans midfielder Ollie. With Highett/Cheltenham desperate to bounce back and AJAX after a top-two berth, this is a match not to be missed.


U/18 Girls Div 1- Beaumaris v St Peters, Banksia Reserve, 12:30pm

It’s 4v3 at Shark Park on Sunday, with the currently 5-5 Beaumaris looking to gain a positive win-loss record and subsequently solidify their place in the top four, and St Peters pushing for a top two spot, which if held onto, would mean a home final. Shark Zoe Titmus has booted 14 goals so far this season, just one goal behind leader Bridget Graffeo, and is pivotal to Beaumaris’ chances. This game is a true flip-of-the-coin and a must-win for both teams.