THE old footy cliche “it was the loss we needed to have” is likely to have been trotted out by the Bungaree faithful following its first defeat of the Central Highlands Football League season on Saturday.
And maybe it was.
Senior coach Greg Middleton wasn’t so sure, but admitted the defeat could be a blessing ahead of a difficult encounter with fellow top four side Waubra next Sunday.
“We wanted to win that game, for sure. That’s why it is pretty disappointing,” he said after the weekend’s seven-point loss to the Bombers.
“It might benefit us, I don’t know. Maybe it is a good kick up the bum that everyone needs to say that we aren’t doing enough, we aren’t that bit ahead of everybody else.
“The competition is very even and there’s no doubt about that. It will be interesting to see how they respond against arguably a better side next week.”
After remaining unbeaten in the opening 12 rounds of the season, the Demons stumbled in their first big test for some time against a hungry Bombers outfit that has proven it is still a genuine premiership contender.
Middleton spoke honestly about the performance in the rooms post-match and then questioned whether his side was getting ahead of itself after such a strong start to the season.
“We seem to get a write-up in the paper every week and on the news and maybe they are getting a bit ahead of themselves,” he said.
“Personally I think we are probably better than we were last year, but you can only go by what you dish up on a Saturday and that just wasn’t good enough. It wasn’t a real improvement from last year, to be honest.”
While still atop the ladder, Bungaree’s lead at the summit is back to just two points with tough games against the Roos and reigning premiers Hepburn still to come before finals.