Crows AFLW coach rates finals clash with Kangaroos a toss-up
Adelaide's women are brimming with confidence after giving Sydney a mighty shellacking. Photo: AAP
Adelaide coach Matthew Clarke reckons his AFLW club’s preliminary final against North Melbourne is an even-money bet.
Clarke’s Crows travel to meet the Kangaroos at Melbourne’s Ikon Park on Sunday in a duel between the losing prelim finalists of last season.
Clarke is wary of the Roos, who earnt hosting rights by dismantling reigning premiers Melbourne by 41 points in a qualifying final a fortnight ago.
“North Melbourne’s last game was outstanding, it was probably the performance of the season,” Clarke told reporters at Adelaide Airport on Saturday.
“But I don’t think there is a favourite going in. I think it’s an even-money bet – not that I gamble.”
Adelaide lost their qualifying final against the Brisbane Lions by two points before rebounding with a 67-point drubbing of Sydney in last Saturday night’s semi-final.
The triple-premiership winning Crows boast numerous players with flag experience while the Kangaroos are yet to reach a grand final.
“It’s nice to have some players who have been in these games before,” Clarke said.
‘Pretty well balanced’
“But we have also got some younger players who haven’t had that same experience so that is probably a good blend … we are pretty well balanced.”
Both sides boast immense star power, headed by North’s prime mover Jasmine Garner – a five-time All Australian and three-time club champion.
“We spoke last week about (Sydney’s) Chloe Molloy who is one of the standout players of the competition,” Clarke said.
“Jas is probably a bigger standout player of the competition, it has been remarkable, her consistency over the season.
“So obviously she’s a massive threat.
“But in the end, individual players will have influence but I think it will be collective balance of both midfield groups, both forwards and backlines at the end of the day, so we will see how it plays out.”
North named an unchanged side while the Crows have recalled Najwa Allen at the expense of Hannah Munyard.