EAGLEHAWK coach Luke Monaghan is confident his side has its mojo back ahead of tomorrow’s qualifying final against Golden Square.
Through the middle of the season the Hawks were the hottest team in the competition.
However, a form slump between rounds 15 and 17 rocked the confidence of the Hawks and they had to beat South Bendigo in last week’s final round just to cement a finals berth.
The 17-goal thumping of South Bendigo has put a pep back in the Hawks’ step.
“The final quarter against Gisborne in round 17 sparked us,’’ Eaglehawk coach Luke Monaghan said.
“Even though we lost that game, the footy we played in that quarter was the style of footy we were playing in the middle of the year when we were up and about.
“That flowed on to last week and we’re confident that footy will continue this week.”
Eaglehawk’s cause hasn’t been helped by the absence of star defender Tim Hill (corked leg).
Monaghan said the inter-league full-back could have played.
“He may have got through, but he wouldn’t have been 100 per cent,’’ Monaghan said of Hill.
“He couldn’t train Tuesday and was limited last night.
“We made the call to give him another week.”
Square key forwards James Bristow and Matt O’Toole loom as major headaches for the Borough, particularly without Hill.
“Our backline has been one of our strengths all year,’’ Monaghan said.
“Button missed five or six games, Richards missed seven, but we’ve always managed to cover the players who aren’t there.
“Brenton Conforti and Tyler Miles have stepped up and they’ll have to do it again on Sunday.”
Just four weeks ago, Golden Square handed Eaglehawk a 73-point hiding.
Square coach Rick Ladson said he won’t be taking much of that game into tomorrow’s clash.
“That win we had a few weeks ago really doesn’t mean much now,’’ Ladson said.
“Finals footy is a new season. We’ve got the double chance and we want to make the most of it, starting on Sunday.
“We’re very lucky that we’ve got a lot of players who have finals experience.
“That old saying “finals footy is different” is true. Everything goes up a level and those experienced players we’ve got will help settle our younger players.”
The Bulldogs are riding a four-game winning streak.
“This is what we’ve been waiting for all year. Nice day, big ground and playing against quality opposition. We can’t wait to get out there,” Ladson said.