The great Mick Cronin probably isn’t familiar with the term ‘‘keeping it real’’, but the Gerringong coach does it as well as anyone.
In an era when coaches don’t reveal starting line-ups and revel in toying with the media, the former NSW and Australian centre was typically transparent discussing the Lions’ major semi-final against Warilla on Sunday.
Asked if the minor premiers would be doubly motivated after a 24-12 away loss to Warilla in round 16, Cronin said: ‘‘Not really. When you get to this time of year and you’ve played all year to make the grand final, I can’t believe you wouldn’t be hungry.
‘‘At the start of the year everybody wants to be playing in this game to get into a grand final, so you just expect the motivation to be there.
‘‘Put it this way, if they’re not motivated, I’m going to be struggling.’’
Gerringong’s loss to the Gorillas was their second of the year.
They appreciated the week’s break for finishing on top, though it remains to be seen of they are fresh or rusty come Sunday.
‘‘There’s no perfect way to do it,’’ Cronin said.
‘‘I’ve been around long enough to see sides do it one way and sides do it another way. The main thing’s turning up, being prepared to play.’’
Aside from the absence of Dylan Meharg (knee injury), Gong will run out with their strongest side.
The Lions haven’t changed the game plan from their previous meeting with the Gorillas.
‘‘People know how we’re going to play,’’ Cronin said.
‘‘When something’s worked for you all year why would you want to change? We won’t change anything, not as far as I know anyway.
‘‘There’s always a bit more enthusiasm getting down to this stage of the year, but I expect that from the other mob too.’’
Meanwhile, Milton-Ulladulla host Jamberoo in tomorrow’s minor semi-final.