Grand final tally grows for Labrador coach

Labrador coach, Steve Daniel, continues a strong record in this weekend’s QAFL grand final.

Daniel has taken teams ranging from Victoria to Cairns to grand finals with this weekend’s QAFL game, to be his 11th grand final as a coach.

The Tigers mentor said there wasn’t a big secret to his successful run,

“I don’t know, just a bit of luck,” he said.

“The Gods just seem to look down on me.”

His rap sheet is pretty intimidating over the years, with two grand finals at Mt Waverley, two at Surrey Park, three in a row at Seymour, one at Tatura and two at South Cairns.

He has been on both sides of the ledger that this weekend’s grand final sides find themselves on, with an undefeated side in the grand final.

“We were undefeated at South Cairns and lost the grand final and then in the Goulburn Valley Football League Seymour and played Euroa beat them in the grand final.”

Daniel lead the Queensland Country team, a team that included Morningside players, Tyson Upton and Nick Tomlinson, to its first championship win, a run that involved their first win over Victoria.

While he has tasted the big time, having assisted at Carlton under Denis Pagan, Daniel said it was success that he achieved at club level and as Queensland Country coach that was closest to his heart.

“We put that up there as a challenge and it had never been done.”

“You’re back in the grassroots football community (in those games).”

“When I first got appointed (as Queensland Country coach), I set myself a real challenge to be successful,” he said.

“To have guys Like Brian Douge and Tiger McCormack to see how much it meant to them after winning that carnival.”

“It just brings so much joy to people‘s faces.

Daniel has been on both sides of the coin in grand finals and knows all too well the emotional portion of footy.

“I’ve seen it bring grown men to their knees in tears.

“I’ve never seen a game that just brings grown men to their knees and all they’re doing is chasing a little, red leather thing around.”

Daniel’s experience means he is well aware of the challenge facing his team as they prepare to take on the Panthers.

“They’re a fantastic club, they have two teams in the grand final and (between them), they’ve only lost two games for the whole  year,” he said.

“They’ve got a great culture at that club.

“We’re trying to model ourselves on that.”

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