As far as sporting clichés go “you have to lose a final to win one” is about is rubbish as they come, but it may, however, hold some truth for Wanderers this Saturday.
Taylor’s Contracting Wanderers predictably overran its fierce rival Waimea Old Boys at Brightwater on Saturday, 38-6, to earn a spot in the Nelson Bays division one club rugby final this Saturday.
Wanderers has been the form team all season and will head into this weekend’s final against Marist as firm favourites. But coach Todd Bavin has first-hand experience that the favourites tag doesn’t always count for much.
Two months ago, Wanderers, as defending champions, headed into the Tasman Trophy final against Nelson, before losing to the overwhelming underdogs.
Todd says his side will take that experience and learn from it for this weekend’s final.
“Finals are different games and different occasions, other teams lift and Nelson did that by 20 per cent [in the Tasman Trophy final] and we didn’t. We need to plan well and prepare so that come 3pm on Saturday we’re hissing and ready to go.”
He says he has little doubt that the side will rise to the occasion this time round.
“We had a pool session on Sunday and everyone is pretty focused. The biggest thing now is calming nerves and emotions.”
The division one final kicks off at 3pm this Saturday at Trafalgar Park.
Wanderers’ club manager Diane Drogemuller says the clubrooms will be open for supporters and sponsors after the game.