IF LAKE Wendouree thought last week’s clash against Sunbury was important, it had better be ready for a double dosage against Darley.
Some might have been guilty of writing the Devils off after a less than desirable start to the season, but such a strong line-up was destined to eventually click.
And it seems the time is now.
Darley has won its last two games, registering more than 30 scoring shots in both matches in displays of outright attacking football.
The Devils will now have the Lakers in their sights, with the loser likely to fall out of the top six.
For Lake Wendouree, young gun Angus Kirby will be out of action for a month, as he heads overseas.
In what has been a breakout year for the young star, Kirby played with the Ballarat interleague squad and has been one of the Lakers’ best players throughout the year.
“He’s quick and very skilful. He’s been terrific all year,” Lakers coach Gavin Webb said.
“It will be a loss but it means other players have to step up now.”
In something of a saving grace for the Lakers, the month following Saturday’s match is somewhat easier than what they have faced in the past four weeks, with Melton, Bacchus Marsh and Sebastopol awaiting.
For now though, the attention is 100 per cent on Darley.
Brett Cook is out of the side after a nasty collarbone injury last week while coach Gavin Webb also pulled up sore, with Nick Aringo to come back in, while Dominic Sliwa makes his senior debut from the under-18.5s.
Andrew Pitson has also been named to make an early return from injury.
“Darley are pretty dangerous. Their best is very good if they get going,” Webb said.
“On paper, they are very strong, so we will have to be switched on.”
For the Devils, much of the emphasis will fall on Steve Kennedy, who has blitzed the field this year.
The gun midfielder has wreaked havoc in the midfield and if the Lakers are any chance, his influence must be quashed as much as possible.
PREDICTION: Darley to continue its resurgence in a tight one.