New England Nomads tackle Saints

By Ben Lonergan (Armidale Express, 12/09/2014)
Only one win separates the New England Nomads and an unprecedented third successive Tamworth AFL premiership.

In a rematch of the 2013 decider, the Nomads host arch-rivals the Inverell Saints at Bellevue Oval in Saturday’s grand final.

The Nomads have only dropped one game this season, which was to the Saints, giving Saturday’s grand final all the makings of a blockbuster decider.

Nomads’ coach Zac Economou said the potential three-peat wasn’t what his side was focusing on. “We are just concentrating on winning the game on Saturday,” he said.

“That [becoming the first club to win three successive premierships] isn’t something we have talked about.

“Everyone is just really looking forward to getting on the field on Saturday.”

Economou arrived at the Nomads three years ago, at the start of the club’s golden run, and said it has been a pleasure to be a part of.

“The past three years have been great for the club,” he said.

“Being a university club we rely heavily on the intake of uni students, but there has always been the core group of players that have been here for a long time.

“Those are the guys you build a successful team around.”

The Nomads handed the Saints a 107-39 drubbing the last time the two sides met in the major semi-final two weeks ago.

“That was as good as we’ve played all season,” Economou said. “Everything came together.”

The Nomads will head into the decider full strength, meaning Economou will have to leave some players out.

“It’s the hardest part of coaching,” he said.

The grand final will start at 2pm at Bellevue Oval.

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