BFL grand final: Shea provides special moment

Tyson Shea kicked a goal, turned to a legion of adoring Bacchus Marsh supporters, clenched his fists, threw both arms in the air and screamed.

SIREN: Bacchus Marsh captain Tyson Shea begins the premiership celebration - the first the Cobras have had in the Ballarat Football League. Picture: Lachlan Bence

SIREN: Bacchus Marsh captain Tyson Shea begins the premiership celebration - the first the Cobras have had in the Ballarat Football League. Picture: Lachlan Bence

There were many special moments in the Ballarat Football League grand final at the Eastern Oval on Saturday, but this was the biggest.

It epitomised what winning a flag meant for Bacchus Marsh Football Netball Club after some many tough years.

The last quarter was only six minutes old, but as the football sailed through the big sticks Shea knew the Cobras had their first BFL premiership home and hosed with a 45-point lead over Sunbury.

The emotions began to come to the surface.

And who could blame him.

It had taken 182 games for the 28-year-old to get there, but it was finally happening.

Shea said after thinking playing in a premiership with Bacchus Marsh might never happen, it had been impossible to hold back the emotions.

He said while you never like to get ahead of yourself in a game – any lead never feels enough - but it was clear victory had been secured.

So why not start celebrating and enjoying it. 

Shea said it had been great to share the day with so many people, including family, friends, teammates and supporters.

Shea said he had grown up listening to football successes stories from the old days in Bacchus Marsh.

His grandfather Neville Wilkie, who was at the grand final to see Shea hold the premiership cup aloft with coach Travis Hodgson, has been one of those storytellers.

Wilkie coached the former Bacchus Marsh, before the formation of the Cobras in a merger of the Tigers and Maddingley in 1978.

He led them to the 1974 premiership.

Now Shea will have his own story to pass on to his children – he and his wife Simone are expecting their first child early next year – and perhaps grandchildren just as his grandfather has.

For Shea it has a long journey.

He found himself as captain in just his second senior season in 2007 with just a handful of games under his belt.

He said it had been tough at just 18 years of age to take on the captaincy and something he would not have been able to do every season since without the support of family and friends.

Shea said one of the most satisfying aspects of the premiership was that it been achieved with 16 former Bacchus Marsh junior players.

He said it meant a lot have grown up playing football with them and then being able to share this experience.

Shea said this would reinforce to existing junior what could be achieved.