Hancocks player Sara Rogers is met by a Bellbowrie tackler during Saturday’s season-opening A-grade match at Raceview. Hancocks won 3-0.
Hancocks player Sara Rogers is met by a Bellbowrie tackler during Saturday’s season-opening A-grade match at Raceview. Hancocks won 3-0. Claudia Baxter

Deano tackles dilemma

WHEN you haven't got holidays and need $4000 to represent Australia, it's a tough predicament.

For Norths speedster Dean Jeffrey, his only short-term option was to withdraw from the overseas trip.

After scoring the match-winning goal to complete a double in Saturday night's opening A-grade men's match, Jeffrey revealed a dilemma many top players can relate to.

"I got called into the Australian Country side to go to Malaysia in four weeks but I had to knock it back due to money and starting a new job three weeks ago," the spray painter said.

"I only had four weeks' notice. It's four grand there, plus spending money on the Premier League the weekend after.

"I'm only casual, so I'm not getting paid for the time off."

However, "Deano" is hoping to contest the next national country championships in July/August, after helping out South Australia and being one of its best performers last year.

Jeffrey, 24, carried that form into the new Ipswich season, scoring two vital goals in the Devils' 4-2 victory over Hancock Brothers.

The first half at the Ipswich Hockey Complex was marred by rain, which left puddles of water on the field.

However, after the scores were locked 1-1 at the break, the water drained in the second half to allow Norths to come from 2-1 down to score a confidence-boosting win.

Hancocks regular Dean Pavitt scored the first goal from a penalty stroke awarded in the first half.

Norths equalised through Anthony Woodward before Hancocks went 2-1 up in the 45th minute from a Brent Nicholls field goal.

Nick Maddocks scored Norths' other goal.

"We've got a good young side. We should bond together fairly well," Jeffrey said.

"We've just got to get all together at training.

"We're doing heaps of Monday night stuff with Ipswich (representative side) but we've only had two or three sessions as a team."

Norths will also be strengthened by the return of Tobias Figura, who has been playing in the Brisbane competition.

Jeffrey said it was tough going in the first half of Saturday night's rain-affected match.

"You couldn't do much with the ball," the striker said.

In Sunday's A-grade game, premiers Easts began their title defence with a 4-2 win over Wests.

The Ipswich A-grade women's competition opened with Hancocks beating Bellbowrie 3-0 on Saturday night.

Thistles returned to A-grade with a 2-2 draw against Norths.