Jarrod Morgan admitted he felt like a broken man less than 24 hours after yet another Buninyong failure in a grand final.
For the fourth time since 2012, the Bombers were on the losing end of a Central Highlands Football League senior decider.
Morgan has been there for all of them – the last two as playing coach – and was a bitterly disappointed man on Sunday.
The weekend’s 38-point defeat continued a horrible run in finals for the club, which is still seeking its first senior flag since 2002.
During the last decade, Buninyong has reached the playoffs every year, but never claimed the holy grail.
“I haven’t read any article or even picked up my phone, but I can guarantee there’ll be stuff out there about Buninyong choking,” Morgan said.
“When the dust settles, it’s bloody hard to get there and we’ve done a pretty good job over the last 10 years to be as consistent as we have been and the opposition we’ve come up against every time we’ve played in the grand final has been bloody good.
“I would say Beaufort was a good side this year and Springbank was a good side in 2016, but we were definitely good enough to win it this year.
“I don’t know what it is. It’s easy to say we haven’t performed on the big stage – which we haven’t – but we’ve been good enough to get there. There’s been drastically different teams each time.
“The 22 blokes that ran out were fully committed, they’ve given their all and I can’t ask any more out of their preparation and their mindset and all of that stuff. That’s the hard thing to cop.
“You’ve got to swallow it and cop whatever comes your way (because) we weren’t up to it.”
Morgan thought Saturday’s performance was probably the team’s worst of the year.
“It would be and that’s for everyone to swallow,” Morgan said.
“We played our worst game for the year on the big stage. And that’s no lack of credit to Beaufort – they were amazing.
“They probably forced us to play a poor game. We were flat-footed and just a mile off it. They were bloody spot on.”
Season 2018 was Morgan’s fifth in charge of the senior side after he took over from Joe Gilbert following the 2013 grand final loss.
He is yet to reveal publicly his plans for next season.
“There’ll be an announcement in the next week or so,” Morgan said.
“We’ve got our presentation night next Saturday night and there’ll be an official announcement to the club then.”
Buninyong did get some premiership glory on Saturday with the reserves claiming back-to-back flags and the 15/under and 13/under netball teams winning grand finals.