Strathfieldsaye and Sandhurst do battle during their round 12 clash, won by the Storm by five points. Picture: BILL CONROY
AFL Central Victoria regional manager Paul Hamilton is hoping the momentum from grand finals across the region will carry into this weekend’s BFNL premiership decider at the QEO.
The Loddon Valley, Heathcote District and North Central leagues have all set record gate takings with massive grand final crowds over the past three weeks.
Hamilton said even the Bendigo Junior Football League had enjoyed a record crowd at its grand final day earlier this month
“That tells us how much the community are getting out and supporting football and netball across the region,” he sad.
“Of course we have the big one the QEO this weekend, so we’re hoping for another huge crowd.
“I think with the Bendigo league grand final, it’s not just football and netball, it’s one of the big events on the community calendar.
“From that point of view we’d be expecting a big crowd.”
The grand final day schedule includes three football and five netball games, with the first games to kick-off at 9am.
Strathfieldsaye and Sandhurst will renew their 2014 grand final rivalry in the senior football final, starting at 2.20pm.
After finishing the season undefeated and easily accounting for Golden Square in their sole finals match a fortnight ago, Hamilton said Strathfieldsaye deserved to start the grand final as premiership favourites.
“But I have to say I am really impressed with the way Sandhurst is coming home, the way they played on the weekend was brilliant,” he said.
“They have got some players, like a guy like Tim Martin, the Michelsen Medal winners from the previous two years, he’s been out injured most of the year, but has just got himself back and running.
“He’s got five or six games under the belt and is playing great footy.
“Sandhurst are really coming good at the right time. Strahfieldsaye deserves to be favourites, being undefeated tells the story.
“I’d expect a really great game.”
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