THE Murray Bushrangers will be out to guarantee themselves a spot in the top four by defeating top side Dandenong Stingrays at Shepley Oval on Saturday.
With little separating the leading sides in the TAC Cup, coach Leon Higgins said it was crucial to finish as high as possible on the ladder.
“We really want top four,” Higgins said.
“Dandenong has been solid all year though and we only scraped home against them earlier in the year.
“They are a really good side.
“It’s pretty close at the top of the ladder this year so every game is important.”
The Bushrangers need to defeat Dandenong or eighth-placed Oakleigh in the two final rounds to secure the double chance.
In a huge plus, the Bushrangers will welcome back Charlie Spargo and Will Brodie from school commitments.
“Together with Jy Simpkin, both Will and Charlie are outstanding young men who continue to make a strong commitment to represent their local community within the TAC Cup,” Higgins said.
“They are both in good form, rested from a bye last weekend and looking forward to resuming in the TAC Cup.
“They will definitely provide a lift across the ground.”
Nathalia’s Nathan Oakes will make his debut after overcoming a broken jaw earlier in the season.
“Nathan has impressed the coaches with his work ethic and skill level at training,” he said.
“He’s a powerful footballer who uses the ball really well.
“He played in Nathalia’s 2015 senior premiership team and this weekend will give him a great insight into TAC Cup football.”
Wodonga’s Mason Marr returns to the side following a knee injury while North Albury’s Doulton Langlands is back following a stint with the GWS under-17 academy.
In a bid to have the best possible preparation for the match, the Bushrangers will travel to Dandenong on Friday night.
The match starts at 2pm.
In other vital clashes, Oakleigh take on Sandringham Dragons and Calder play Geelong Falcons.