CKS Swifts lose arm wrestle

CKS Swifts co-coach, Ben Martin.

CKS Swifts co-coach, Ben Martin.

CKS Swifts have lost their second game for the season to Kalkee after an arm wrestling round thirteen of Horsham District Football League.

It was always going to be a difficult task for the in form Swifts, taking on Kalkee on their home turf. The Kalkee oval is quite long and narrow and to play good football there without practice is a tough ask.

"They play their home ground really well and so they should," coach Ben Martin said.

"In the end though we fell down across so many areas and were out played."

In the opening term the Baggies were kicking into a strong breeze which made scoring hard, even when they had most of the play.

Kalkee took advantage of the conditions and capitalised on their opportunities to be eight points in front at the first break.

"We were reasonably happy with our effort in the first quarter," Martin said.

With the strong breeze in their favour in the second term it was Swifts turn to make inroads on the scoreboard.

After a slow start to the term it only got worse, as Kalkee were able to increase their lead, despite battling against the wind.

"We needed to use the wind to our advantage and instead we played some ordinary football," Martin said.

Kalkee went into the main break with a 13 point lead.

After the break Swifts showed little resistance and they continued to miss targets and make mistakes under perceived pressure.

"We had guys leading to the ball and we would put it over his head and onto the chest of his defender," Martin said.

"You just can't afford to do that."

Making the game that much harder for the Baggies was their lack of rotation.

Both Owen Phillips and Jake Goodes suffered injuries in the first half and took no further part in the game.

Phillips was on the wrong end of head high contact and was left with a fractured nose, while Goodes hurt his knee.

Both Phillips and Goodes provide good run out of the Swifts backline and were missed in the second half.

With the loss of those two as well as Luke Mitchell, Damien McDonald and Josh Molan all missing, Swifts looked young and inexperienced.

Swifts were able to match the physicality of Kalkee's top end players such as Steve Schultz, Tim Wade and Josh Mibus for the first quarter, but with a bit of momentum they took control.

Kalkee were comfortable winners in the finish, defeating Swifts 8.16.66 to 5.7.37.

“We were beaten in so many areas,” Martin said.

“Both physically and mentally we weren’t where we needed to be.”

While the backline was under immense pressure they were the better players on the ground for Swifts.

Justin Thomas did his best to nullify the scoring of Kalkee, taking several intercepting marks, while Ricky Whitehead and Nick Pickering were also praised for their effort.

“There were a couple of standouts who could hold their heads high,” Martin said.

Martin believes they were defeated in the middle of the ground which for him was disappointing.

“To be beaten in clearances when your ruckman is winning most of the taps is disappointing.

“I’m not sure if that’s a communication thing, but we will need to work on it.”

While not happy to lose, Swifts will take positives out of the loss and with any luck bounce back this weekend when they take on Edenhope-Apsley.

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