STRATHFIELDSAYE coach Graham Gamble says his side goes into Sunday’s inaugural Central Victorian Football League Women’s grand final with the belief it can conjure what would be a massive upset.
The Storm will meet the Bendigo Thunder in the grand final at Weeroona Oval from 10am.
The Thunder will go into the game as the overwhelming favourites given not only are they unbeaten, but no opponent has yet got within 10 goals of them this year.
“The Thunder have obviously been the benchmark all year, but the two times we’ve played them we’ve been quite undermanned to the point where we’ve had to borrow players from them to field 18,” Gamble said on Friday.
“The development of our team has grown rapidly as the season has gone on, particularly over the past four weeks, and we’re playing the best we have all year by being able to secure players in their positions.
“I think we’re a good defensive side and with some players in our forward line who haven’t played against the Thunder before, I definitely think we’re in with a show.
“There’s certainly an expectation from most of the general footy community that the Thunder will win the game, but if you talk to my girls, they genuinely have the belief that they can do it, and so do I.”
Strathfieldsaye has already had one win this week, with the Storm’s Rhian Moresi taking out the league’s best and fairest award in her first season of football.
Meanwhile, Thunder coach Terry Burt says his side is ready to again embrace the challenge of being the hunted as it has been all season.
“There’s a lot of pressure on our girls going in undefeated and we know anything can happen on game day,” Burt said.
“We’ve got a fantastic group of girls led by Molly Metcalf as captain; Ebony Whiley at full-forward is the competition’s leading goalkicker with 27 and across the whole group there is a lot of talent.”
The Thunder’s depth of talent was evident when it had 12 players in the CVFLW inter-league team that defeated Northern Country last month.
BENDIGO THUNDER v. STRATHFIELDSAYE
B: S. Martion, B. Keene, C. West
HB: R. Daley
C: B. Jacobs, C. McRae, B. Marshall
HF: B. Cappy, M. Metcalf, I. Kendal
F: J. Sawers, E. Whiley, S. Faulkner
R: C. Vella, K. Hare, L. Campbell
Int: M. Holman, J. Morrissey , S. Moerke, E. Mitchell, R. Campbell, T. Bradley, A. Rowland
In: E. Mitchell, B. Keene, C. Vella, B. Jacobs, T. Bellesini, T. Bradley, K. Hare
Out: N. Hall, G. Gibbons, T. Cannan, S. O'Brien, M. Pettersen, K. Donovan, B. Evans
B: B. Cola, B. Lesser, H. Goss
HB: A. Gamble
C: L. Brown, J. Morrison, S. Sawyer
HF: A. Hibberson , C. Hains, L. Fraser
F: B. Harrop, T. Pratt, L. Edwards
R: J. Jackson, R. Moresi, C. Eaton
Int: C. Dunn, C. Cranch, H. Catlow, C. Mawby, J. Fothergill
In: J. Fothergill
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