By Andrew Wiles – @andrewjwiles
2014 season wrap
Even though they fell agonizingly short of the ultimate success, 2014 must be seen as a successful year for the Zillmere Eagles. They finished the home and away season in second with 12 wins and two losses. After a first final loss to Coorparoo, they faced off against Yeronga in a preliminary final. A dominant performance saw the Eagles grand final bound, where they would once again face Coorparoo. Unfortunately, it wasn’t to be for Zillmere, who ended up going down by 33 points on the day. Overall, the season must be seen as a positive.
Former Zillmere senior player Rosie Pyke, who staggeringly debuted in the seniors at just 15 years old, will return to the Eagles in 2015. Now 19, Pyke will play a pivotal role down back, and will hit the contest extremely hard. Kylie Lawrence has moved over from the East Fremantle Football Club in the Western Australia Womens Football League. She is a highly skilled, running halfback who will also provide lot of physical presence. The Eagles have also put a focus on recruiting a lot of girls between the ages of 17-19, so keep and eye out for the youngsters in the line up.
Roxanne Brock, the founder and stalwart of the Zillmere Eagles women’s side has decided to hang up the boots after years of hard work and dedication at the football club. Ex WNBL player Leah Cannon, after an impressive year in 2014, will move on from football, as will Renee Stone, despite a solid debut season.
After initiating a complete redevelopment of their game plan before last season, this year will see the Eagles putting a real high performance focus on how they want to play footy. They have put measures in place to ensure that their skills, execution, training standards, and game day procedures are all at an elite level.
Coach Jacob Simmons-Bliss’ thoughts on 2015
“For us as a footy club we are expecting to play finals footy, that’s what we are working towards. How far we go into finals, well I’m not going to make a judgment on that because that’s for later on in the season. We are definitely focused on hopefully winning a flag this year after a narrow grand final loss last year but I’m not going to make any promises just yet.”
Who has the X factor?
Simmons-Bliss has earmarked Rachael Anstey to have a huge year in 2015. The starting ruckman, who will also float forward, prepares better than anyone, and will provide the Eagles with a lot of strength through the midfield. Look for her to give first use to the Eagles midfielders.