2019 will see Dees fulfil their destiny

October 28, 2018 by
Filed under: NSW Demons 

Season Summary – 2018

By Liam Chambers

What a year 2018 turned out to be! There were moments of brilliance and dominance as well as disappointment until finally the team showed their true potential. When it again looked like the lads were off on an early holiday to the snow, they confounded the critics and reached their first finals in twelve years. After the initial shock of losing so badly to the West Coast Eagles in the preliminary final, Melbourne can now take stock. The Dees can look back on the 2018 season with justifiable pride.

There were some momentous games and a few we’d rather forget but Melbourne has continued it’s upward trajectory from the 2013 season when we only won two matches. After the disappointment of missing out on playing finals by the smallest percentage in AFL history in 2017, it looked like the Dees would fall agonisingly short again this year. We lost the game we had to win against the Sydney Swans in Round 21 but then we had a dream run of four games when it looked like we could go all the way.

The Preliminary Final loss to the Eagles in Perth will be debated for years to come but Melbourne will have learned a valuable lesson from the experience. I’m sure the players and coaching staff will watch that game many times during the pre-season preparation. It won’t be easy viewing but it will be essential viewing. I haven’t been able to watch it again yet. It will make the players mentally tougher and more determined in 2019.

With so much talent in the Dee’s side, they will be an exciting team to watch. When Max Gawn received the Keith Truscott Memorial Trophy he made an acceptance speech that was inspirational and insightful. He spoke about how well the team was working with the various coaching staff, modifying the style of play to improve their game and realise the team’s potential. He was humble and self effacing at times but he left no one in any doubt that Melbourne will be taking it up a notch next year. A player like Gawny can change the way a side thinks about itself when they’re behind in a game. Of course there is much more to the Dees but the players look up to him both literally and figuratively.

This team is getting the basics right and that’s essential. You can have a team of the most talented individuals in the AFL but everyone has to use that talent as part of a team. Natural flair is enhanced with practice and doing the basic stuff over and over until it’s like breathing. I watched an interview with Shane Warne recently. He was promoting his autobiography “No Spin” (great title). He spoke about how he would practice the same bowling techniques for hours at a time. He would set himself a target and wouldn’t stop until he achieved it three times. Sometimes it took 20 minutes; sometimes 3 hours. I think it was Gary Player who said “the harder I practice, the luckier I get”. Maybe Melbourne will be the luckiest team in the AFL next year.

2019 – AFLM

Of course we have a wealth of talent in our Casey Demons side as well. They have been superb this year and only just failed to secure their own Grand Final win. The Melbourne players that spend a few weeks in the Casey side often play in different positions and come back with a new perspective on the game. Casey Demons will continue to be hugely important to the Dees in 2019.

New players joining Melbourne will be Gold Coast defenders Steven May and Kade Kolodjashnij. North Melbourne ruckman Braydon Preuss will also join the Dees. Unfortunately, we are losing Jesse Hogan and Dean Kent and midfielder Dom Tyson.

2019 – AFLW

Well, it’s less than five months until the start of the new AFL season and before that we will have the AFLW games to look forward to. Unfortunately, while there will be two extra teams competing in 2019, there will still be the same number of games played. One of the reasons given is that they the AFL is building it up from the grass roots level and it will take time to establish the new competition. Also, traditional AFL fans will be slow to embrace a separate women’s game running alongside the men’s league. The potential danger though will be the best women athletes being attracted to other codes and the AFLW struggling to gain a foothold in the coming years. Let’s hope the issues can be sorted out quickly so the game can reach it’s full potential.

Go the Mighty Dees!


Comments are closed.

Click here join NSW Demons now.

follow us on twitter Follow us on twitter

join our facebook group Join our facebook group

Sign up to our newsletter: