Round 1 against the Wildcats is always a fierce contest which after a long and cold pre-season couldn’t come quickly enough. The battle was made a bit easier for all of us with games being moved to the Common, a fantastic result being able to play on our home deck.
The first quarter was a tug of war with both teams vying to grab the early momentum. The ‘Pressure’ that won us the Premiership last year was there from the get go which was fantastic to see considering we had exactly half of our team playing their first game for the club. We went into the first term a point down, the game was very much there to be won.
We were dealt a blow early in the 2nd quarter – VC Ricci Bobby being sent to hospital with suspected cracked ribs. This left us down a ROW rotation for the remainder of the match. Despite this our midfield started to get right on top, with big Frazer giving us first use and with the new big bodied midfield winning most 50/50 contests. This gave us repeat forward 50 entries, and got out to a 4 goal lead at the main break. The message was simple, we repeat the pressure and run we have brought and they wont be able to go with us.
We broke the game early in the 3rd quarter with our midfield getting right on top. Jordan Pollard had well over 10 clearances and with Bayden and Jayden leading the charge in a host of players finding dangerous space on the outside, we broke the game open. Declan Bevan kicked 3 up forward and Dundons release kick off the back flank was potent all day. In their first games of AFL football Ollie Haskins joined the illustrious ‘First Kick in first EVER game of AFL’ and Tom Byrne held down a back pocket all day. Both looked very comfortable and their ability to win the majority of 50/50 contests was exciting to see.
Well done to all the boys on a great win to start off the season and we look forward to the Grand Final re-match against Lions in a fortnights time.