Saturday saw the North London Lions play host to the much anticipated 2015 AFL London Grand Final rematch, at Bounds Green. The Lions and the Wildcats were both coming into Round Four with two wins a piece, both only being beaten by the Wandsworth Demons.
The Wildcats weren’t mucking around. Kicking on the slight uphill that Bounds Green presents, Risol, Horan and Williams all made their mark early on, kicking four goals to the Lions’ single point despite the disadvantage.
West London were in form. Even with loosing a couple of key players in the offseason, it seemed that the Lions had a higher player turnover and was lacking some of the depth that was present in 2015.
A couple of detrimental mistakes by the Lions had Wildcat Andy Challis carving up the midfield, showing up at every contest and presenting nothing but effective disposals. Whilst the defensive structure seemed impenetrable, the likes of strong defender Max Renfrey swept off the backline superbly and the extra man in defense gave the Lions little to no chance to score.
Challis and Risol both showed dominance around the pack and kicked an impressive nine goals between them. Whilst goals seemed to keep flowing, coming directly from centre clearances Todd Pfieffer also put his name on the board.
By the third quarter the Lions were down by eight goals, despite a lot of hard work in the midfield from Bryce James. Ben ‘The Difference’ Quick took matters into his own hands as he came off the back line, intercepting the Wildcats advance and ran towards the forward forty. Emulating that of Buddy Franklin’s long bomb from the Swans vs Hawks match the day before, Quick casually slotted a major from 50 odd meters out with what looked like little effort, making it the Lions’ third for the game and quarter.
Unfortunately, the flash of brilliance from Captain Quick and the four goal premiership quarter from the Lions couldn’t stem the flow from the Wildcats. The ‘Cats piled on another six goals in the fourth, well and truly putting the game to rest.
Not stopping at an 87 Premiership point win, the Wildcats also came away with their first boat race win in two years, making it clean sweep across the board in all divisions.
NORTH LONDON LIONS: 0.1 0.1 4.3 4.3 (27)
WEST LONDON WILDCATS: 4.5 8.7 10.8 16.18 (114)
WEST LONDON WILDCATS: Risol 5, Challis 4, Pfeiffer 2, Abraham, Hendrie, Horan, Stevenson, Williams
NORTH LONDON LIONS: Fitzgerald, Hammond, Marr, Quick
FULL AFL LONDON RESULTS
NORTH LONDON LIONS 4.3 (27) def by WEST LONDON WILDCATS 16.18 (114)
WANDSWORTH DEMONS 21.13(139) def PUTNEY MAGPIES 2.5(17)
WIMBLEDON HAWKS 4.13(37) draw LONDON SWANS 4.13(37)
SOUTH EAST LONDON GIANTS 4.0(24) def by WANDSWORTH DEMONS 5.6(36)
SOUTH EAST LONDON GIANTS 9.12(66) def CLAPHAM DEMONS 10.4(64)
REGENTS PARK LIONS 1.3(9) def by SHEPHERDS BUSH RAIDERS 18.13(121)
SOUTH EAST LONDON GIANTS 0.1(1) def by SOUTH LONDON DEMONS 21.13(139)
BOUNDS GREEN LIONS 4.5(29) def by EALING EMUS 11.9(75)
READING KANGAROOS 0.5(5) def PUTNEY MAGPIES 0.0(0)