Lovell set to roar again

The Kingborough Tigers have made one of the plays of the off-season, securing the services of former Hawthorn midfielder Kieran Lovell.

The Tigers’ midfield brigade will be bolstered in 2019 with the addition of the 21-year-old ball magnet, who joins his junior club after three seasons within the AFL system.

As part of a strong Hawthorn squad Lovell broke through to play two senior games during his time in the brown and gold, while also playing an instrumental role in VFL affiliate Box Hill’s 2018 flag triumph.

Delisted in October after the 2018 season, Lovell is now back in the state and firmly focused on passing on his experience to a young Tigers squad.

“It is very exciting to be back. It was a bit of a tough decision – I had to work through a few things with myself and my manager but came to the decision to come back home.

“There were offers all around the country, other state leagues, but I had to do a lot of weighing up and I think I’ve made the right choice. If I was going to move back home, it was always going to be the Tigers I’d choose to play with.”

IC: AFL Photos

The lure of playing in the yellow and black once again became even stronger for Lovell after spending time around the club in recent weeks.

“It was probably the pull of wanting to be home and to be around my close family.

“I had spent a couple of weeks here training in the pre-season and really liked the vibe of the place and believe we are heading in a really great direction and I want to be a part of that.

Lovell, taken by the Hawks with pick 22 at the 2015 national draft, impressed as a junior at the Tigers, going on to win Tasmania’s MVP at the under-18 national championships in 2015, as well as All Australian selection.

Lovell will join Ryan Matthews, Lachie Clifford and Blake Grant in a strong midfield contingent, with the addition of Lovell set to ease the burden of covering for midfield general Will Campbell, who will miss the start of the 2019 campaign after suffering a knee injury.

Renowned as a prolific ball winner Lovell is the latest signing in a strong off-season for the Tigers, following the likes of Huonville forward Michael Paul, Cygnet forward Elijah Reardon and the experienced Jarryd Drew, with Drew – a Burnie NWFL premiership player – joining the club as a playing assistant coach with playing experience in the VFL, NEAFL and TAC Cup.

Although excited by these recruits Baumeler is remaining cool about how his side will fare in 2019.

“The only expectation is that we want to improve.

“To be brutally honest we won three games last year, so we are coming from a low base. Our improvement will come from within and this December-January period as we mould everything in and get everyone together.”

Lovell is adamant that he is yet to give up on his dream of cracking it as an AFL player in future, but his immediate focus is clearly on what he can bring to the Twin Ovals.

“I definitely haven’t given up, but I have taken a step back from football being the be-all and end-all in my life, so I’ve got to work out a few other things and try and have a well-balanced, rounded life.

“You see blokes getting picked up at 25, 26, 27 these days so it is definitely something I will strive towards in the future but right now I’m focussed on playing some good footy here.

Hungry Tigers Determined To Shake Royal Tag

Kings of the honourable loss no more. 

That is the message from and hope of Tigers coach Trent Baumeler after Saturday’s stirring win over the heavily fancied Blues.

The Tigers had been competitive for much of the season, but hadn’t broken through for a win since a round one defeat of the Demons at North Hobart Oval.

Starved of that winning feeling, the Tigers entered Saturday’s clash with the Blues with plenty of vigour and hunger, out hunting the opposition to set up one of the club’s most famous wins.

Baumeler concedes that the win was a significant breakthrough for his young side, particularly when you consider that Marcus Davies (suspension), Ryan Matthews (injury) and Hugh Johnston (studies) were all missing from action.

“(The feeling is) definitely relief. But this was reward for our last month of football and the way we have gone about it.

“We have been getting close but we didn’t want to be the ‘kings of the honorable loss’ anymore by just getting to within three or four goals of teams.

“It was great to see the boys have that smile on their face and be able to go in and sing the song, learn how to win and get addicted to that feeling,” he said.

IC: Solstice Digital

Although the win surprised many in the football world, Baumeler was quick to remark that nothing had significantly changed internally in the lead up.

“We go in with a plan to win every game. We want to win. We have shown that we can get close to good teams but we have finally broken through for that win now.

“We are a tough team to play against and we are aiming every week to set up our next year and set up those winning habits and winning culture.”

Midfield bull Will Campbell was integral to the victory, controlling the midfield in the absence of star teammate Ryan Matthews.

Campbell’s midfield grunt has been a feature of his game in recent seasons, but he appeared to take it to even another level on Saturday.

“Having to replace Ryan Matthews is hard, he is one of the best inside midfielders in the competition and has been in the NEAFL as well. He is a high level footballer and our whole midfield group, including Will really stepped up in his absence,” Baumeler said.

Campbell, who made the move to the Twin Ovals from the-then Hobart City Demons in the preseason, was proud of the way the side went about Saturday’s win over the Blues, rating it as one of the best he has been a part of.

“It’s up there. We had our meeting during the week and there weren’t many senior players, there were a lot of young guys and players who had just come into the side.

“That’s what made it really good. It was a collective effort of hunger and pressure and hunting opposition players.

“The guys have been working really hard and to finally get that reward for effort and to be able to sing the song and enjoy the win after eight weeks of being close was really enjoyable,” Campbell said.

IC: Solstice Digital

The Tigers were well-serviced by every player on the field, with some unheralded names standing tall as the Tigers harassed the Blues out of their usual precision-kicking game.

“Mitchell Cooke came into the side and kicked goals, Micah Reynolds shut down the best forward in the state (Mitch Thorp), it gives those guys a lot of belief and I think that will be really important across the back end of this year moving into next season,” Campbell said.

The Tigers’ next task will be a clash with Clarence at Blundstone Arena this Saturday as the club looks to build off this platform.

“Clarence are coming off a loss and will be hungry. They’re tough. Jake Cox is a super player, Jeromey Webberley has played every game. Their defence is really strong. We will get to work on them and see how they have been going about it

“The vibe and attitude around our group has been first class, but breaking through for that win will give us that little bit of confidence that our best footy can match it and that if we string together four quarters we can beat anyone,” Baumeler said.

Bupa TSL ANZAC Day Match Preview

Round five of the Bupa Tasmanian State League gets underway with a blockbuster ANZAC Day clash between Tigers and Glenorchy at Kingston’s Twin Ovals. Here’s what you need to know ahead of the big clash!


Wednesday 25th April

Tigers v. Glenorchy (Twin Ovals) – 3:00pm

Last Time They Met: Tigers 8.8 (56) def. by Glenorchy 16.13 (109) – Round 20, 2017 at Twin Ovals

Form Guide (most recent first): Tigers – L B L W | Glenorchy – W W W B

This ANZAC Day rivalry continues to gather momentum heading into the 2018 season, with this match looming as a crucial one for both outfits.

Glenorchy enter the round unbeaten and full of confidence with a host of stars flying high.

Tigers enter the clash with a 1-2 win-loss record after going down to Lauderdale in round four, but the side has shown across the opening few rounds that its best football is capable of putting any side under pressure.

The midfield battle will be a fascinating one with Glenorchy stars Brayden Webb, John Geard and Jaye Bowden and Tiger trio Lachy Clifford, Will Campbell and Ryan Matthews all built for the big stage.

The Tigers will be up against in when trying to curtail the influence of Glenorchy’s dynamic forward line, but with Mitch Carter, Jake Doran and young gun Nic Hutchinson all in good form, the Tigers will face the challenge with belief.

The hosts will also have extra incentive, with captain Samael Rice and Luke Graham both set to play their 50th matches for the club.

Both sides will be without stars, however, with Rhys Mott’s two-match suspension and Marcus Davies’ injury seeing two of the competition’s guns missing from the match.

With immense firepower right across the ground and some red hot form to boot, Glenorchy will rightfully go into this clash as favourites and should come away with the chocolates, but expect the Tigers to take it right up to the Magpies in what promises to be a hard-fought contest.

Players to watch:

Lachlan Clifford (Tigers): Much has been made of the Tigers’ high-profile recruits in Will Campbell and Ryan Matthews, but former Mariners captain and emerging star Lachy Clifford’s role within this side shouldn’t be understated. A fearless midfielder with a knack for accumulating plenty of the football, Clifford is built for the biggest stage.

Mitch Rainbird (Glenorchy): Rainbird has kicked six goals across his opening three matches of 2018, providing a dangerous presence inside forward 50 when he isn’t impacting the game as a midfielder. Rainbird is a difficult match-up due to his versatility and expect him to again play a key role in this ANZAC Day blockbuster.

Selected Teams


B: N. Hutchinson, J. Doran, B. Rees

HB: B. Donnelly, H. Johnston, S. Rice

C: E.  Burrows-Cheng, L.  Watt, W.  Campbell

HF: C. Bryant, M. Carter, B. Grant

F: S. Duigan, T. Carter, L. Graham

R: H. Thompson, R. Matthews, L. Clifford

Int: B. Graham, A. Humphrey, J. Manix, B. McCulloch

Emg: M. Cooke, J. Lister, P. Reihana, C. Woolley

In: H. Johnston, T. Carter, J. Manix

Out: O. Burrows-Cheng,  M. Davies, C. Woolley



B: J. Arnold, J. Grant, M. Joseph

HB: J. Millhouse, H. Gunther, B. Quinn

C: D.  Joseph, C. Daly, J.  Webb

HF: B. Kamaric, J. Bowden, Z. Webster

F: J. Bearman, M. Walker, M. Rainbird

R: C. Duffy, J. Geard, B. Webb

Int: B. Bester, A. Roberts, C. Salter, J. Stevenson

Emg: A. Brennan, D. Coppleman, R. Oakley, H. Parker

In: J. Bearman, J. Grant, B. Bester

Out: R. Mott, D. Coppleman, H. Parker


Live coverage via ‘Spreaker’. 

Score updates via the official TSL App for Android and  Apple.

Quarterly score updates on the TSL Facebook page

Regular updates on the official TSL Twitter account

Photos and vision on the official TSL Instagram account

Bombers Chalk Up First Win In Tight Tussle With Tigers

Lauderdale’s winless run to start 2018 ended under the bright lights of Friday night football after the Bombers were made to earn an impressive victory over the Tigers at the Twin Ovals, TSL Digital Reporter Ryan Rosendale writes. 

With a 0-3 win-loss record heading into Friday night, the pressure was well and truly on Lauderdale to get their season off and running, and after a tight tussle at the Twin Ovals, the Bombers got their first win of the season with a 27-point victory over the Tigers.

In an early contender for game of the season, the Bombers and Tigers fought out a highly entertaining contested game of football with the men in red and black running out eventual winners 16.14 (110) to 13.5 (83).

After a tight first quarter and the loss of Bombers star Josh McGuiness to an early hamstring injury, it was all the Tigers throughout the second with the hosts going into the break with a handy 20-point lead.

“He (McGuinness) felt a pinch and he tried to run on it and said it just kept grabbing so we didn’t want to risk it any further and tear it, so he came off and that was pretty early in the game so we were down a midfield rotation but the boys battled well,” Bombers interim-coach Clint Brown said post-match.

Things eventually clicked for Lauderdale after the long-break, with a string of consecutive goals midway through the third-term giving the Bombers a six-point lead at the final change, thanks in-part to an electric performance from Tim Mosquito who finished with four goals.

“Timmy’s great and he’s a funny little character and when I said to him at half-time ‘I’m moving you forward’, his eyes just lit up.”

“I thought we brought them (the Northern Territory recruits) into the game throughout the second half; you know they play a pretty slick game of footy and sometimes when we fart-ass about with the ball it takes them out of the game so getting it in there quickly certainly helps them do their thing,” Brown said.

The Bombers’ second-half momentum and effort eventually got them on the winners list, with Brown showing signs of relief post-match.

“Windy’s (Darren Winter) been calling me Owen all week, so he can drop that one,” Brown laughed.

“It’s a bit of relief and sort of rewards the boys for all the hard work they’ve put in over the summer.”

“Bar the Glenorchy game, I think there’s certainly been effort there against Clarence and again against Launceston last week, but we probably just weren’t good enough with finishing off our goals. Tonight we battled hard in the second-half and capitalised on some of the good play we had which was probably the biggest difference,” he said.

For the Bombers, Haydn Smith was prolific all night in the ruck and was given best afield honours while Brown was pleased with Leo Harrison’s tagging role on Tigers star Ryan Matthews.

Despite the attention, Matthews finished with two majors and gathered plenty of the ball, yet it was midfielder partner Lachy Clifford who was able to get off the leash and play his best game in Tigers colours.

Tigers coach Trent Baumeler, while pleased with the effort and intent of his group, said it was just a small period of the game where the Tigers slipped.

“We probably got a lot of things right for 110 minutes but there was a little ten minute lapse were the things we identified Lauderdale would do well (pre-game), we gave them the opportunity to do and it ended up costing us… so now it’s all about finding that extra ten minutes to get that consistent 120 minute performance.”

With the Tigers now preparing to face the red-hot unbeaten Glenorchy on ANZAC Day this Wednesday, the group will be sweating on the fitness of star defender Marcus Davies who went down with a knee injury in the second-half of Friday’s game.

“In the lead up we will talk about what an honour and a privilege it is to play on what’s a pretty important day in our country and our history, it’s not something we’ll take for granted.”

“We’ve just got to embrace playing on a really big occasion where everyone is watching us with a chance to showcase our brand.”

Burrows-Cheng Thriving In The Yellow & Black

Round one of a new football season always brings with it the emergence of new and exciting stars to watch, and Tigers forward Edward Burrows-Cheng has certainly emerged as one such player after a dynamic opening round.

Burrows-Cheng kicked four goals in his TSL debut for the Tigers, rejoining his junior club after several seasons playing for and being club president at Bond University in Queensland while studying a law degree.

His return to the Tigers looks to be a key one for a club eager to push into finals and premiership calculations in 2018.

Burrows-Cheng, 22, provides great versatility to the Tigers forward set-up, with the capacity to work up the ground, compete well in the air and at ground level, but insists the highlight for himself on Good Friday was playing alongside his younger brother, Oliver.

“It was a long-time dream of mine to play with Oliver. The six-year age gap between us meant it was quite hard and everything had to coincide at the right time, but it was a proud moment.

“He gave me my second goal and I gave him one back. It meant a lot to the family for us to play together,” he said.

Much like their AFL namesake, the Tigers have opted for a small forward set-up for 2018, something Burrows-Cheng sees as a key strength moving forward.

“I feel pretty comfortable up forward and the group are working well together. We have a lot of young bloke, so I am the oldest out of our forward group, but if we can keep developing as a group I reckon we will be really good.

“We are a small forward line and with that comes pace and pressure. The likes of Connor Bryant and Cooper Sawdy who have gone through the Mariners program will be massive assets for the club into the future.

“We can apply pressure and put that onto opposition defenders which will make us a difficult group to play against,” he said.

Burrows-Cheng, who is currently completing his legal practical, as well as being a member of the Tigers’ leadership group, and as a youth women’s coach, is loving his time back at the Twin Ovals, insisting the tough nature of Tassie footy is a welcome return.

“I have been pretty blessed when these games have been quite warm so the ball movement is pretty similar. The physicality I was used to before I left has come back a bit more.

“I had missed that part of Tassie footy, it’s a part of the game I love,” he said.

That physicality is set to go up another notch this weekend when the Tigers meet North Launcetson at UTAS Stadium.

“It will go up a couple of levels against North Launcetson. We are looking forward to testing ourselves against the premiers, we are ready for it and it is something we have been preparing for all preseason.

“They did a good job against Launceston so we will go up there and give it everything we’ve got.

“If we can play our brand of football by our values, I’m confident we can make a push for the finals,” Burrows-Cheng said.

2017 TSL Season Preview – Tigers


Written by Alex FitzGerald

TSL Inception: 2014

Home Ground: Twin Ovals, Kingston

Guernsey Colours: Yellow and Black

Head Coach: Aaron Vince

Senior Assistant Coach: Brad Willis

Senior Coaching Staff: Marcus Davies, Jon Lister.

Captain: Tim Peterson

Leadership Group: TBC

Rivals: Hobart City Demons, Lauderdale Bombers

Key Clashes: Round 1 vs Burnie at Twin Ovals on April 1

Round 3 vs Hobart City at Twin Ovals on April 14 (Good Friday)

Round 4 vs Glenorchy at KGV on April 25 (Anzac Day)

2016: Ninth

Ins: Mitchell Carter (Boulder City), Cameron Johns, Cameron Woolley, Hayden Crack, Josh Huizing (Huonville), Toby Cowen (Cygnet), Huw Graham, Ben Graham (Sandy Bay), Michael Booth, Ryan Rinaldi (year off)

Outs: Josh Halton (Cygnet), Daniel Golding, Jarrod Lawler, Ben Bowerman, Bevan Roberts, Luke Graham (Huonville), Jordon Roberts (Lauderdale), Micah Reynolds (Interstate), James Caulfield, Daniel Caulfield (Hobart Tigers)

2016 Recap:

2016 started well for the Tigers, smashing Hobart City in Round 1 and backing it up with a strong win over Clarence at home in Round 3.  From then on it was tough going, with a number of senior players such as Josh Halton, Marcus Davies, Tim Peterson and Jordon Roberts all succumbing to injury, and a number of big losses followed as a result. The young Tigers rallied to challenge Launceston and Lauderdale late in the season, showing glimpses of their potential, but by that stage finals were out of the question.

The new leader at the Twin Ovals, Aaron Vince!

2017 Pre-Season:

With the shock departure of newly appointed Head Coach Scott Matheson announced just a fortnight prior to the season opener against Burnie, it could be argued that the Tigers are heading into 2017 in less than ideal fashion.  President Steve Old has been quick to throw his support behind the young playing group and the board’s decision, with a replacement from inside the club in Aaron Vince, installed as new head honcho.  Senior Assistant Coach Brad Willis has already seen the positive effects that the off-season break has had on his charges, with all players eager to impress at training and putting their hands up to play Round 1.  The Tigers’ coaching group are pleased with how the whole list is developing over the pre-season, and believe every single player on the list is capable of playing senior football in 2017.  The professional approach shown by 2016 Best and Fairest winner Will Cleeland has impressed, with a club insider describing him as “at another level with his preparation.”

While the club are focused on team performance over that of individuals, the word from inside the Tiger camp is that Cameron Johns, Oliver Farid, Jack Pearce, Hugh Dixon and Jakob Lister have the potential to be break-out players this season.

The Season Ahead:

The Tigers will go into the season with a focus on improvement on last year’s scorelines and structures, and how they handle themselves both on and off the field.  Willis believes that Strength and Conditioning Coach Alistair De Winter has prepared his players to be more competitive physically against the bigger bodies in the TSL in 2017.  Off-season issues are believed to have brought the young Tigers closer together, a united front that cannot be underestimated when they take to the field this season.  Having a group of players recently surpassing the 50 games mark and the resultant experience and  maturity will also assist the Tigers throughout the 18 home and away matches.

The leadership group is still to be confirmed, but according to Willis it will consist of some younger players and those who have displayed leadership qualities across the pre-season.  If the Tigers stay fit and enthusiastic, play consistent football, and beat the teams they match up well on, such as Lauderdale, they have every chance to improve on last year’s ninth-place finish in 2017.

2017 Prediction: 7th-8th.

New Tigers coach will crack whip to get young clubs running

By Simeon Thomas-Wilson, Mercury

HE has arguably the toughest job in Tasmanian footy, but the Tigers’ new senior coach Scott Matheson says he is up to the challenge and will have the cubs baring their teeth by adding some defensive steel.

As revealed by the Mercury, the former WAFL premiership player with Subiaco yesterday flew into Tasmania from Queensland to sign a three-year contract with this year’s TSL wooden spooners.

He will replace Adam Henley, who coached the Tigers in their first three seasons in the State League, and said the young list his predecessor had helped build was a key attraction of the job.

“First and foremost it was probably the ground size [at the Twin Ovals] and the young group,” Matheson said.

“We want to develop a team that can really outrun other teams.

“We do have a young group, but it’s exciting the energy they bring.”

In 2015 the Tigers tasted their first victory ever, and then added three more to the win column.

The TSL’s youngest club won its first two games of 2016 before going winless for the rest of the season and claiming a second wooden spoon.

Matheson, who last played in Tasmania for Clarence two years ago, said he was up to the challenge of turning the side into a consistently competitive side.

 “I am up for it,” he said.

“I’m very discipline-orientated, hard on defence, so we’ll structure around that and go from there.

“It’s going to be the running style for me – if you can’t run you won’t play, it’s as simple as that.”

The 38-year-old, who also played with Burnie in its 2001 NTFL premiership win and in the VFL with the Devils in 2004, said most of the Tigers group had signed on for 2017 and beyond.

But Matheson said it was still too soon to tell whether state team representative and vice-captain Brandon Batchelor would be in black and yellow next year.

“That’s yet to be confirmed,” he said.

Matheson’s appointment leaves just North Launceston and Glenorchy to lock down their senior coaching positions.

Tigers prepare to hunt for new coach

By James Bresnehan, The Mercury

THEY begged him not to go, now the Tigers will hunt far and wide to replace their departed coach Adam Henley.

After eight years with the club, including winning an SFL premiership, and three years with the TSL start-up team, Henley stepped down following a difference of opinion with a member of the club’s football department.

Tigers president Steve Old said “Pinner” would be hard to replace.

“We are going to work out what’s best for the club, then we will advertise to all and sundry and see who applies,” Old said.

“Adam has done a fantastic job of turning these young guys into a TSL team so I would think there would be a lot of people wanting to put their hand up to coach the Tigers.

“We’ve got no one in mind. It will be a matter of deciding whether we want a playing coach or a non-playing coach.

“We will make a decision on the best applicant and what’s in the best interest of our footy club.”

Old found out by text last Tuesday that Henley planned to resign.

“When I spoke to him, Adam said he’d had a conversation with someone at the footy club about where the club was heading,” Old said.

“Adam agreed with some of it. He didn’t agree with all of it. He then told me he was going to step down from the role. I tried to talk him out of it but after he slept on it he decided the best thing to do was step down.”

Henley told the players after their final-round loss to Glenorchy at KGV on Friday night.

Tigers chief suggests dumping salary cap

By Brett Stubbs, The Mercury

TIGERS president Steve Old has called for open slather on player payments by scrapping the TSL salary cap.

The TSL salary cap is $80,000 a season, with all payments to assistant and specialist playing coaches to be included, but Old said axing the salary cap would end speculation and rumours on player payments.

“I’m not a fan of salary caps. My theory is if you can’t police it, why have it?” Old said.

“Hypothetically, if Glenorchy and the Tigers wanted to pay $300,000 and they could afford it, why shouldn’t we do it? There has got to be very clear processes in place put in for AFL Tas to monitor clubs to make sure they are not breaking themselves, but in the end if a club can afford it, why not?

“I don’t think any club is in a position to go stupid with their salary cap, but in the end I think [payments outside the cap] is happening anyway.

“If you can’t monitor it, just open it up and we can be open slather.”

The old statewide league folded as clubs went broke trying to buy premierships by buying players, but Old said clubs had evolved since then.

“There are some very smart operators running football clubs now and they do run it like a business so they are not going to put themselves in that position,” he said.

“If everyone is honest with the contracts they sign and where their budgets are at and they keep updating AFL Tas with their financials, then AFL Tas can oversee it.”

The Tigers have taken a step backwards this year, going from four wins last season to just two with two games to go as injuries and underage representative football hit the club.

Old said the club would undertake a full club review from the president down to the boot studder.

Coach Adam Henley was yet to be reappointed and would be part of the review, but Old was happy with his work to date and part of the review would be making sure he had the support he required.

“It is not all about wins and losses for us, it is about the culture and other things,” Old said.

“But if you are not getting the wins you’ve got to be respectful to your members and supporters and review what your club is doing.

“We are slightly disappointed with our on-field performances but we do have reasons for that. We would like to improve that.”

He said the Tigers would be challenging Huon region SFL players to step up to the TSL as well as scouring the country for a ruckman and other key position players.

Bombers finish too strong for Tigers

By Simeon Thomas-Wilson, The Mercury

LAUDERDALE staged a stirring comeback to break the Tigers’ hearts at the Twin Ovals, taking out a thriller 11.19 (85) to 9.13 (67).

With zero wins to its name since round three, the Tigers looked to be heading for a rare victory after riding the wind in the first quarter to open up a 35-point lead.

They maintained their strong start in the second to take a 31-point lead into the main break, but in the third and fourth it was virtually all the Bombers.

Bryce Walsh led the way with three goals in the second half, to go with 28 possessions, as the Bombers came back strongly.

They kicked four goals to one in the third to bring the margin back to eight at the final break and took the lead for the first time at the 12-minute mark of the fourth quarter when Walsh kicked his third.

Toutai Havea extended the Bombers’ lead five minutes later over a wasteful Tigers – who missed three easy goals in the final stanza – but a wonder goal by Jack Pearce brought the margin back to four.

However just a minute later Campbell Hooker re-established Lauderdale’s lead and the jig was up for the Tigers.