Grand Final '18: Demons vs Swans (Women's Conference)
Jimmy "Libba" Exelby | 07.08.18
Clapham Demons 1.3.9 def London Swans 1.2.8
We fucking won! The End.
Na but seriously, what a day. North of the River (and a little bit East), sun beating down like the drums in the first song of any Smith Street Band album, and a real tasty opportunity for the Conference Girls to come home with the clubs first ever Conference Women’s flag, and to kick off the #DEE5 5/5 campaign.
The SheDees started with the breeze (great choice Steely), and what a start it was. Lead by Zoro in the Ruck, Meeks, Steely and Macca worked tirelessly to move the ball into the forward 50, and apply more defensive pressure than Denzo applies fake tan during winter whenever the ball came out. Some short, sharp, Alfie Langer like chip-and-chase work on the rebound by Tinni opened the game up for the SheDees. Her attack on the footy was like a mixture of circa 1998 Jonty Rhodes and Ricky Ponting fielding in the covers. Her runs down the wing were like that Stirling Mortlock intercept try (you all know the one I’m talking about). The forward line worked hard to create space and lock the ball in. Jizzy went straight to Bunnings via a bump, pickup and grabbed a snag from deep in the pocket to get our first (and only goal) for the game. At the end of the first, the SheDees were 1.2.8 and Swannies were 0.0.0.
With the Swans having the breeze in the second, Meeks roamed free in the backline to help Juicy, Beast, Soobs and Julz, while Zoro and Simo swapped in the ruck and Steph and Horny rotated in seamlessly in the backline. Demons were gifted a 50m penalty but only managed to add 1 point on to the scoreboard. Some genuinely strong defence from all the girls on the paddock kept the Swans scoreless, and at half time the score was 1.3.9 to 0.0.0. Demons had the breeze again in the 3rd, but the Swans worked tirelessly in defence to keep the SheDees forwards scoreless. Jo O was giving out shepherds and tackles like she was Oprah, and made sure she did her part to keep the Swans scoreless in the third consecutive quarter.
It all came down to the fourth quarter – Swans had the breeze and Demons had a tasty little lead. With Julz stepping up in the Ruck and Simo moving to Fullback, the Dees were working harder than the Common after a month of no sun. What started as 1 behind the ball ended up being, 3, 4, then 17. There were lots of moments of individual brilliance, but it was how the girls worked as a team. With 10 to go, the Swans got on the score board. With 5 to go, they were within 1 point. Buckets, our only player outside the defensive 50 was moved back to help out. It wasn’t pretty footy, but it was what was needed. Each girl stepped up at each contest to either win the footy or lay the tackle. Each girl was accountable for their player, and let their team mates know if there was a swans player without a Demon marking her tighter than Warwick Cappers shorts. The siren went, no one heard it, but the sea of red and blue poured out onto the field led by Xav. Demons got up by a point to win their first Conference flag (so apparently AFL London don’t give out flags either, just cups….seriously, no centre bounces, no flags, what the hell is going on). It was a gusty final quarter, and all 18 on the field, and the 6 on the bench had played their role and put in their all.
It genuinely was a team effort, not just on the day but through the entire season. Girls like, Liv, Jenny, Nic, Jurdy, Molly, USA Julz, Arnie, Goldy and Alyssa who weren’t playing were just as important as those like Macca, Steely, Simo and Horny who played her heart out in the big dance. To the girls that had played great footy in the conference and were rewarded with a spot in the Premiership team were, thank you. Good luck in your final; we’ll be cheering y’all on. Boocky, Noodles and Mitch who stepped up and coached when I had heaps better things to do, thanks guys. Steely, Goldy and Juicy, your leadership during the season was something that the Australian Cricket Team was lacking in the last 12 months. If you ever write a book, please let me know cause I’ll take a page out of it and send it to Smith and Warner. It was a bloody heaps good season, and it’s going to be even bigger and better next year, until then let’s blow the top off a couple frothies and celebrate a tip top season, and a real tasty Grand Final win!
PS. Well done Tinni on getting Best on Ground…#QUEENSLANDER
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