YARRAWONGA is resigned to the fact Brad Ottens won’t be available for Saturday’s blockbuster against Albury.
As many expected, Geelong has pulled rank with Ottens and, while he’s yet to be officially ruled out, he looks at long odds to play this weekend.
Yarrawonga will leave the door ajar but has almost conceded the premiership ruckman will not take his place at Albury Sportsground.
To add to its woes, Ottens might not be the only former AFL player unavailable for Yarrawonga on Saturday.
Morris medal contender Kayne Pettifer is no certainty to play.
Pettifer has been in a moon boot and must pass a fitness test tomorrow night.
He remains confident of doing so.
Pettifer sat out the second half of Yarrawonga’s thumping of Wangaratta Rovers a fortnight ago after an opponent landed on his badly bruised foot.
He has been cleared of bone damage but sat out Saturday’s win over Wodonga.
The Tigers, in contrast, will almost certainly be at full-strength for the top-of-the-table clash.
Six-time premiership forward Matt Fowler (shoulder) is the only senior player under an injury cloud but is no certainty to come straight back into the seniors.
Josh Maher has played two games in the reserves while Matt Shir also had to prove his fitness before earning a senior call-up recently.
Maher, an All-Australian last year, is all but certain to be recalled this week.
Andy Carey and Josh Dicketts are also set to be available for selection.
Saturday’s victor will finish the season on top of the ladder and earn the first week off in finals.
History says that’s a huge advantage, with the minor premier claiming the past seven Ovens and Murray premierships.