Congratulations on the win, what did you make of the match?
Gold Coast, as we know, they play a very hard brand of footy. Before today I think they we’re the number one contested ball team, number two ground ball team and high up in the tackles, so we know that they were going to make it hard and they made it very hard for us early. I thought our backs were great all day, our mids really were good for three and a half quarters and our forwards were disappointing for the first half but once they came to the party, things started to happen.
Gold Coast only had six inside 50’s after quarter time, it must’ve been unreal how the girls were able to take control of the game after that?
Absolutely, the mids were really good all day in doing that. There was a tag on Bowers, so it meant that others had to step up, I thought Hayley Miller’s second half was just outstanding. We still had good coverage from the wings all day and I thought we controlled it.
What did you make of Roxy Roux’s goal?
They shoot from there every night on the last night of training and they have coffee bets on it with the coach Amy Lavell, so she might be up for a whole coffee machine after that one. When she had it we actually said this is the coffee shot so we gave her a chance and it went through. She’s a pretty special talent Roxy, I was wrapped with her endeavour today, the way she rucked when she was in the ruck and her forward pressure, it was really amazing.
That’s her first goal of the year as well?
Yes, and it’s not necessarily about goals for her. We scored a goal to that end and it was her pressure from the kick in that resulted in it, so we love all that stuff. It was unlucky that ball was touched as well so she could’ve ended up with a couple, but I think it was definitely her best game of the year.
With the Suns physical approach, did you guys have to step up a little bit throughout the game to match them?
Not really, I thought our pressure was still there, but we didn’t quite handle it early. I thought they were first to the ball early which probably caught our girls a bit off guard. The six-day break is neither here nor there but we didn’t get back from Adelaide until Tuesday, so it was a funny week this week. We talked about starting fast but we didn’t and then just had to dig in and get going which we did. Gold Coast were physical but fair, it was just a really good contest in there early and we just didn’t get to the ball first rather than handle the pressure I thought.
Emma O’Driscoll, how’s she going?
She’s very popular with the group and her ability to play on all different types as well. She’s still new to the game, she was playing state netball three years ago and hadn’t touched a footy at that stage, so her development has been rapid. In that settled backline now, the other girls help her out a lot to let her use her athleticism, I think Laura Pugh’s been a major part in using her voice and directing. I’m really happy with the way the backline’s functioning at the moment.
It was a 49 point margin but Houghton and Duffy didn’t kick a goal, that must be pleasing?
Absolutely. Every last team meeting with the forwards we talk about ‘how many’ not ‘who’ and those two tend to hit the scoreboard a lot but Gabby O’Sullivan’s almost one of our most important forwards because she always works hard and today it was her turn for a lick of the ice cream with two goals, two (points) and 16 touches. Houghton and Duffy didn’t have big days but there were moments when they were definitely contributing and that’s what we need to be one of the top teams is having that spread, otherwise if we go out in a final and opposition sides know they can stop Houghton and Duffy then we could be in trouble but if they do, we’ve got more than enough who can step up. But the clash between Houghton and (Lauren) Ahrens and (Jade) Pregelj at times was really good, they’re two quality, tall defenders so it was good to watch that battle.
No I think we’re good. We had Phil Seth on limited minutes this week, she was coming back from a hamstring, so we nursed her through and she’ll be right to go fully next week and the rest seemed to get through fine so happy with that. Two girls missed out this week in Bianca Webb and Mikayla Hyde who have been playing well for us aswell, so we are in a good position as far as our depth goes at the moment and it keeps everybody honest that’s for sure.
Do you know if you’re staying in Perth next week?
We think so but it changes and we are prepared for whatever does happen. We are lead to believe we will be staying in Perth but that could change and we’ll be ready for that. I’m guessing the fixture might come out tomorrow, that’s when it came out last week, but we will just be pressing refresh like everyone else and looking forward to whatever does come next. The obvious one is probably Brisbane, they’re the interstate (non-Victorian) side we haven’t played and I think they’ve had three home games in a row so probably expecting them to travel here next week and at the moment they’re top of the ladder so really looking forward to that. To be honest we are probably hoping that is the match up that eventuates because we want to play as many good teams as possible.
When you’re winning each week how hard is it to work out what your weaknesses are?
We can still look at that first half and find out some things where we weren’t playing well. It’s great when you can get those learnings and still win, but particularly the second quarter, I think we looked at it and the ground balls inside 50 we’d had one and they’d had nine, so that was a real area where we needed to improve. And then we improved in the third quarter in that area and had six tackles in that area to their zero and that’s when the game turned when we started doing those things. So we can definitely look at that and then we can go back during the week and highlight where we didn’t do well and work on it because we have to keep getting better. In AFLW if you stay as good as you are, other sides are going to catch you real quick so we have to keep working and improving.