DONALD coach Paul Brooks is hopeful his side is not too far away from its breakthrough win.
The Royal Blues will take on fellow battlers Wycheproof-Narraport at Wycheproof Recreation Reserve on Saturday.
Both sides have put in competitive performances in the past fortnight – with the Royal Blues challenging finals hopefuls Boort and Birchip-Watchem, and the Demons getting within three goals of top-three sides St Arnaud and Charlton.
Brooks said his side had started to turn the corner after a tough start to the season.
“The last couple of weeks have been promising and the boys are showing a bit of promise,” he said.
“It’s just been a slow progress.
“We’re starting to get a lot more consistent and there’s a lot of confidence about the group.”
But Brooks said his side would need to be at the top of its game to have success against the Demons.
“We’ll go in with a positive attitude,” he said.
“They’ve been in pretty good form lately and we’ll have to be well and truly at our best for four quarters.”
The Demons’ return to competitiveness has coincided with James Coatsworth’s comeback from a jaw injury.
Coatsworth has been a prominent figure in the forward half, snagging 11 goals in his past two outings.
But Brooks said he would be just one player the Royal Blues had to keep a close eye on, alongside co-coaches Ricky Allan and Boe Bish.
Brody Haddow, Seamus Young and Chris O’Rourke will look to continue their strong form for the Royal Blues, who will be without Luke Carr.
Brooks said Carr’s absence would leave a big hole, however wingman Aaron Grant was set to return.
At Birchip, a top-four berth will be on the line when Birchip-Watchem hosts Boort.
The Magpies currently hold fourth place on the ladder, but a loss to the fifth-placed Bulls would see the teams trade places.
The host has won three of its past four matches and will fancy their chances against the Magpies.
Reigning premier Wedderburn will face the unfamiliar task of bouncing back from defeat.
St Arnaud ended the Redbacks’ 17-match winning streak at the weekend, which will give second-placed Charlton hope of recording its eighth win of the season.
Just 12 points separated the sides in round five, while the Navy Blues will be full of confidence after four consecutive wins.