Wanderers coach relying on young guns to fire in semi
HOCKEY: Wanderers player-coach Aaron Harmsworth is looking to his talented under-18 quartet to take the lead in this weekend's CQ League semi-final.
The Wanderers, who are gunning for a 14th straight title, will take on Frenchville Rovers tomorrow at Gladstone's Rigby Park.
Meteors and Southern Suburbs meet in the other men's semi, with the winners of the two games advancing to the grand final next weekend in Rockhampton.
The Wanderers play Meteors, and Southern Suburbs tackle Frenchville Rovers in the women's semis.
Harmsworth will not play this weekend as he is away on Queensland coaching duties.
The Wanderers will also be without Clinton McKay and Jarrod Deeth, with several other players under injury clouds.
Harmsworth said young guns Regan Weatherhead, Cooper Johnson, Clayton Evans and Callum White would need to step up and play key roles tomorrow.
"We're in a bit of unfamiliar territory after coming off a loss last week and a draw the week before,” he said.
"We're probably not playing our best hockey at the moment and a lot of it has got to do with consistency.
"We've struggled to get the same people on the park all season.
"It will be the same again this weekend. It's just a jigsaw puzzle we're constantly trying to move around.”
Harmsworth said this season had been one of the closest yet and any one of the semi-finalists could take the title.
"We've got Frenchville this week and they've been playing some good hockey,” he said.
"They're certainly capable of beating any team in the top four so we're pretty wary of them.
"We've beaten them in most games this year, but they certainly haven't been one-sided affairs.”
Harmsworth said the Wanderers would have to up their intensity level and nullify the impact of Frenchville's Jarrod Bass and Adam Bunn.
"Intensity is what we've been working on, the quality of ball speed and the speed in which we get in position and set up,” he said.
"I'm hoping they pick up where we left off at training this week and can do a job.”
CQ LEAGUE SEMI-FINALS
Games to be played at Rigby Park, Gladstone
- 1.40pm: A1 women, Wanderers v Meteors
- 3.05pm: A1 men, Meteors v Southern Suburbs
- 4.35pm: A1 women, Southern Suburbs v Frenchville Rovers
- 6.10pm: A1 men, Wanderers v Frenchville Rovers