Teams gird up for grand finals
FOR Southside United star Andrea Farrow it has been a long time between drinks.
Farrow was a raw 15-year-old playing her first years of A-grade hockey with the club when she played in her last grand final. That was 11 years ago and today she will be leading her players on to the turf at Kalka Shades for the showdown with Wanderers.
While Wanderers will go into the match as favourite, Farrow is unworried by that status as she sees the Southside squad as having what it takes to get a victory.
“The girls really want it,” she said.
The Southside captain believes the players will take that enthusiasm into the match and with it being a very young team, should have the legs to give Wanderers a few problems.
However, Farrow is aware that a team like Wanderers will not be beaten by enthusiasm alone and is confident Southside can match their opponents all around the park.
“We are strong all over the pitch and in the box,” she said.
Keeping goal is Emily Hunt who has received rave reviews throughout the year. She said preparations for the game had gone well and the players were looking forward to their big day.
“I'm a little nervous,” she admitted.
Today the team will have a little get-together before setting off for their grand final.
Wanderers will go into the match confident having already won the minor premiership and beaten Southside in the major semi-final.
However, that was a close call and Southside will have its full squad available this time around.
Captain of Wanderers is Jodie Dwyer and much will depend on how she can take control of the game.
Like the women's A1 final, the main match for the men is between the same two clubs.
For Southside United captain/ coach Robbie Peterson, the hard work has been done and now it is time for his players to enjoy the occasion.
He even plays down talk of payback for last year's loss to Wanderers, saying all that is in the past.
“We are not worried about what Wanderers do, we know they are a good team, it's about what we do,” he said.
Peterson is already looking ahead as he sees Southside United as a club on the rebuild after a few poor seasons.
Now with teams in both A-grade finals and also one in the Men's A2 final he sees the club as having a healthy future.
“Wanderers are, and have been for the past five years, the benchmark.
“We'll go out and do our best,” he said.
Wanderers captain Andrew Landsberg is no stranger to the big occasion having played A-grade for most of his 15 years with the club and captained the team in the past four finals, all winning occasions.
He said the team had not done anything special to prepare for the game.
“We had a good hit out on Tuesday and a good run on Thursday,” he said.
Landsberg doesn't think his players will be affected by playing grand final hockey.
“We have a couple of young players up front,” he said.
However, the remainder of the squad are seasoned performers and that will be the strength of this Wanderers team.
The reigning champion will miss Michael Boyd, whom Landsberg believes to be a key player for Wanderers.Saturday's grand final fixtures 10.00am- A3 Women, PA Brothers Red v PA Brothers Gold 11.35am- A3 Men, PA Brothers Red v Wanderers 1.10pm- A2 Women, Wanderers v PA Brothers 2.45pm- A2 Men, PA Brothers v Southside United 4.20pm- A1 Women, Wanderers v Southside United 6.00pm- A1 Men, Wanderers v Southside United. We'll go out and do our best