RD10 '18: Demons vs Swans (Women's Conf.)

Jimmy "Libba" Exelby | 25.07.18

Clapham Demons 3.8.26 def London Swans 2.1.13

The Conference Women’s Round 10 clash against the Swans had shaped up to be the Game of the Round. Both teams on equal points, winner goes straight through to the Grand Final, loser would play against the winner of the Putney v Wildcats game the following week for a spot in the Big Dance. It was always going to be a highly competitive game, but after a real tasty effort against Putney the previous round, it was a challenge that the SheDee’s could  take head on.  

At this point of the season, we could go through a play-by-play, quarter-by-quarter run through of the game. It would be great to talk about the individual efforts by Steely, Onora and Macca in the midfield. Anyone who was at the game would have seen how Jnr held her own in the ruck against a clearly taller opponent, and how she moved around the ground tirelessly in attack and defence to give the Demons every possibility to use the ball. We could froth on the fact that Tinni shut down her opponent on the wing, and when presented with the ball, cleanly moved the ball onto the Half Forwards.  

There were countless moments of individual brilliance during the game, including Longy’s hit just inside the centre square to shepherd off the oncoming Swans player (that was a fierce as Boxy when someone loses one of the Women’s footys), it might have been a touch high, but it was the type of pressure the girls needed to bring to the game! Jessie’s flair whenever she got the ball gave the team a boost every time she gained possession. Goals to Buckets and Gnat showed the level of skill and execution needed at this time of the season in our Forward line. Selfless running and clean disposals from Meeks and Buckets resulted in a spectacular team goal finished off by Noms. The backline were clinical and worked as a unit; the work rate of Zoro, Damo, Juicy, Jo, Simo, Beast, Anita and Steph kept us in the game.  

It’s great to draw on those tasty moments during the game, but they wont help us next week. The focus needs to be on how each individual can play their role within their units, and how each unit can do their part for the team. It’s about getting ourselves in the greatest possible position prior to the centre bounce (who are we kidding, it’s a ball up), and making the most of our opportunities next weekend. While it would be great to reflect on how we held off the Swans come back in the 4th quarter, it’s a better opportunity for us as squad to realise we need to be better at putting the foot down when we are in the lead, and not give the opposition any chance to get back in the game. It’s about raising the bar, taking nothing for granted and making sure we’re not second guessing ourselves when we’re out there in the Big Dance.  

Don’t get me wrong, it was a great game, and we’ve had a bloody good run to this point.  We still need to channel our Shannon Noll and Lift. We’re a pretty lucky club in the fact that we seem to have more Grand Final appearances than pics of Denzo and Dundon in Budgy Smugglers sliding into my DMs (seriously boys…I’m glad you’ve ditched the Curtains of Shame, but maybe just ask me how my day was rather than just a pic of you in your smugglers every 3 days). But it’s one thing to make the Big Dance and another to win it.  Let’s make the most of the week off, and get around each other at training, enjoy ourselves, challenge ourselves and make sure we are in the best possible position to make the most of our opportunity.

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