WHAT A MARK: Cats’ Zac Willis during the Cats v Maroochydore game.
WHAT A MARK: Cats’ Zac Willis during the Cats v Maroochydore game. James Loose

AFL: “Season starts now” for Roos ahead of semi

AFL: The Maroochy Roos have had the wood on the reigning premiers Mayne all year, but coach Brett Maloney knows that counts for nothing ahead of his team's semi-final clash today.

In the midst of a topsy-turvy season that has seen them trade losses with finals minnows Caloundra, the Roos have toppled Mayne both times this season.

Despite ending Mayne's gigantic 26 game winningstreak, the Roos will still travel to Mayne as underdogs after finishing the QFA North season in second place.

Maloney said his side was playing the best football it had played all year.

"We hit a flat spot in the middle of the season, but our footy has been progressively improving and it started with the Mayne victory at home," he said.

"It would have been easy for the boys to drop off and go through the motions playing two bottom sides over the past two games.

"But the boys have stay focused and we smashed Moreton Bay by 180 points."

All eyes will fall on the matchup between Mayne's golden boot winner Luke Faulkner and Maoochy's stalwart fullback Nigel Baker.

Despite Faulkner's dominating year in front of the stick, Baker has kept the fullforward goalless in both matches this year.

"Faulkner is obviously the danger," Maloney said.

"He only needs 15 minutes of clear footy, but Nigel has been terrific on him.

"He's strong physically and mentally and he doesn't like to be beaten."

Other players to watch are ruckman Jacob Simpson who returns after a bout with the flu and in-form midfielder Daniel Dzufer who kicked 13 goals last week.

"He (Dzufer) is a class act, a step above most in the competition and that's not going overboard."

Simspson replaces Kane Tyson who dislocated his finger last week and 16-year-old Colt Jason Kennedy is replaced by his Colt captain Sam Mckenzie.



Today, Mayne, 2:30pm