After enduring a painful loss last week to Olinda where questions may have been raised around their level of motivation and a desire to win, Wandin came out firing over the weekend, securing their first win of the season against Doveton by 25 points.
The two sides were fighting out a close match at the recently refurbished facility at Wandin North Recreation Reserve, with the margin just two points in Wandin’s favour at three quarter time, before the Bulldogs put the foot down to run away with the win.
The win has instilled confidence back into the boys from Wandin, following a few close losses through the early part of the season and, that gloomy afternoon where they were unable to get going against Olinda.
Senior coach Nick Adam was pleased with the efforts of his side, following a week where the club went through a reality check.
“It was a great reward for effort,” Adam said.
“We were disappointed with the effort and attitude we produced the week before against Olinda, and it had been a big week at the footy club starting from the Sunday on.
“It was really cool to see members, supporters and volunteers with smiles on their faces at the end of the game, and of course to sing the song again.”
Following the 109-point loss to Olinda the week before, the club went through a review process where group discussions took place around how they could control the preceding seven days and what could be done to turn things around.
Topics of conversation included preparation, pre-game work and focus that all led back to an understanding between the club and playing group that they did not want the game against Olinda to define who they were.
Their approach between the two games changed completely in order to turn around their overall work ethic and attitude.
When the opportunity came last Saturday to prove to the wider football community they were not going to let one bad game define them, they took it with both hands and secured a well-deserved win.
“It was a relief after the week we had and we put so much effort into turning it around,” Adam explained.
“I think the win has boosted their confidence.
“But despite our effort against Olinda and in the final quarter against Cranbourne, I feel like we have been really competitive in the first four weeks of the season, and we haven’t been able to get it across the line.”
With their first win of 2021 in the bank, the Bulldogs will now tackle the rest of the season with the same aims they had at the beginning of the season, that being to continue developing young talent who are committed to the long-term vision that is seen at Wandin.
“Our aims for the rest of the season haven’t changed from the beginning of the year,” Adam said.
“We started the year with an expectation to be winning games of football so while at this point, the likelihood of playing finals is slim, we put a real focus into developing young Wandin talent this year and we have been able to get games into guys throughout the season.
“We want to win games on the way out too while we’re at it as we keep building towards the future.”