New England Nomads coach James Treweeke touted Saturday’s thrilling showdown between his team and the Inverell Saints as “the best game of footy” he has seen in his three years in the North West AFL competition.
The Nomads pipped the Saints by just two points and proved there is no longer one clearly dominant side within the competition.
“We have had that run of five-years-in-a-row but I think it shows that in the last few years even Gunnedah and Inverell are starting to catch up,” Treweeke said.
“Inverell are the top team this year and have shown why but the win of the weekend was probably the best win I have been part of in the last few years.”
With just 19 Nomads players making the trek to Inverell to take on the ladder leaders, the Armidale-based side were in for a tough challenge from the get-go.
Late in the game and battling fatigue, the Nomads found themselves behind on the scoreboard.
Enter Dave Richards.
The forward has landed best on ground honours in grand finals three times to earn a reputation as a big game player and he again rose to the occasion when his team needed him the most.
He delivered a flurry of goals in the final 20 minutes to land the 13.7-85 to 12.11-83 win.
“Even in that last quarter they went three goals ahead of us and somehow we just clawed our way back,” Treweeke said.
“David Richards, Modra, he did what he does sometimes and kicked four goals, pretty incredible goals as well which kept us in the game. Individual brilliance plus determination to not lose.”
Saturday’s win confirmed to the Nomads squad the belief that they have the talent to topple any of the competition’s teams.
“I have been trying to drill in that belief that we can win it and it just showed,” Treweeke said.
“I think a lot of the boys are starting to believe and it really hit home that we are here and we can win it.
“We have just got to build on it now though.”