CHFL: Bulldogs relieved after Ballan's loss to Clunes

James Evans and his Daylesford side remain two games clear inside the top eight with three home and away rounds remaining before finals.

James Evans and his Daylesford side remain two games clear inside the top eight with three home and away rounds remaining before finals.

DAYLESFORD coach Joel Adams is no stranger to the physical stuff and is putting the focus back on this brand of football as the business end of the season draws near.

The Bulldogs will have breathed a collective sigh of relief on Saturday evening upon learning of Ballan’s late slip-up against Clunes, which has left the spa country giant still two games clear in eighth despite their 18-point defeat by Springbank.

The Blues – chasing their first finals series in a long time – could have been within four points with a better percentage than the Bulldogs heading into the last three games of the home and away campaign. Instead, Daylesford is two games clear with fixtures against Skipton, Carngham-Linton and Waubra to play.

“You’d like to think we are set now, but there is upsets everywhere,” Adams said.

“The Daylesford of old used to just attack the body really hard, but we haven’t done that all year. Probably after half time we did that a little bit (on Saturday), but not as much as I’d like. That’s what I want to bring to the table now.

“I want to start hitting a few bodies and stuff like that. That’s the way finals are played so that’s what we want to get too.”

Adams believes his side can shake things around in the playoffs, but is keen to get back brother Luke, key defender Nathan Gudgeon and midfielder Kane Trimble to strengthen the line-up.

“I’d like to think we can get a couple of upsets,” Adams said.

“If we play that sort of footy we will be alright, but I’d really like to get a full side back for the last three games, to try and get a full side playing together.”

Meanwhile, Gordon is inside the top four for the first time this season after Waubra suffered just its second defeat of the year against Bungaree on Sunday.

The Eagles’ nine-match winning streak has lifted them to fourth, with the Roos now fifth and in need of some results to go their way to secure a double chance in finals.

There remains a number of fixtures that will alter top four standings, including a grand final rematch between Buninyong and Hepburn next weekend.

tim.oconnor@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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