Coniglio drew on Eagles to inspire GWS win

GWS skipper Stephen Coniglio explained the inspiration behind their AFL comeback win over Essendon.
GWS skipper Stephen Coniglio explained the inspiration behind their AFL comeback win over Essendon.

A former diehard West Coast supporter, GWS captain Stephen Coniglio drew on one of the Eagles' most famous wins to inspire a gritty AFL comeback victory over Essendon.

The Giants' season sprung to life on Friday night, overcoming a 29-point deficit to defeat the Bombers and jump back into the top eight.

Coniglio, in his first season as GWS skipper, slammed his players in a hard-hitting spray at halftime.

He believed his team could come back and the star midfielder wanted to know if his teammates wanted it badly enough.

Watching a clip of West Coast's extraordinary 54-point comeback against Geelong in 2006 provided Coniglio with motivation for a speech that former Giants captain Callan Ward has lauded.

"It was such a big game and, as a big West Coast fan growing up, I was so disappointed because we were down by that number of goals," Coniglio said on Monday.

"But there was also something in me that was like 'nah, they're going to come back and win'.

"It was acknowledging (to GWS) that we're not playing anywhere the level that we expect of each other and, from now on, it's all about how we're going to come back and win this game.

"I referenced the (2006) West Coast game and that belief; at some stage in that halftime it would've been (former Eagles champion) Ben Cousins or someone saying we're going to win this game.

"It was an important game for us, Essendon beat us last year and I said 'enough's enough'."

Coniglio will be hoping the Giants' season follows a similar trend to West Coast's 14 years ago, with the Eagles going on to claim the 2006 flag.

GWS have landed in Perth before Thursday night's derby against Sydney and a round 13 clash with the Eagles.

Australian Associated Press