We’re just one day away from the opening matches of the 2024 NFNL senior men’s season, and we’ll be treated to two highly anticipated Good Friday clashes to kick off the campaign.

Greensborough vs Eltham

The ‘traditional’ Good Friday clash returns for the first time since 2017 as the Boro and Panthers do battle at Greensborough War Memorial Park.

These two sides produced a nail-biting contest in their last meeting at this ground seven years ago, as Eltham held off a seven goal to two Greensborough run in the second half to prevail by just four points.

That defeat to Eltham on Good Friday in 2017 is the only time the Boro has tasted defeat in their opening game of the season for 14 years, a record they will be hopeful of keeping intact tomorrow.

Greensborough will undoubtably boast an impressive defensive unit again, headlined by captain Jack Johnston and young star Angus Seivers, while the return of 2022 leading goalkicker Zak McCubbin will be a welcome inclusion to a forward line that ranked eighth in total points for last season.

After missing finals for the first time since 2013 last year, the Boro look to be entering a new era, with 2014 club premiership co-captain Matthew Hyde set to lead his side out for the first time as senior men’s coach on Good Friday.

Greensborough’s other co-captain in that premiership triumph will return to the club for the first time since that campaign but will be watching from the opposing coach’s box.

Tim Bongetti was determined to get the Panthers back to playing top flight football when he joined the club as player-coach 12 months ago, and Friday will see him achieve that goal following Eltham’s Division 2 premiership success.

While there’s expected to be quite a few changes from that flag winning squad in this game, Eltham will plan to boast some new faces, including Jaden Collins (Montmorency), James Marchbank (Diamond Creek) and Ben Quaynor (Doncaster East).

They will also still have plenty of their premiership stars at their disposal, with 2023 Team of the Year members Declan Ayres, Jesse Donaldson and Jason McCormick eager to help the Panthers produce their fifth consecutive Good Friday victory.

With sunny conditions forecasted, you can bank on a massive crowd at Greensborough War Memorial Park to witness these two sides resume hostilities to open the 2024 season.