THROWING down the challenge to improve has Kolora Noorat primed for its Warrnambool and District league senior football grand final against Nirranda.
First year Power coach Ben Walsh has challenged his players every week of the season regardless of the result, revealing his message had not wavered following their preliminary final victory last weekend.
“Probably the thing I remember saying a lot, even when we’ve had a really good win, is challenging the players to get better the next week,” he said.
“That’s when we’ve had some really tough wins against really good sides and maybe some big wins against some of the lower sides.
“But after the prelim I said the same thing that we’ve got to get better and that’s probably the way we’ve stayed focussed.
“The year on a whole, we’ve played some really good footy, we’ve blooded a lot of kids, our older guys have stepped up and had really good years and it’s been a really enjoyable place to be around.”
The Power and Blues are set to meet for the third time in a seven week period, with Walsh under no illusions as to the expected tenacity of the encounter.
“You know what you’re going to get when you play them and that’s a really fierce contest and that’s what it should be like, particularly in finals and a grand final,” he said.
“They’re really experienced in finals and we probably learnt a lot a couple of weeks ago around that contested stuff.
“When it got tight they were probably a little bit more willing, so that’s something we learnt from that.
“But we’re going to make sure we play our way and take the game on and play to our strengths while trying to limit theirs, which will be the aim for us.”
The win-loss ledger sits at 2-1 the way of Kolora Noorat but Walsh said “both sides will go in thinking they’re a really big chance”.
“I’m sure they’ll be going in confident but probably the pleasing thing for us from the prelim was we take a lot of confidence back from that,” he said.
“We weren’t at our best in the second semi and we probably had a few young guys questioning whether we were good enough.
“But we walk away from the prelim really confident in our ability and reminding ourselves what our best footy looks like.”
Walsh said there was plenty of internal and external motivation as well as a good mix of experience within the group as it aims to win the club’s fifth flag.
“I haven’t looked at the numbers but we’ve got guys like Ben Fraser, Jason Moloney and Scott Judd that have played in plenty of finals and won plenty of finals,” he said.
“But then probably those kids, they’re pretty free and just play and then we’ve got some guys in the middle that have had some challenges in the past.
“It’s a really good mix and everyone has their own internal motivation but we’ll just keep going back to that group motivation which is that community stuff.
“Guys that have won one want another one and guys that haven’t won one, we think it’s a good, exciting mix and we can’t wait for this Saturday.”