Two weeks off hasn’t necessarily come at a bad time for Melton Phoenix in FFV state league 5 west.

With no role in a catch-up round and then a bye, the Phoenix players have had two weekends off.

Coming off two losses, Phoenix coach Mark Parnis said the rest had probably come at a good time.

“We have a few players who are injured, who can now take a couple of extra weeks to recover,” he said. “David Valenzuela has missed a couple of matches and he’s been pivotal this season. He would have been useful the last few weeks.”

The Phoenix is in eighth place with a 7-3-8 record after a tough start to the year.

Parnis, who is in his first year at the club, said progress was being made.

“Being my first year as senior coach, every game is a learning curve,” he said. “I’m really proud what they are doing. “We’re a couple of steps off the better teams.

“A couple of new personnel next season might make a difference.”

Parnis has been reappointed for next year. He said the club came to him early in the season, offering him a second year.

“The club asked me a while ago and I said I wanted to wait until later in the season,” he said.

“They came back later on and said they still wanted me to stay on.

“The first time I thought was amazing and then, seven to eight weeks later, I thought, ‘Beautiful’, and signed on.”

Parnis said those behind the scenes had put a lot of hard work into the club.

“I love the club and the people around the club,” he said. “Everyone is comfortable coming into the club and it’s credit to the committee members who have put in the hard work.”

After their byes, the Phoenix will face Melbourne Lions and Keilor Wolves in the final two rounds.

Westside Strikers will be looking to finish their season on a high, having already claimed the state league 5 west title. The Strikers are eight points clear of Gisborne, with Gisborne having two matches to play.

In state league 4 west, Spring Hills remains third with three rounds remaining. It can still finish second and earn a promotion playoff spot and is three points behind Truganina Hornets.