Donnybrook Football Club league coach Julian Burgess anticipates 2018 SWFL season

Evaluation: Donnybrook Football Coach Julian Burgess is adamant his young league side has the momentum to improve upon the club's 2017 SWFL season results. Photos: Thomas Munday.
Evaluation: Donnybrook Football Coach Julian Burgess is adamant his young league side has the momentum to improve upon the club's 2017 SWFL season results. Photos: Thomas Munday.

The Donnybrook Football Club has been looking ahead and begun planning for next year’s South West Football League season, according to league coach Julian Burgess. 

Burgess told the Mail the Dons had a positive second half to this year’s season.

The coach was adamant the side would continue the momentum through 2018 and deliver improved results.

“Every team gets better every year, don’t they? That’s the thing, so if you get caught napping you just finish on the bottom of the ladder,” he said. 

“The year was so close and everyone is improving every year, so we were one of those improving sides. 

“But if we don’t put in the hard work, get the people that we want next year and keep the same players for next year we’re going to struggle because everybody keeps moving forward.

“Basically, we’ve started planning for next year already, that’s how fast we get into it.” 

Burgess said former colts players such as Jacob Kendle, Bradman May, Joel Parker and Dion Parker stepped up and delivered positive results throughout the season. 

“We had a relatively new side put together from the year before,” he said. 

“On the whole we probably didn’t achieve what we wanted to achieve but it is a good building block for next year for the new side.” 

“We had a new side, four or five new travellers from what we’ve had previously, the average age for the team was 22-years-old I think.” 

Burgess said Donnybrook’s coaches and leadership group – featuring Cody Miller and captain Shane Cristaldi – helped the newer players transition into league football. 

“Everybody played their part so it was a team effort to try and get everybody on the same page and we think we did that by the end of the year, so it sets us up good for next year,” he said. 

The coach also stated recruit Kieran Hug and Midfielder Sean Lynch’s efforts made them standout players throughout the year.

Burgess said the organisation was continually looking for strong players and supporters to join in in the future. 

“We just want people to come around to the club and enjoy the fun that we have – we have good functions –and come and enjoy the club, be involved in the community and in footy,” he said. 

The Donnybrook Football Club will hold its annual presentation night on Saturday, October 7. 

The coach said Hug, Cristaldi and Samual Lowrie could have chance of polling well on the night.

How did they fare this season?

Donnybrook kicked off the season finishing third in the 2017 Dale Alcock Homes Pre-Season championship behind Bunbury and Harvey Bulls. 

The side went down to Augusta-Margaret River before knocking reigning premiers South Bunbury Tigers over by 38 points. 

The Dons suffered narrow losses in the first two SWFL rounds before eclipsing Bunbury in round three at VC Mitchell Park. 

After a loss to Eaton Boomers, the side returned to form with comfortable wins over Busselton and Carey Park. 

The Dons then came back after losses in rounds seven to ten with victory over the Tigers in round 11. 

The remaining seven rounds yielded mixed results (three wins, three losses and a draw), sitting ten points outside the top five after round 18.  

Donnybrook wrapped up the season with eight wins, nine losses, one draw and a 94.60 percentage. The team finished sixth on the SWFL 2017 ladder for the third consecutive year.

Jacob Green kicked 36 goals to place sixth in 2017’s Goal Kicker of the Year contest. 

Donnybrook’s colts and reserves teams finished tenth in their competitions. 

In August, the club committee voted in favour of plans to extend the clubhouse’s space and create new viewing areas. 

Refurbishments to the scoreboard took place earlier this month. 

Check out Donnybrook Football Club’s Facebook page for more information on the redevelopments.