We arrived at the Walter Galt Reserve for the game against Mordi Braeside with the ground bathed in bright sunshine and warmth – surely the last weather like that for a while! We had enjoyed the opportunity for a Sunday sleep-in given the unusual 10:45am start time.
The boys were looking sharp during the warm-up and are settling into the weekly rituals of game day. Our eager captains for the day were Will and Thomas who’s faces both lit up when they’re names were announced for the days honour. In each game so far, the boys who have led us as captains on game day have had fantastic individual games and today was no different. It’s rewarding to see the way the boys take on this opportunity to lead their teammates and how this translates to their performance on the day and confidence in the weeks ahead. They won the toss and chose to kick with the solid northerly breeze hoping to get off to a fast start in the first quarter.
Will was hard at it early with some great inside efforts and Thomas held strong with some great defence and marking when the Mordi boys put some pressure on. The ball spent a lot of time locked between the opposing players, with neither side able to get free to use the ball well. We couldn’t use the wind to our advantage the way we would have liked, but Liam H and Harrison K made some plays which Spencer and Toby tried to capitalise on, but the Mordi squad held firm and were able to rebound.
In the second we knew we needed to keep our defence tight with Mordi coming back with the breeze, but as per the first quarter, the play seemed to go against the breeze. Contests were locked down again, with each passage of attack being broken by the defences able to stop the incoming ball. Kieran continued to get himself to the ball in defence and applied some strong tackles which helped spill the ball for Harrison K and Liam M get into the forward line. We got the ball to our forward line quite a bit, but the Mordi defence was strong, however Liam H worked well and was able to find the goals for a score.
After the half-time break, the game started to open up allowing some clean possessions and ball handling. Elliot featured well in the forward line with multiple efforts from the inside 50s. It was pleasing to see some handball linkages being used by a few of the boys, which enhanced the flow of the game – something we want to do more of. Jock, Freddie and Charlie Q were involved in one that provided an opportunity for our forwards. Thomas continued his captain’s game with more strong efforts in the forward line. Charlie Q copped a hard knock but showed his resilience and continue to have a great game.
In the last quarter, Felix shone up forward getting involved in a number of contests. The team worked super hard to keep pushing the ball into our forward line, with Jock, Liam M and Kieran putting in multiple efforts to try to get to the goals. Liam M was able to capitalise and got a well-deserved goal. The team showed tough defence and great fight in a well fought and close game.