On Sunday 21st August, the Division 3 Central Grand Final was played between the two top teams throughout the year. The Bond Uni Bullsharks, the minor premiers, met the Jimboomba Redbacks (the reigning Premiers) for the fifth time this year. With the ledger all square at 2-2, this shaped up to be a blockbuster.
By Doug Prior
The weather was to be a major influence with a strong wind, worth 5-6 goals, blowing directly up the ground from the south.
The Redbacks went with the wind in the first quarter and put on 5 majors to the Bullsharks solitary goal. Both teams went hard at the footy knowing what was at stake. Considering the wind and the threatening showers, both teams displayed good skills and tons of commitment.
The second quarter started where the first left off, with Bond confident they could erase the deficit. The Redbacks had other ideas and consequently their attack on the footy was ferocious. Bond kicked truly to close the gap, however hard running spurred Jimboomba to kick 3 majors for the term. Bond added another to end the term slightly further behind.
The third term saw both teams continue their first half attack on the footy. Solid defence from the Redbacks restricted the Bullsharks to just 2 goals for the term, whilst they peppered the big sticks adding 5 majors and just as many behinds with the still strong wind. Both teams were tiring markedly having chased and harassed each other all over the park. The final term would be a nail-biter.
When the siren sounded to start the last quarter, Bond knew they still had a chance. The wind was at their backs and a Premiership Flag was on the line. The Redbacks too, knew what was at stake, having played in the previous 2 Grand Finals for one win and one loss. Bond started off well with a major within the first couple of minutes. Jimboomba regrouped to steady and control a lot of the play, soaking up valuable time. Bond kicked truly twice more to narrow the margin whilst the Redbacks were yet to score. More time without the Bullsharks adding to their tally aided the Redbacks and steeled their determination to finish strongly. Two more majors saw the Redbacks supporters looking at the clock, wondering.
Then the siren sounded. Scenes of jubilation erupted for the Redbacks players and supporters as they won back-to-back flags. The first time in the club’s short history.