Grand Finals '19 - Demons v Wildcats (Premiership)
Frank Caldow | 19.08.19
Wandsworth Demons 3.4.22 def. by West London Wildcats 14.8.92
After a grinding win against the Lions the Prem Boys booked a spot in the big dance for the 4th year running.
Fielding the strongest team for the season and having a healthy turnout for training during the week we were well placed to match it with West London who hadn’t been defeated all season.
The first part of the opening quarter was an arm wrestle, applying the pressure that was required to create a contest. When Brayden took a contested mark and went back and kicked the opening goal it seemed that we had come to play. As the quarter progressed the Wildcats did start to win more ball through the middle of the ground and thanks to some crafty work from their forwards they were able to put some scoreboard pressure back on us, going into the first break with a 12 point advantage.
The Wildcats came out strong in the 2nd term, getting right on top through the midfield, giving their forwards repeat opportunities through bulk forward 50 entries. We were unable to rebound from the defensive half effectively and when we did have forward entries we didn’t have the presence at ground level to create scoring chances. It was a scoreless quarter for us whilst wildcats helped themselves to 5 goals to take a 40 point lead into the main break.
We needed a fast start in the 3rd term to keep the dream alive and although the endeavour and commitment at the contest was there we were being beaten by a much fitter, stronger and well drilled outfit. We continued to fight but with nearly everything going the Wildcats way we went into the final change 50 points down.
We kicked the opening goal of the final term but when Wildcats responded straight away with 2 of their own it summed up our day, trying hard but being outclassed by a superior team. We eventually went down by 70 points.
Brayden tried hard all day through the middle kicking half the teams goals and winning plenty of midfield ball. Kirby was excellent down back, winning his direct matchup and providing a rock in defence. Gavin fought hard all day in the ruck and took several strong contested marks.
The result was bitterly disappointing but the endeavour and attitude of the playing group couldnt be questioned, fighting out the game right to the end. A huge thankyou to those guys that have played their last game for the club including Adam Jeffery, Brayden Irving, Nick Dundon, Ryan Richardson, Chip, Gia and Ki Currie.
As we look to next season it is clear the Wildcats have raised the bar in terms of fitness and conditioning, beating us in all 4 hitouts by an average margin of 73 points. For those guys that are sticking around, if we want to be competitive with them at the pointy end of the season we need to look at increasing training load and investing into training to ensure we are more organised and able to run out 4 full quarters of football.
I hope everyone enjoys the rest of summer and we look forward to seeing you all in pre-season
Best: B.Irving, I.Kirby, N.Dundon, G.Murray, DJ, Needles
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