Was super disappointed with that second quarter. Thought we did ok in the first, Zaharakis, Stewart & to a lesser extent Joe missed crucial chances. Finals is about taking your chances & unfortunately we missed the chance to put some scoreboard pressure on them.
When they upped the ante in the second we just couldn’t go with them. We refused to stop Kennedy & Parker waltzing the ball away from the centre & Goddard’s placement as the spare in defence was woeful as he kept ambling in off the square as Sydney kicked the ball over his head. He needed to be deeper & impact against either Buddy or Sinclair. I can’t believe that spud Sinclair tore Hurley a new one. Even given the sheer weight of ball going forward, Hurley needed to be better than that. No doubt he was sore, kept clutching at that shoulder & didn’t seem to be moving like he usually does but if you declare yourself fit…
The only positive I can glean from that game is that as a group, they cannot be under any illusions how far they’ve got to go to be competitive against the best. I’m of the belief that experiencing that finals heat can only improve our resolve over the summer. I didn’t expect finals this year after not only last year, but the mentally crippling 4 previous years. I’m super proud of our club to do what they’ve done this season. If we cannot improve next year, then this experience will be for nothing but I’m confident we will be better for this experience in the long run.
The silver lining of the result is our fixture next year will be “middle six” & with Port also losing, pick 11 in the draft. Begley, Parish, Merrett & McGrath in particular will be better for that experience & some natural improvement from the squad below should see us continue to improve.
For all the cr@p Woosha is copping right now, I think it’s a good thing he’s at the helm. If anyone hasn’t watched his video post game, have a look at it. He says the right things & so far I think he’s done what he said he would. I can tell you the players love him & want to play for him and that being the case I think we’ll rise from this.
I think most footy people acknowledge that Sydney are not a 6th ranked team in this competition. They were ravaged by injury early & lost a few close games. If they won those, they’re in the top 4 & not our problem week one. We were most unfortunate to cop them up front on their home deck and this club has played in 3 grand finals in the past 5 years, they are a hardened finals outfit. We had 60 games of finals experience & the majority of those were in two players, Goddard & Kelly.
I’m disappointed as fk this morning but overall happy with the season.