BY NATHAN DOLE
A PREMIERSHIP winner and one of the Sydney Swans greatest on-ballers, Josh Kennedy will play for Murrabit in the Golden Rivers footy action this Saturday.
Kennedy was taken by Murrabit at pick four in this year’s Carlton Draft.
A Hawk who became a Swan, Kennedy will be a Blue for a day as Murrabit hosts Wandella in the GRFNL’s eighth round.
Kennedy not only adds 290 games of AFL experience – 13 with Hawthorn, and 277 for Sydney – but also invaluable leadership from his stint as Swans captain.
A three-time All-Australian, Kennedy also earned the Bob Skilton Medal on three occasions as Sydney’s club champion.
Murrabit’s on-ball division to tackle Wandella will be co-captain Ben Gillingham in the ruck, Josh Kennedy as ruck-rover, and Blake Watts as rover.
In terms of premiership wins, the Kennedy clan has achieved many.
Josh’s father, John Kennedy Jnr was a four-time premiership player with Hawthorn in the club’s golden era of the 1980s.
Kennedy Jnr played 241 matches for the Hawks, with the highs being the grand final wins of ’83, ’86, ’88 and ’89.
Josh’s grandfather is the legendary John Kennedy Snr who played 164 matches for Hawthorn and was the club’s first premiership coach in 1961.
The Kennedy-coached Hawks also won the grand finals in ’71 and ’96.
John Kennedy was elevated to Legend status in the AFL Hall of Fame.
On Saturday it will be Josh Kennedy doing what he can to help Murrabit end its winless run.
The Blues’ attack is led by former Brisbane Lions and Essendon forward Damian Cupido who despite limited chances has kicked 24 goals this season.
Last Saturday was clearly Murrabit’s best performance of the season as it finished within seven points of the second-placed Moulamein.
Best for the Blues in that contest at home included Tobie Cameron, Dustin Blake and James Russo.
The Wandella Bombers will be aiming for their second win of the season.
Last round, Wandella was beaten by 81 points in the clash with the Tigers at Macorna.
Best for the Bombers were Adam Ward, Jonty Taylor, Archer Lancaster, and Tim Robinson.
Other players to watch for Wandella include ruckman Jarred Schiltz, Russell Rich, and Ryan Lancaster who was named at full-back against Cupido.
It’s third against first on Saturday as Hay hosts Moulamein.
The Hay Lions are on the rebound from an 86-52 loss on Ultima’s ground.
Hay’s best against the Kangaroos included Fergus Cattanach, Hugh Crighton, Daniel Stewart, and James Eddy.
The Lions also have Dean Aylett in the centre, co-captains Kenneth Jubb and Brad Pocock, and Daniel Zambon in attack.
Moulamein won a hard-fought clash at Murrabit.
Players to watch for the Swans include Daniel Aarsman at half-forward, Amos Farrell in the centre, Rodney Reeves and Cody Storm.
Moulamein also has Nathan Buckley, Anthony Daw, captain Heath Moloney, and Andy Silva.
Another big game will be at Macorna where the Tigers take on the unbeaten Ultima.
The Tigers roared to an 81-point win at home against Wandella last round as Lachlan Ritchie, Nick Ingleton, Shaun Haffenden and Harley Somerville led the way.
Macorna’s line-up includes Wayne Mitrovic, Michael Roberts, Malcolm Neiwand and Xavier Wishart.
It’s been an incredible rise by Ultima which was last in ’22 on a 2-14 record to now be 7-0 and leading the ladder.
Ultima won its latest hit-out at home against Hay by 34 points as Thomas Bull, Bailey Codling, Caillum Brady and Kyle Symons were best for the Kangaroos.
The form of Mitch and Tyler Makepeace, and Jayden Kiel is another key factor in Ultima’s run.
Golden Rivers FNL senior footy ladder:
Ultima 190 per cent, 28 points; Moulamein 129, 24; Hay 109, 16; Macorna 104, 12; Wandella 68, 4; Murrabit 49, 0.
24 Damian Cupido, Murrabit.
22 Andy Silva, Moulamein.
21 Lachlan Ritchie, Macorna.
18 Daniel Aarsman, Moulamein.
17 Simon Bunyan, Hay.
14 Ryan Devereux, Ultima.
14 Troy Parker, Macorna.
13 Amos Farrell, Moulamein.
12 Khy Stovell, Moulamein.
11 Fergus Cattanach, Hay.
10 Jack Delmenico, Ultima.
10 Josh Walters, Macorna.
9 Blake Azzopardi, Moulamein.
9 Liam Whitbourne, Hay.
8 Sean O’Reilly, Ultima.