GDFL GRAND FINAL
Team-first ethos suits Barlow
REDEMPTION proved to be the theme for Jake Barlow, who stepped up to the Panther plate when it mattered most on Saturday.
Although he kicked the winning goal in his side’s second semi-final victory, the 22-year-old believed he had room for improvement for the grand final.
“I had a shocking last two games leading in, but when you’re playing at centre halfforward it depends on a lot of things so I was just trying to do my bit for the team,” Barlow said.
“Today I wanted to prove my point that even though I’m not the best centre half in the competition but I do play in the best forward line in the league and had to contribute.
“Joel Page and Nick Costello get the tough matchups every week, so I do what I can to assist them.”
Barlow appeared to be an early contender for the beston-ground medal through his ruthless endeavours, finding an early goal and assisting in others.
“The past fortnight we had been practising our goalkicking a great deal before training started each night,” he said. “Thankfully it paid off.” Switching down back for portions of the second half, his courageous flights supported his reputation as one of the league’s best utilities.
The interleague star finished with two late goals to cap his third senior premiership, polling three votes in the best-on-ground honours.
“You hear us say it every year, it’s not about the accolades it’s the team success so that’s where I have to put in,” Barlow added.
“I’ve been here three years now and all three coaches have done exceptionally and now we’re ready to prepare for another.” He