SENIOR coaches have declared Twin City and its striker Zac Walker as unbackable favourites for the league and golden boot.
But they differ on who might claim the coveted star player award.
Most believe Boomers’ form and the impact of Andrew Grove in key games should have the midfielder and coach among the contenders when the award is decided later this year.
The man himself is downplaying the idea.
“Unless there is an incredible run of injuries or something dramatic happens it’s Twin City’s to lose and Walker should win the golden boot,” Grove said.
“It really wouldn’t surprise me to see Walker win the star player as well in a similar vein to Dan Summers last year.”
Wangaratta’s Mario Anton-ello is a Grove fan.
“He turned on a 15-minute show against us and changed the game completely and from what people tell me it was a similar story in the win over Twin City,” Antonello said.
“He gets a lot of the ball, whether picking it up from defenders, or coming out of the midfield in attack.
“Without a doubt Twin City will win the league — every side has good players but they have more of them — the subs they bring on would start at most other clubs.”
Albury United’s Adam Carty said there was nothing not to like about Grove’s game.
But he’s tipping a previous winner to be high up in calculations.
“Diamonds Paul Brunec is another that will be racking up the points,” Carty said.
“They haven’t had the depth to spread the points around this year.
“He would have certainly got points against us at the weekend and from what I hear from others in most games he has played.
“Brunec (the 2003 winner) is obviously injury free and is possibly playing some of the best football of his career.
“We’ve had so many ins and outs that I don’t think any of our boys would have played enough games to be in the running.
“In terms of the league Twin City have only lost the one game in 11 weeks and even that wasn’t atrocious — it’s their’s to lose.”
Hotspurs mentor John Irvine believes Twin City might take the triple crown and he named English midfielder Matt Gray his pick for star player.
“They are clearly the team to beat,” he said.
“There is no issue with Zac Walker as golden boot and Gray has been outstanding all year and works at both ends.”
Last year’s league and cup winning coach Jimmy Bell is less certain about Wanderers’ grip on the title.
“They are three points in front and for me that means Twin City and Boomers are the favourites and I couldn’t think of a more deserving winner than Andrew Grove as star player,” he said.
Twin City coach David Afonso says his spread of talent will cost them the star player and he isn’t ready to claim the League title either.
“We lost to Boomers, while Diamonds appear to be coming good and have added Jedd Gvodenovic to their list,” he said.
“In terms of star player I think we have too many players who will steal points of each other.”
Melrose’s Josh Fluss says its Twin City and Walker but fancies one of his own for the star player.
“Pete Donaldson has been great for us all year — he will be our best chance,” he said.