SOME of the Ovens and Murray’s biggest names have labelled the competition lopsided, predictable and dictated by money.
Speaking at yesterday’s annual Hall of Fame launch, league greats John Clancy and Brian Gilcrist expressed a range of their concerns with the state of the league.
Albury and Yarrawonga have met in the past five grand finals and along with Lavington look certain to claim the top three spots on the ladder once again.
Dual Morris medallist Clancy, a legend at Corowa and Albury, said it wasn’t healthy.
“I think Albury and Yarra, Lavington as well, stand well above the rest of the competition, unfortunately,” Clancy said.
Gilcrist, a five-time best and fairest winner at Wodonga, went a step further.
“Albury is the best side I have seen in the Ovens and Murray,” he said.
“If they don’t get any injuries, they’ll win it by a fair bit.”
However, Yarrawonga champion Ken “Pascoe” Ellis said anyone was beatable and pointed at Corowa-Rutherglen’s resurgence under new coach Bryce Campbell as proof things could change.
“What Corowa has done, retaining their senior players in the seconds to look after them and get them up the ladder, has re-invigorated that club,” he said.
“A lot of others could follow that example.”
Gilcrist wasn’t so sure.
His club is on the hunt for a new coach after Ben Hollands announced he would stand down at the end of the season.
“We (Wodonga) will never be competitive with those top teams unless we get money from somewhere,” Gilcrist said.
“The start of last year, after three rounds, we knew who was going to finish first, second and third, and we knew it again this year.”
Albury has won its past four games by 192, 140, 156 and 122 points, leading many to declare the premiership race over.
The Tigers travel to Yarrawonga on Saturday to meet the Pigeons and will go in as white-hot favourites.