It is always a great challenge when you come up against the Central Districts Football Club, you must always expect a tough, four-quarter tussle. Centrals play a strong two-way game based on hard work and 1v1 contests.
You must be prepared to outwork and be tougher at the contest for four quarters to give yourself a chance in getting the job done. Unfortunately, again, we couldn’t sustain our intensity and effort consistently enough over four quarters to come away with a win.
Our focus going into the game was to have a positive contested possession and ground ball differential to Centrals. At the half-time break we were -21 in Contested Possession, -6 in ground balls and -30 in uncontested possession. Not only were we getting beaten on the inside, but outworked on the outside, also. However, we were able to swing momentum late in the second quarter to give us a feel of what our game must look like to continue challenging Centrals in the second half. WA 4.5 to Centrals 7.9 at the main break.
Our third quarter was impressive and showed a glimpse at just what our group is capable of. Tough, hard-working, organized and exciting. Our contested possession improved to +6 for the quarter and our ground balls improved to +13 as we took out the quarter 5.4 to 1.1 and a 5-point lead heading into the final quarter.
The final quarter ebbed and flowed. We had some great moments, we had moments we’d love to have back again that we will learn from, and there were critical moments that were taken out of our control. Ultimately, some defensive aspects, combined with safe ball movement when we needed to be brave, meant another tight result didn’t go our way, as Centrals ran out 11-point victors.
Congratulations to Nick Steele on his senior football return and immediate impact he had. I admire the work Steeley has done and his desire to continue working on his game and become a better footballer, he played his role exceptionally well on Saturday and was rewarded with 4 goals. Liam Delahunty, Mick Mattingly and Kobe Ryan were all solid contributors, whilst Hamish Ellem battled hard as our Ruck in the absence of Dylan Bramich.
Our Reserves Side have shown positive signs over the last few weeks in terms of our system and how we want our game to look, but like our senior group, have struggled to implement consistently over four-quarters.
Congratulations to Russell Godson and our U18s squad for your persistence and hard work and coming away with your first win of 2023. I see daily how hard Russell works with his coaching staff and our players and it was nice to come in to work on a Monday morning and seeing him up and about.
As a senior group we look forward to preparing for our games this week against the benchmark of the SANFL competition, Glenelg at Stratarama on Saturday.
League Coach – Adam Hartlett