In life, promotion is a sought after success. Whether it be in the workplace, for businesses trying to crack a market, or in sport, promotion can only be good.
But promotion is something that is not easy to obtain, at least the best kind. The kinds of promotion that is worked for the hardest, is the one that is enjoyed the most.
That’s why the Animals path to an immediate return to Division 2 will be done the hard way, beginning via an Elimination Final against a local rival.
It’s a recipe that would not be out of place from your most expensive cook book.
The Animals have met their immediate season expectations in making the Top 4, an. Expectation thrust upon them as the sole side sliding down to Division 3 in 2019.
Many sides have hunted the Animals in 2019, with Canterbury getting the jump in the first clash at their home deck, with a second half blitz leaving the Animals in the rear view mirror.
It’s why the return clash, now a month in the past, was circled as a key game in making sure of a successful end to the 2019 season.
A dynamic display, often at times leaving the “Cobbies” reeling, was thrown out in trying conditions on an even more trying deck.
Now, with both teams owning a psychological advantage over the other, the ledger will be finalised in an elimination final which will see one side left lamenting a failed season, and the prospect of another year on the VAFA’s second lowest rung, as they battle it out at Whitefriars College.
Senior football at the best of times is a spectacle at any grade. Fast, hard, tough, and leaving you spent both physically, and mentally, it is a special kind of warfare. Add in finals footy to the mix, and you’ve got an environment only the best can thrive in.
Meet Paul Baranello.
The 8 time, potentially verging on 9 time, club best and fairest will enter yet another finals campaign, his last ending in heartbreak in 2015.
“Bara” had been predicted to see his importance in the side potentially downgrade, as the Animals next generation begins its ascension. However he was having none of that, and instead took it as a personal challenge to challenge the youngsters himself, and have himself a year, finishing last week with a 6 goal masterclass against Richmond Central.
Six is also the same amount of Animals left from the heartbreak of 2015, with Captain Chris Beluszar, Jonathan O’Connor, Lawrence Virgo, Michael Davis, and Dan Hill the remaining survivors.
They too, feel a burn too deep to ignore heading into Sundays clash, and all six, along with a fleet of new Animals ready to shine their name in lights, with a desire to end a season, and continue their own.