SPOTS will be up for grabs as Wodonga uses its last pre-season hit-out as a selection tool for next week’s clash against Corowa-Rutherglen.
With just seven days before the round 1 match against the Roos at John Foord Oval, Dogs coach Ben Hollands plans to rotate up to 25 players for the practice match against Knox at John Flower Oval today.
Among those to suit up will be two of Wodonga’s latest recruits, ruckman Matt Seiter and utility Neil Reeve, although they are likely to be heavily rotated.
Both players have clearances pending.
“We’ll manage how much game time they’ll play,” Hollands said yesterday.
“We’ll probably play 24 or 25 guys.
“I think we are only missing two or three so we’ll have a pretty serious final tune-up before next week.
“We haven’t had a lot of competitive stuff besides last week’s game.
“We want to try and get a bit of game time before next week.”
Hollands said Dogs’ fans should be patient with former player Seiter, who had returned from overseas.
“He’s in reasonable touch but still getting match fit,” he said.
“He’s been terrific since he got here at Christmas time and he’ll get better as the season goes on.”
Knox will be a stern test for Wodonga after finishing eighth of 12 teams in the strong Eastern Football League last season.
Wodonga is just one of three Ovens and Murray clubs to have games this week, with Myrtleford hosting East Geelong today, while Lavington played away to Benalla last night.
Myrtleford has included Kristan Height, Josh Chapman, Grant Harris and Hayden Murray, but will be without Nick Howell after he dislocated his “good” shoulder in last week’s home win against Blackburn.
Myrtleford co-coach Leigh Corcoran said Howell was likely to escape surgery but could be sidelined for more than two months.
“It’s a long-term injury,” Corcoran said.
“I haven’t heard a figure of weeks but it could be 10.
“It’s very unfortunate.
“He’s as fit as he’s ever been and committed to training.
“He’s got character to bounce back from it.”