I WAS WRONG: BOURKE

DISCIPLINED: Golden Square defender Matt Tyrrell punches the ball in Saturday night's elimination final win over Eaglehawk at the QEO. Picture: LIZ FLEMING

DISCIPLINED: Golden Square defender Matt Tyrrell punches the ball in Saturday night's elimination final win over Eaglehawk at the QEO. Picture: LIZ FLEMING

LW: Bourkey, I've just looked back at a text message you sent me at about 6.15pm on Saturday night.

It read: "Everything Hawks touch turns to gold. Square wasting chances. Game over - Hawks win."

Granted at that stage of the elimination final it was Eaglehawk leading Golden Square six goals to nil, but fair to say you went a bit early on writing the Bulldogs off.

Didn't you learn your lesson from last year when the Bulldogs were under pressure throughout all three of their finals, and won them all, that come this time of the year they are never out of a contest, no matter how grim the situation may be looking.

Saturday night's gutsy 25-point victory over Eaglehawk is now 14 finals wins in a row for Golden Square and the dream of a record-equalling sixth premiership in a row remains alive.

AB: Yes, I was wrong.

In my defence, the first nine words in the text message were right. Eaglehawk was outstanding early - they were playing footy that would have carved up any team in the competition.

No disrespect to Eaglehawk here, but I'm glad I was wrong.

Because if the text had been right we wouldn't have seen Corey Jones turn the game on its head.

​The Eaglehawk coaching staff and defence will have nightmares over what Jones did to the Hawks this year.

He turned the game in the second quarter on Saturday night and the young Bulldogs' followed his lead.

LW: Next stop for Golden Square is a first semi-final with Gisborne next Sunday arvo as the two Bulldogs' rivals reacquaint themselves in September again like they have so often in the past.

Gisborne served it right up to Sandhurst for three quarters in Sunday's qualifying final, but the Dragons were able to stamp their authority in the final term and run away with a 42-point win.

Dragons midfielder Lee Coghlan revived memories of his 2009 Michelsen Medal-winning season with a superb game to take best on ground honours.

AB: The Dragons weren't impressive for the first three quarters, but you have to give Gisborne plenty of credit for that.

If Sandhurst can reproduce the free-flowing footy it played in the final quarter against Gisborne in the second semi-final clash with Strathfieldsaye, then the Dragons are a real chance.

Right now, I like the Storm.

Westy, you made the trip to Elmore on Saturday for the HDFL preliminary final.

Is LBU any chance of knocking off North Bendigo in the grand final next Saturday?

LW: The Cats are just like Golden Square - you never discount them at this time of the year.

Their big-game finals experience was telling early in Saturday's preliminary final against Leitchville when they kicked away to a 45-point lead at half-time.

And later in the game when the Bombers made a charge and got back within 15 points in the last quarter, their cool heads under pressure to slow the game down and maintain possession was also pivotal.

It will be injury-watch on the Cats this week, though, with both coach Adrian Dohnt (shoulder) and star recruit Jonathan Hay (hamstring), who took the game apart early, coming off during the second term and not returning.

On the other hand, North Bendigo looks cherry ripe to finally capture that first flag since 1977 and that's who I'll be tipping.


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