Picola United is not only hurtling towards back-to-back Picola District Football League north-west division senior flags, but will set out to achieve much more on Saturday.
The Blues have three sides (seniors, reserves and under-17s) in the big dance for the second season in a row, with both open-age teams tasting the ultimate success last year.
It has allowed Jon Varcoe to harness the dreams of not just 22 players in the lead up to the biggest day of the year, but much closer to 70.
‘‘It’s great, there’s a bit of excitement around and everyone’s up for the challenge,’’ he said.
‘‘We know it is going to be a tough game, but we always try to be confident in ourselves without going over the top.’’
Picola will take on Strathmerton again in the grand final at Blighty Recreation Reserve after defeating it comfortably last year (83 points) and just two weekends ago (49), but Varcoe knows that anything can happen on the final day of the season.
‘‘It doesn’t matter what happened last year or early this year, we definitely have a lot of respect for Strathmerton,’’ he said.
‘‘Everyone’s pretty calm because most of them have been there before, but the two teams have changed dramatically, it will be a different ground and different weather conditions, so it will be a different game.’’
The veteran was coy when asked about the make-up of his final team, but it would be tough to change a winning formula against the same opposition.
With only two losses in the club’s past 35 matches, Varcoe stressed the group mentality of his charges.
‘‘We really look for a team performance, it’s what we’ve been about across the journey, getting 22 contributors,’’ he said.
‘‘In saying that, we will look for our midfielders to win the ball first on Saturday.’’
Hayden Brown (17 goals), Ian Fry (18), Kian Wise (20), Dylan Cunningham (30), Scott Miles (32), Tom Byrnes (36), Adam Jorgensen (40) and Taylor Beard (44) have all averaged more than one major per game this season, meaning that if one is shut down against the Bulldogs, the others will certainly stand up.
Saturday’s Picola District Football League north-west grand final matches at Blighty
Seniors: Picola United v Strathmerton at 2pm.
Reserves: Picola United v Strathmerton at 12.30pm.
Under-17s: Jerilderie v Picola United at 10.35am.
Under-14s: Tocumwal v Deniliquin Rovers at 9.20am.