GOTAFE GVL Grand Final Day 2018

Pies sourcing extra heat

By Alex Mitchell

Kyabram and Euroa will resume their blooming reserves rivalry on Sunday with the ultimate prize on the line — a Goulburn Valley League premiership.

Fans will hope the sequel is as good as the original after the Bombers having knocked off the Magpies by a solitary point in last year’s decider.

Euroa will be out for redemption, for last year and this season’s qualifying final, where it conceded eight goals to two in the first term on its way to a 53-point loss.

The Magpies bounced back well with a 14-point win against Seymour, before qualifying for the grand final with a heart-stopping three-point win against Mansfield.

Magpies coach Scott Rowan hoped the Kyabram defeat was the loss it had to have.

‘‘We just know in that qualifying final we didn’t turn up to play,’’ he said.

‘‘It was probably a good lapse at a good time. That’s what will be different in our approach this weekend, we expect that intensity to be a lot higher.

‘‘They had far more intent attacking the ball, we sat back and waited for someone else to do it, where they were straight in there.’’

It was a stellar regular season that took the Magpies to the top of the ladder, with their 17-1 record including two wins against Kyabram.

A core of senior-experienced players, including James Ivill, Brad Gleeson, Zac Gleeson and Harrison Lane, will be decisive, as will senior games record-holder Craig Bamford should he return to the side after missing last Sunday’s preliminary final.

Another potential X-factor might be Kataha Siwee, with the international sensation taking an absolute screamer last weekend against a Mansfield opponent and having 19 goals in six games this season.

‘‘He’s great, he came over from Papua New Guinea a bit later than we would have liked, but he’s just an excitement machine,’’ Rowan said.

‘‘His skills are good, his pace is electric and as everyone saw on the weekend he’s got the ability to fly through the air.’’

For Kyabram, it will look to keep the club’s glorious period rolling and make it two premierships in a row.

Coach Mark Dillon said his side could not afford to get ahead of itself due to the comfortable finals win.

‘‘It’s a pretty good feeling, everyone is feeling good, but a bit nervous,’’ he said.

‘‘Going to a grand final you never know what could happen, things change pretty quickly and the tables could turn. We have to go in with the right mindset.’’

The Bombers went 16-2 in the regular season, but have peaked at the right time, particularly in a 78-14 dismantling of Mansfield to make the decider.

Dillon hoped his side’s brilliant defence could strike another blow in the growing rivalry between the sides.

‘‘There’s a rivalry between us I suppose, even though there’s a long distance between us, which is a strange,’’ he said.

‘‘There’s a good rivalry and the boys look forward to the challenge of playing Euroa. They beat us twice in the home-and-away season, but in that last final at Echuca we were up and about and they were a bit nervous, so hopefully they’re still like that.’’