In what has become one of the biggest games of the 2019 AFL season, Crows star and Ballarat native Matt Crouch says his excitement levels are high ahead of Adelaide's must-win clash with the Western Bulldogs in Ballarat.
"It's a pretty unique situation," Crouch told The Courier on Friday afternoon.
"It'd be awesome if we could have a win and sneak into finals. We're looking forward to getting out there, braving the chilly Ballarat conditions and doing what we need to do to win."
Matt and fellow Crows midfielder and brother Brad Crouch grew up in Ballarat, playing their junior footy for Ballarat Swans and Beaufort Crows before being drafted through the North Ballarat Rebels program.
The 24-year-old admitted he never thought he would get the opportunity to play an AFL game in his home town.
"When I saw at the start of the season that we were playing in Ballarat in round 23 I was looking forward to it a lot... Brad and I are both excited to see our mates and family so we can't wait.
"I saw the other day that it was a sell-out, it's great that they've been able to sell so many tickets and get that many people in the gate.
"I never got the opportunity to watch any AFL games in Ballarat... it's great for the town to have AFL footy in Ballarat and it's going to be a great day."
Crouch said it's going to take the Crows' best effort to get over the line against the Bulldogs on Sunday afternoon, calling the opponents the "in-form team of the competition."
The midfielder said pressure at the stoppage would be a major focus for Adelaide.
"We're approaching it like any other game, I think the contest will probably be the main thing... they've got some great midfielders playing some great footy.
"A big focus for us this week will be the contest and being able to defend (the Bulldogs). We want to make it pretty simple for us and get on top of the things we can control.
"If we get on top of the contest and put pressure on them that'll go a long way to winning the game."
Have you signed up to The Courier's variety of news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in Ballarat.