Dogs lose control
A five-minute brain fade was all that was needed to end Strathmerton’s season and send Blighty into ecstasy.
The Bulldogs were four goals in front with as many minutes left on the clock and in cruise control right up until the final minute.
Blighty managed to level the scores, and with seconds remaining Redeyes player Jed Brain took it upon himself to slam home the winning point.
Leading by 15 points at three-quarter time, the Bulldogs elected to sit back in an attempt to absorb the pressure of the final stanza.
But it wasn’t to be, and the Redeyes sealed a famous victory to claim a spot in Sunday’s Picola and District Football League preliminary final against Picola United.
The loss ended Strathmerton’s streak of five consecutive grand final appearances, before both sides of the PDFL were joined this year.
Max Canfield bagged five goals for the Bulldogs, with Tyron Hill and Zack Betson combining for another five.
The best player in Strathmerton’s final match of the year was a consistent performer in Lou Clarke.
Blighty coach Jack Tyndall said he could barely put into words — or even work out — how his side had pulled off the miraculous comeback.
‘‘It was unreal — we kicked about four goals in four minutes to get up,’’ he said.
‘‘It was a really, really special win, just unreal.
‘‘It’s a little bit weird, nothing really changed. It’s not that we went harder or anything, the ball just found itself in the right places for us.’’
Tyndall said Brain’s match-winning point was a special moment for the club and some redemption for the reigning Pearce medallist.
‘‘A few blokes really stood up, but Jed Brain, he missed a goal late last year for a spot in the grand final, so it was great he could kick the winning point for us this year,’’ he said.
Strathmerton coach Tim Bramich was unable to be reached for comment.
Big effort: Strathmerton’s Max Canfield shows his desperation to win the footy in his side’s last-minute loss to Blighty.