Bulls back-up players get job done to keep finals' bid alive
FOOTBALL: Even with a likely club record 17 players unavailable, the Ipswich City Bulls still manufactured a win to keep their finals' hopes alive.
Before City's top side battled to secure an important 2-1 victory over Pine Hills, the Bulls Reserves ground out a 3-3 draw despite being severely stretched.
Such is the club's depth in this year's Capital League 1 competition.
However, Bulls assistant coach Chris Greaves was realistic about their latest first team result at Sutton Park.
With cellar-dwellars Pine Hills struggling this season, Greaves said the Bulls' player drain made it a more competitive contest.
"We've got pretty good depth,'' he said.
"We're quite fortunate that we do have a number of the (Reserve Grade) boys that can step up, which makes it easier when you do have a tough weekend.''
That was highlighted by Nick Carson scoring City's first goal before substitute Chris Randall seized on his first top grade opportunity to seal the victory.
The large number of regular players missing were due to injury, a New Zealand trip and goalkeeper Zayne Freiberg's wedding.
Regulars like captain Joel Munn, Zygan Condie, Jay Kitching and Brent Witney provided the backbone of the Saturday night's first team.
With four CL1 matches left, the Bulls are just outside the top four, needing to string a series of wins together to ensure they make the playoffs. But with a lot of club progress being made, Greaves said finals' football was still on the agenda.
"All the teams in the top four are dropping points,'' Greaves said, noting how tight this year's competition has been.
"If we drew last night or lost the game, I would probably say top four would be near impossible.
"But win next week (against North Star) and we're still in with a good show.''
Western Spirit's final hopes are all but gone after losing 6-0 to Carina on Friday night.
The Ipswich City Bulls women lost 3-2 to Coomera in their Saturday afternoon Premier League match at Viney Park.