Underdog Saints full of belief - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Underdog Saints full of belief

By Justin Chadwick 30/09/2010 06:44:48 PM Comments (0)

St Kilda coach Ross Lyon is convinced his team are mentally primed to topple Collingwood in Saturday's AFL grand final re-match and has happily claimed the underdog status for the MCG blockbuster.

The Magpies finished the home-and-away season on top of the table and are $1.60 favourites to claim this year's premiership despite last week's match finishing in a draw.

Collingwood showed there would be no room for sentiment in the re-match, dropping mercurial forward Leon Davis for Tyson Goldsack.

St Kilda made one forced change, recalling young ruckman Ben McEvoy for the injured Michael Gardiner (hamstring).

Lyon said his players possessed the ultimate belief they could topple Collingwood but conceded Mick Malthouse's chargers deserved to enter the match as favourites.

"I think they still go in really strong favourites statistically and that's probably fair enough," Lyon said on Thursday.

"But we're a reasonable team you know, we're not bad.

"We run and compete and spread reasonably well ourselves.

"We are capable of big quarters in scoring and I think we proved that.

"We came back from four goals down twice (last week).

"We acknowledge they (Collingwood) were the best team of the year and statistically on the weekend they were pretty good, but we've got some things we do OK.

"I think we've won 39 of our last 48 (games), six by under a kick.

"Over the last six or eight weeks we've been building, so we don't need to convince ourselves of anything really.

"If we just focus on Collingwood we are going to lose, so we need to play some of our best footy."

St Kilda captain Nick Riewoldt said the team had gained valuable confidence from its ability to erase a four-goal halftime deficit last week.

"We're confident given any situation we find ourselves in that we're going to be able to work through it," Riewoldt said.

"We've been able to do that for a couple of years and I've got great faith and belief in the group to be able to do it again.

"Clearly there were some deficiencies in the first half that we got right in the second half and I think it took a pretty special group to do what we did in the second half."

Lyon said the unselfish nature of his player group would hold them in good stead in the re-match.

"AFL footy is littered with people that go in (to grand finals) trying to win Norm Smiths and let the team down," he said.

"We are certainly a team that's focused on individual roles and working for the team and not worrying about results, because if you do (worry about the result) it gives you anxiety and you can't focus on the job at hand.

"So we stay in the now, we focus on moment by moment and we'll see where that takes us.

"If we do that we don't have to worry about trying to convince ourselves `are we going to win or lose?'

"Because people who do that get stuck and don't execute."

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2021 AAP

0 Comments about this article

Post a comment about this article

Please sign in to leave a comment.
Becoming a member is free and easy, sign up here.

« All sports news