2011 - Under 10's Grand Slam
GRANDFINAL DAY, 10th September 2011. It has been a big year for the mighty Burra Under 10’s, undefeated going into the grandfinal and up against Douglas Park, a team that has push them all year. Coming off a 1-0 win in the semifinals, against Douglas Park, expectations are high, but the players seem to have been unaffected by the build up. Not so can be said for the parents, the nervous energy is quite visible.
It is a cool morning, with a breeze blowing to the eastern goals, could be an idea to use that breeze in the first half and get a couple of goals up. Coach & Manager instruct grandfinal captain Anthony Panetta to choose that way if he wins the toss is this the first crucial decision of the day?
War paint on, a photo or two, a bit more pacing by coaching staff & parents, the crowd is building, please, please, please soccer gods, they have been the best side all year!
On they go, Anthony Panetta, Connor Lambden, Goran Pupalevski, Harry Reid, Macie Carlile, Tom Meredith, Blake Harris, Harry Feutrill, Corey Burton, Zac Zafosnik, Callum Whitelaw, Jackson Walker, Jason Watt. Burra wins the toss and go with the breeze, is that the right decision?
Kick off, the crowd is in a frenzy, coaching staff are screaming and the action on the pitch is frantic. Douglas Park hold the upper hand early, but the defence lead by Tom, Corey, Goran, Jackson and of course the effervescent Callum in goals, hold fast! Callum is called on to make a couple of early saves. It is soon evident though, the midfield of Zac, Blake, Anthony and Jason that Burra are starting to get the upper hand. Harry F gets a great pass from the midfield and then a great shot on goal which produces the best from the DP keeper - oh so close.
Macie & Harry F up front are creating opportunities. Macie puts a cross ball through on the 15 minute mark, there is a scramble, body’s everywhere and GOAL, not the best goal of the year, but in amongst the mayhem Harry F gets a toe to the ball and it rolls over the line 1-0 Burra.
This spurs Douglas Park into action and Burra are called on across the park to work hard. Zac & Anthony are working overtime in midfield and Blake has been forced to defend more than normal, dulling Burra’s attack down the right a little. Once again Callum is called upon to save. Harry R & Connor are into the action and as defenders they find themselves in amongst it and are up to the challenge. With half time approaching we need to get another goal, that breeze decision!! It’s like a scene straight from the Flying High movie what a day to give up whatever! Halftime, Burra leads 1-0. Drinks, magic oranges, words of encouragement, more prayers.
A few tweaks of the team at halftime, we are back on, the breeze is a little stronger now, Mmmm! The message is all positive and don’t give the opposition any time on the ball, interesting to note the DP coach is telling his team the same!
Once again Douglas Park are taking it to us. Jason, Jackson, Tom, Harry R, Connor, Corey, Zac and Anthony are all working very hard in the midfield and defence. On the 7 minute mark of the ½ with Douglas Park deep in attack, Zac clears the ball to a clear Harry F who runs open over the halfway line well into the attacking zone, to the top of the 18yard box, GOAL! OH NO A FLAG! Offside your honour, interesting to note the person in the offside position did not get involved in the play, a 50/50 call.
The game is in the balance, Blake is starting to have a little more freedom on the right, but the wind is playing havoc. Time and again Burra repel Douglas Park and midway through the half Zac creates and takes a great an opportunity in front of goal and slots home a great strike, GOAL!! Burra lead 2-0. S
omebody asks how long to go, a feeling of despair creeps over the Manager, nobody knows!!! A few minutes later, Douglas Park send in a great cross, into the box, a hand, a whistle, a PENALTY who owns that hand, it will be chopped off after the game. Callum steels himself in front of goal and makes himself as big as possible, but the shot is too good, 2-1 to Burra how long to go?
Soon after Douglas Park make another break but Macie & Jackson get back in defence to support their team mates at the back, Callum also has more work to do and does it tremendously. Burra in turn also have some attacking opportunities, Blake, Anthony & Corey getting involved in a few passing movements that have the very large crowd clapping. Time, the time. The defence has been fantastic, the midfield fantastic, the forwards fantastic blow the whistle Ref. We are not done with the drama yet, Zac takes the ball from deep in defence and weaves his way through to well into the attacking zone, shoots SAVED.
The keeper them roosts a kick down field, Douglas Park in possession in their attacking half. Everybody is screaming for Burra to get back and they do. A brick wall is presented to Douglas Park’s attack, Tom to Blake to Connor, is that a whistle? IT IS! Burra U10/Div4 are Premiership winners, Grandfinal winners and out and out Champions. They all know they have achieved something great and give each other a winning hug and pat on the back.
They receive a rousing reception from the large crowd for their win, their smiles say it all. The awards ceremony is next and not only does the team receive premiership medallions, but Zac is voted a deserved winner of, the player of the grandfinal, that just tops off a great year.
The Coach and Management of the Mighty U10’s would like to thank all that have been involved in the team, but a big thanks to the players themselves, effort guys.