BY DYLAN BOLCH & MAE JAMES
Round 3 is set to be an action-packed day on Sunday 2 May for the South Metro Junior Football League (SMJFL) with the Monarch Community Umpire Round taking place across clubland.
Across the country, leagues and their clubs will celebrate their local umpires with various initiatives run by the clubs.
The SMJFL would like to thank SMJFL Umpire Academy Major Partner Monarch Painting for their continued support and involvement with the league.
Here is the Round 3 SMJFL Preview.
Under 18 Girls Aqua – East Brighton Vampires JFC Low vs U18 SPMJFC / EMJFC Youth Girls
Sunday, 11:30am, Hurlingham Park Oval 1
With both teams experiencing losses in Round 2, both the Vampires and SPMJFC / EMJFC girls will be keen for a comeback in Round 3.
The Vampires, who are in 7th place on the U18 Girls ladder, have the advantage of their home ground this week while the SPMJFC / EMJFC girls, who are in 5th place, will be looking to maintain their position with their sights set on moving up.
Both sides have multiple star players, including Rosie Finster from SPMJFC / EMJFC who slotted three goals in Round 2 to take her seasonal tally to four goals.
It will be a big morning at Hurlingham Park with Monarch SMJFL Umpires scheduled to make an appearance.
Under 10 Mixed Fire – East Malvern JFC (Smith) vs Brighton Beach U10 Buckingham
Sunday, 9:00am, Basil Reserve
The youngest age group featuring in our preview this week are the U10s. In Round 2, East Malvern JFC took on Beaumaris FC U10 Mixed Great Whites, while Brighton Beach battled it out with Prahran JFC U10 Ashton. The Knights and Roos will go head-to-head for the first time on East Malvern’s home ground at Basil Reserve. Both teams have shown great sportsmanship and a desire to improve their skills and have fun in the early rounds of the season.
Under 11 Mixed Amber – DJFC Under 11 – Moran vs Prahran JFC U11 Nuttal
Sunday, 9:00am, Chadwick Oval
The first and third place Under 11 Mixed Amber ladder holders have been cruising through the SMJFL season so far, both undefeated. Hence, this matchup is sure to be one to watch. Beau Marasco has been a key goal scorer for the Dingoes, kicking one each game so far. On the opposition, Prahran has Edward Cacopardo, who kicked three last round, and Luca Sigroi, who kicked two goals in Round 2 and three goals in Round 1. It will be interesting to see who else is going to add to the tally this week. It could be anyone with some of the performances seen so far.
Under 12 Mixed Maroon – Ashwood Junior Football Club vs SMD Under 12 Mixed White
Sunday, 9:00am, Essex Heights Reserve
The South Melbourne Districts Under 12s travel to Essex Heights Reserve this Sunday to take on Ashwood JFC. Both teams have a 1-1 record so far this season and will be looking to add another win this weekend.
Fresh off their 50-game milestones, Ashwood pair Lachlan Wu and Sam Hadzic caught up with SMJFL Media in Round 2.
Both dedicated clubmen, Lachlan was relishing the opportunity to lace up the boots again.
“It’s always good when you wake up in the morning on gameday,” Lachlan said.
Sam said he loved the fact he could play alongside some of his best friends.
“I love hanging out with [my] mates every Sunday and having a kick,” Sam said.
The South Melbourne Districts will be looking to return to their Round 1 form, which saw them defeat the Hampton Rovers by 34 points. Jack Muir kicked two goals that day. This is sure to be a close contest and it looks as though the game will set against perfect footy weather, with the forecast predicting a sunny morning.
Under 13 Mixed Div 2 – St Bedes / Mentone Tigers U13 Div 4 vs East Malvern JFC (White)
Sunday, 9:00am, Mentone Reserve
Both these sides will make their Division 2 debuts this week, having been promoted from lower divisions. St Bedes / Mentone Tigers have come all the way up from Division 4 after scintillating performances across the first two rounds. Joshua Scanlan kicked seven goals across the first fortnight, including a haul of six goals in Round 1. Four of his teammates have three or more goals to their names as well.
East Malvern JFC have been promoted from Division 3, after two impressive performances over the first two rounds. In Round 2, Will Sutherland kicked three goals and Harry Hemmings kicked two goals in their victory over the Waverley Park Hawks. In Round 1, the side had 18 individual goal kickers, showing their ability to work together as a team.
Both strong sides, it will be fascinating to see which team will take the win come Sunday.
Under 15 Boys Div 3 – Highett U15 vs Murrumbeena JFC
Sunday, 1:00pm, Highett Reserve – Oval 1
Highett and Murrumbeena will clash this Sunday at 1:00pm at Highett Reserve in what promises to be a terrific encounter. Highett went down to Dingley by 47 points in Round 2 but showed positive signs in their Round 1 matchup against Beaumaris, winning by three goals.
Murrumbeena is well-rested after their bye in Round 2 so will no doubt be refreshed and ready for the contest. In Round 1, superstar Zak Blacker booted a bag of seven goals in a resounding 39-point victory over PMSMD. It is set to be a tough contest with Murrumbeena and Highett looking to reaffirm their spots on the ladder.
Hear from SMJFL Umpire Academy & Operations Manager Cam Watts ahead of the Monarch Community Umpire Round: