Townsville Bulletin

‘This will sting for a little bit’: Dogs to lick their wounds


WESTERN Bulldogs skipper Marcus Bontempell­i says it will take the efforts of many to ensure that the squad moves on from Saturday night’s disappoint­ing grand final loss to Melbourne.

“The endeavour has to be there now to bounce back, lick our wounds,” Bontempell­i said after the 74-point loss.

“This will sting for a little bit, and we’ll try to bounce back. “That’s the key thing – walk away thinking we can get back here and change the storyline. “We’re a resilient group.

“We have to spread the load. “It’s not purely up to me, to set the tone, set the direction.

“I feel we’re in a good direction with the squad we’ve got to continue to challenge and be back here.”

Bontempell­i acknowledg­ed the strength in Melbourne’s performanc­e across the park and conceded that the Demons had “probably been the best team all season”.

He said that defending against them is always tough because they are so versatile and can test teams in many different ways.

After leading by 19 points in third term, the Dogs were blown off Optus Stadium.

The Demons kicked 16 of the last 17 goals of the game to win in a cakewalk 21.14 (140) to 10.6 (66). The champion Dog said the way the grand final panned out was a tough one to swallow for his side.

“When you consider how much in the game we were and how we put ourselves in a pretty strong position and thought we had a pretty good handle on the game,” he said.

“Ultimately, having the game play out that way, it does hurt you the most.

“It’s not a true reflection of us and our football and what we like to represent.

“There is an upside.

“A lot of our young players played well through most of the finals really, to get us to this point.

“It’s difficult to make a grand final and that’s a milestone in itself.

“The endeavour has to be there now to bounce back, lick our wounds.”

 ?? ?? Marcus Bontempell­i
Marcus Bontempell­i

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia