Thunder focused for premiership decider

Published on Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Author : Jacinta Frazzetto

Bendigo coach Cherie O’Neil believes her side is ready to go ahead of Sunday’s Northpark NFLW Division 1 grand final.

After winning the minor premiership of the Northpark NFLW Division 1 competition, Bendigo had been the in-form side for much of the 2017 season.

But as O’Neil says, “finals is different”.

After progressing straight through to the second semi final, Bendigo suffered an upset 11-point loss to Diamond Creek Women’s.

The Thunder bounced back with an impressive 19-point preliminary final win over the VU Western Spurs on the weekend to book their place next beside the Creekers in the Grand Final.

“We did a bit of soul-searching after the loss to Diamond Creek so we could come together again as a team,” O’Neill said.

“The girls were really focused on the weekend and they started playing for each other again which was good,” O’Neil said.

“After the win on Sunday, we were really happy and soaked in our win but on the flip side of that, the girls were quite focused and hungry for the next week.”

Having lost to Diamond Creek just two weeks ago, O’Neil is aware of the challenge ahead and is keeping her side in positive spirits ahead of the premiership decider.

“We’re not going to change a lot. We’ll just keep the girls focused and keep the lid on it. There is a little bit of a different vibe about the week but the girls are very focused which is really good to see,” she said.

“Our last game against Diamond Creek was definitely not our best game but I feel that if we take the same attitude we did on the weekend, then we’ll be giving them a run for their money,”

“All I can ask of the girls is to leave it all out there and we’ll be trying to turn the scoreboard around from our loss.”

The Northpark NFLW grand finals will be held at Preston City Oval on Sunday August 27.

The Division 1 game will be played from 1:30pm, following the Division 2 decider between VU Western Spurs and West Preston-Lakeside which commences at 11:40am.

A live stream of the Division 1 game will be published on the Northern Football League Facebook page.

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