On a very cold night at Darley Park, and after 18 months with no footy, both Darley and Sunbury were ready to go.
With Darley and Sunbury having lost key personnel over the last 18 months, both sides had a point to prove in this round one blockbuster.
It every bit lived up to the hype with both sides going at it at a breakneck speed.
The first quarter was a tight tussle after Darley won the toss and kicked to the southern end of the ground with nothing really separating the two sides as Sunbury took a slender one-point lead into the quarter-time break.
There was plenty of feeling in the game, with former Sunbury player Ben Said now lining up for Darley.
The Sunbury players were up and about and ready to show the competition that they meant business this year.
It was all Sunbury for the next 45 minutes of play, with Darley only kicking one goal after quarter-time due to Sunbury's dominance in and around the contest.
The contested and uncontested ball numbers were elite, and that's why Sunbury was in total control and took a comfortable 51-point lead into the three-quarter-time huddle.
If not for the hard work of Darley's Mitch Banner, the scoreboard could've looked much worst.
The sting had well and truly gone out the game in the last quarter, which allowed Darley some space and time to execute what they had practiced in the off-season.
At the end of the game, the scoreboard flattered Darley, as Sunbury were elite all over the ground.
Best on ground was Tyson Lever across half-back, the Guthrie boys did as they pleased, and Mick Edwards was still running the game out well. Sunbury looks very fit for the long season ahead.
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