THE finishing positions in the Shoalhaven Senior Football competition are no clearer after last week’s round.
Shoalhaven United are still the only side guaranteed a spot, while reigning premiers Gerringong will not have the chance to defend their premiership after last week’s loss to Illaroo.
This leaves six teams fighting it out for three positions.
Culburra moved to second after a big 7-nil win over Basin, while Sussex returned to the top four courtesy of the bye and Shoalhaven Heads’ nil-all draw with United.
Illaroo are now in fifth due to their 3-2 win over Gerringong, and Huskisson remain in the race after a massive 10-nil win over Milton.
With two rounds to go it is impossible to predict who will make it and who will miss out.
There are three hugely important games this weekend with the six teams that are still in contention all playing each other.
If the three higher placed teams win, the top four will be decided.
But if the lower placed teams win, it will all come down to the last round.
Match of the roundBomaderry v Illaroo - Bomaderry Oval, Saturday, 3.15pm
THE match of the round is between Bomaderry and Illaroo.
Bomaderry have been sitting comfortably in the top four for most of the year, but with two rounds to go they find themselves under a bit of pressure.
They appeared to have Shoalhaven Heads’ measure at half-time in their most recent match, but fell away and lost a game that they appeared to have control of.
Bomaderry coach Nathan Aldridge will know that a win in this match will guarantee them a position in the top four.
Aldridge will be looking for big performances from Dale Russell, Cameron Nelson, Dave Hampton, Matt Kellett, Mitch Cornell, Daniel Frew and Scott Fagerlund.
Illaroo have come from the clouds to be on the verge of playing finals football. Only four rounds ago Illaroo were languishing in eighth position, seven points off the pace.
They are now in fifth position only one point behind fourth placed Sussex. Illaroo have always had the side to make the finals and were one time competition favourites, but injury and unavailability interrupted their season. Coach Andrew Timbs will want Matt Rowe, Sam Leedham, Aaron Crittenden, Joe Hockey, John Muggleton, Brendan Thorpe and Brett Martin to all be at their best in this important match.
The first round was a 2-all draw and a similar result is expected in this game.
One point separates Sussex and HeadsSussex v Shoalhaven Heads - Thompson St Sporting Complex, Saturday, 3.15pm
ANOTHER game of great importance is between Sussex and Shoalhaven Heads.
These two sides have been swapping positions over the last couple of weeks and are only one point apart on the table.
Sussex were having a great second round until they came up against Culburra a couple of weeks ago and were beaten 4-nil.
Sussex coach Neil Wiggins will want his side to forget that result and concentrate on staying in the top four.
Wiggins will be looking for an improved defensive effort as they have the worst record out of the top six sides.
But they are strong in attack and have the leading goal scorer in the competition in Rohan Daley.
Shoalhaven Heads still remain undefeated in the second round and if they win their final two games it is highly likely they will finish in the top four.
This would be an incredible effort considering where they were sitting at the halfway point of the competition.
They, along with United, are the form team in the competition and coach Brad Page has done a great job to get them to this position.
He would be disappointed with the lack of urgency his side showed last week against United considering their season was on the line, and would hope this improves this week.
Sussex won the first round 3-2, but Heads are travelling better now and should at least get a draw.
In-form sides fight it outHuskisson v Culburra - Huskisson Sporting Fields, Saturday, 3.15pm
THE other game that will have a huge bearing on the top four will be between Huskisson and Culburra.
Midway through the year both these sides were unbeaten and it appeared as though both could go through the season undefeated.
Huskisson had a disastrous start to the second round when they lost their first six games.
They have got back on track with big wins over Basin and Milton, but neither of these sides are in contention.
On the plus side they have managed to keep a clean sheet in both of these games for the first time this year.
They have by far the best attacking record in the competition, mainly due to scoring 16 goals in the last two weeks.
After a late season slump Culburra have returned to form with solid wins over Sussex and Basin.
They have moved back in to second position and coach Steve Melocco will want to stay in this spot to get a second chance when the finals come around.
They managed their big win over Basin without the services of Corey Ryan, which is a good sign for the team.
Steve Gray, Keiran Witt, Blair Sutherland, Bobby Hill and Dale Blundell will all be looking to continue their recent good form.
The first round was a 2-all draw, and while this game will be close also, Huskisson should be desperate enough to keep their season alive with a win.
Sides fight to finish on a highMilton v Gerringong - Lighthouse Oval, Saturday, 3.15pm
THE final match in this round is between Milton and Gerringong.
Both these sides are out of contention.
Milton has leaked 16 goals in the last two weeks and appear to be looking forward to the end of the year.
It was only a few weeks ago that they should have shared the points with competition champions Shoalhaven United, but their form has obviously dropped off since then.
Coach Neil Wade will be looking for an improved performance so as they can finish the season on a high note.
After last week’s loss to Illaroo, the Gerringong side will not get the chance to defend their premiership.
Ian Morris returned to the score sheet last week and coach Andy Lockard will want the side to finish the year with a couple of wins.
Lockard will be looking to Dean Land, Michael Reminis, Jack Lowrie, Gary Vian, Robbie Franks, Jason Lockard and Chris Reminis for good performances.
Gerringong won the first round 1-nil, but Milton have struggled in recent weeks and Gerringong should win quite easily.