Out for a cupset: Bargara return to senior football
FOOTBALL: Bargara coach Kyle Townsend knows tomorrow night's contest is just the first chapter in bringing the club back to the top in senior football.
But he's hoping an upset or two can happen along the way.
Bargara plays its first match in senior competition in 19 months, taking on The Waves in the first round of the Triple M Division 1 Cup, formerly known as the NewsMail Cup.
The last time the club was in the competition it knocked off The Waves in the semis on their way to a final loss against Brothers Aston Villa.
But the club knows tomorrow is different.
The Waves have improved since that clash and last year made the final in the Cup, losing to Bingera.
Bargara is the underdogs.
"It's been unbelievable to be back, lots of coaches support as well," Townsend said.
"There's lots of excitement, especially after pre-season."
Bargara hasn't won a match in pre-season so far, losing to a Gladstone outfit 5-0 and a Sunbury side 2-0.
Townsend knows it won't be easy at the start but the transition to seniors needed to happen.
"We have one of the biggest junior bases, the focus will be to promote a lot of junior talent," he said.
"We'll have a lot of 16, 17 and 18-year-olds ready to play."
He added there would be experienced players, who didn't play in pre-season, ready to make sure the side was competitive.
"We've got a really experienced spine, ready to help the young players get into senior football," he said.
"We want to be doing all the things right, including passing and moving the ball.
"The aim is to learn as we progress."
Townsend said the task would be tough against The Waves.
"John (Brillante their coach) brings out the best in the team," he said.
"They are very competitive so hopefully we can wear them down.
"We'd like to win but if it is a blowout then it isn't the end of the world. It is all about the experience."
Brillante admits he doesn't know much about Bargara heading into the clash.
But he knows his side will need to attack early to stay on top throughout.
"I think so, we need to come out and not give them any time on the ball. We need to score early and shut the game down and end it early. That will be the plan," he said.
The Waves will field a similar squad to the one that almost won the cup last year, but lost in a penalty shootout to Bingera.
Brillante said the focus was simple for the team.
"We've still got a young squad, still learning to be competitive," he said.
"We need to maintain intensity and make sure we don't come up short."
Play starts at 6pm tomorrow at Martens Oval before Bingera faces UPE (below).