Bulldogs hold no fears over Roos or the venue in decider
AUSSIE RULES: The Brothers Bulldogs are quite happy to put in the extra six miles needed to win their first premiership in seven years.
The Bundy side will travel to Gympie today to take on the Maroochydore Roos in this year's QFA Wide Bay Sunshine Coast league grand final.
In the first season of the competition, AFL Queensland moved the game to Six Mile Oval a neutral venue - so both teams had the same travel time.
But Bulldogs coach Jason Baulch sees the move as a major advantage for his side as conditions and the ground are expected to suit their style of play.
"I'm actually glad the game is at Gympie for us,” he said.
"It's likely to be inland and sheltered from the wind and weather.”
Baulch said that was important against the well-structured Roos side.
"They've got a zone press they push forwards with,” he said.
"The worse the day is, the wind and the rain, the more it favours them.
"We're a skilful side and if we get the ball in good conditions, we can cut them up.”
The ground will also help with the sides run around the oval.
"It's the type of ground that is wide open,” Baulch said.
"That really suits us.
"Our game relies on pinpoint accuracy with the kick, when we don't get the time or the conditions are bad, it can be a struggle for us.”
But Baulch is wary of the minor premiers.
The side defeated a gallant Hervey Bay last week and came home with plenty of run two weeks ago when the Bulldogs won by 11 points.
The Bulldogs might have been victorious but six final term goals to the Roos sent a message to the team.
"We need to get a good start. I went and watched on the weekend against Hervey Bay,” he said.
"It scares you to think if you are level with them at any stage they have plenty left in the tank.
"If you can win the clearance it makes it harder for them to attack.”
Brothers had already suffered that fate earlier this season when Maroochydore defeated the side in Bundaberg after a dominant third term.
Baulch said the focus has been on getting everything right in the lead-up to make sure the side hits the ground running right from the opening bounce of the contest.
"It's more about the process more than the outcome,” he said.
"Having the week off it has given us an opportunity to get one or two players back.
"We've got nobody sore, our only excuse can be effort and our mental base.”
Regardless of the result, Baulch said he wouldn't have done much different to get the club to where they are.
He said he was proud of where the club has gone this year.
"They are a good bunch of blokes,” he said.
"We haven't picked up new blokes, it is essentially the same personal and we've got some good kids coming up.
"They say you've got to lose one (grand final) to win one but I hope that doesn't happen this weekend.”
In team news, Dylan Keam comes into the team to replace Lachlan Dempsey in the starting 22.
The grand final starts at 2pm tomorrow.