Fury coach Luke McGuire learnt a valuable lesson from his club’s defeat to Albion Park earlier in the finals and doesn’t plan on making the same error in Sunday’s decider.
The White Eagles advanced straight to the grand final on the back of a 1-0 win over League Championship winners Kemblawarra in the major semi final.
Almost a fortnight after the loss, McGuire believes he knows what went wrong that day and is adamant it won’t happen again in their rematch at WIN Stadium this weekend.
“In the first game we had a game plan that worked for a fair while but at the end we didn’t give ourselves the best opportunity to beat them on the day,” the coach said.
“It was more trying to contain them and that was an error on my behalf.
“I think we have to just play our normal game and let them worry about us as well.”
The Fury reached another decider with a gutsy 1-0 win over Wollongong Olympic in pouring rain at Crehan Park last Sunday.
While it may be McGuire’s first year at the helm, the Fury have had an abundance of grand final success in recent seasons. They won grand finals titles in 2012 and 2014 while known as Dapto-Dandaloo and were runners-up to Wollongong United last year before merging with Kemblawarra.
Dandaloo also won three straight titles from 2009 to 2011 before the initial merger with Dapto.
Several players on the Fury’s current roster, including former A-League defender Alvin Ceccoli, have played a key role in that success over the better half of the past decade and have been prominent again this week.
“Those guys are a calming influence on the team especially early on in the week,” McGuire said.
“There has been a bit of chat between the boys about ‘big week, pump up’ but a few of the boys who have been there in the past couple of years are just keeping a lid on things.
“They are helping make sure we do the right thing during the week just so we can make it as much as we can that it is just another game.”
McGuire is hoping to have veteran defender Shane Lyons back from a medial ligament tear for the clash.
Rhodes brothers, Tyson and Brenton, are also in a race to be fit.
All three missed last weekend’s victory over Olympic, but join a list of players hoping to play their part of grand final day.
“There is probably a few guys which we will wait to see what they do this week at training and then go from there,” McGuire said.
IPL – Grand Final
Albion Park White Eagles vs Kemblawarra Fury