Sitting down and writing this has probably been the toughest thing I’ve ever had to do. Football is my passion and when you work so hard for something and fall over at the last hurdle it rips the heart right out of your chest. Don’t get me wrong im proud of our achievements and so should all involved be but just can someone please give me that day back!
Reflecting on the year after losing a Grand Final is not something I wanted to do and it’s taken me a whole month to be able to do so but I owe it to the players, board, supporters and the whole Lindisfarne community to remain strong and focused on the bigger picture and that is Season 2009.
In many ways last season was totally unexpected. When the coaching staff sat down during Pre Season and set our goals the only thing we were really focused on was enough improvement to play finals, so we set about making this happen. I guess it started with our recruiting, our focus was on players we needed to fit our style of play rather than just any available player. Our recruits included Justin Rainbird and Mark Cashion from New Norfolk, Justin O’Brien from Uni Mowbray, Brendan Johnson from North Hobart, Andrew Boucher from Hobart and of course Luke Goodsell returned to the club as an Assistant Coach.
Our Pre Season was massive to say the least, we worked extremely hard and got incredibly fit. Much of the credit for that goes to our Fitness Coach Dave Scott. Dave’s professionalism and knowledge was fantastic and he helped us instill that into the players both with there preparation and recovery and Dave should be proud of what he was able to do for us.
When Round 1 come along we knew we were prepared physically but for myself there was still a feeling of the unknown. I wasn’t sure what to expect, I knew I had a great list of players in great physical shape but could we put the score on the board, we all now know the answer to that and I guess the rest is history!
Our performances through the Home and Away season were unbelievable and sometimes left me forgetting I was actually coaching this group and I found myself just watching them play in awe of how good they were. They took all before them and made my job pretty easy, a few simple instructions, a simple game plan and away they went. We got through to the Second Semi undefeated and in pretty good form and the win in that game, for me, was our best without a doubt. Now, I won’t talk about what happened next because we all know but I just want to say despite what happened im a proud coach, not for myself but for the group of players that put themselves on the line for me and the club week in, week out.
So many people to thank, firstly and again to all the players for your efforts, be proud of what you achieved. To the Board for all your support, to the supporters for being there week in and week out, to our sponsors for your generosity and last but not least to my coaching staff. Justin Myers, Luke Goodsell, Kaine Menzie and Nathan Senior. You guys all did a brilliant job in your specific roles and I couldn’t have done it without your continued support, thanks guys.
In summary I just want to say, I’ll never forget season 2008, well apart from that one game!
Daniel "Willey" Willing