Bombers focused on tough challenge

Georgia Nanscawen was a standout on Saturday. (Joe Mastroianni). 268247_01

Tara Murray

Essendon doesn’t have to look far for motivation in the Victorian Football League Women’s competition.

The Bombers, who sit on top of the ladder and have already secured a finals spot, play the other three teams in the top four the end the regular season.

Bombers coach Brendan Major said the playing group wanted to play their best football against the top sides in the competition.

“Because of the situation of preparing for an AFLW side, everyone is wanting to play well to earn a spot,’ he said.

“We play the top three sides in the next three weeks and have the ability to play against the best in the competition. They need no other motivation than that.

“We don’t change much. We’ll look to play our type of footy against good opposition.”

Major said with such a hard run home, they weren’t looking at a possible top two finish. He said they were just looking week to week.

The Bombers enter the last three rounds on the back of a win against Darebin Falcons.

Major said it wasn’t their best game, but they were able to adjust well to come away with the 9.10 (64)-1.1 (7) win.

“We had a few out with COVID-19 protocols,” he said.

“It was a match of two halves. We struggled to get our game going. It’s understanding we will get pressured and that we have to give the first option and it then snowballs from there.

“Everyone is trying to knock off a team that is doing well.”

Major said Joanne Doonan, Georgia Nanscawen, Alana Barba and Grace Dicker had strong games in an even team performance.

He said Barba was starting to find her feet after returning from playing in the AFLW with the Gold Coast Suns.

“She’s a really exciting player with good athleticism,” he said.

“She hasn’t played a lot of footy with only a couple of games at Gold Coast. She’s warming back into it.”

The Bombers are set to face Hawthorn on Sunday at Box Hill City Oval.

Major said that Jordan Zanchetta, Renee Tierney and Bella Clarke were set to miss again.

Meanwhile the men’s side lost to Hawthorn, 23.18 (156)-9.8 (62).