'Big dogs' do business for Laurie and must again
FINALS' football is where the 'big dogs' come out to play and Goodna coach Laurie Campbell is just happy he has a production line of them.
The Eagles boast former Queensland Cup representatives such as Ramon Filipine, Rez Phillips, Max Seumanutafa and Zac Lemberg.
Throw in former Sydney Roosters half/hooker Alby Talipeau and big game club stalwarts such as Corey Kirk and Campbell has no doubt he has the calibre of players capable of lifting an extra notch in today's A Grade grand final against Fassifern.
A fortnight ago they did the business with a 30-28 major semi-final win over the Bombers after the bell.
The week off has come at the right time for Goodna.
"Six weeks ago we set ourselves the goal of having two goes at it, so finishing first or second,” Campbell says.
"Then I said to them that our next goal was to play in the grand final again.
"They achieved that. You know what the next (goal) is don't ya'?”
"The catchcry, which came out of Alby Talipeau's mouth, was 'big dogs come out to play in semis'.
"The experienced 'big dogs' did come out in the major semi - the likes of Rez, Corey, Alby and Ramon.
"Ramon defended like he never had before in his life. He defended like his life depended on it.
"Sione Piutau was the same and big (Taeao) Kefu.
"We had a team meeting and I said to them 'this team is full of big dogs' because you've got ex-NRL, ex-Q Cup and senior A Graders like Corey Kirk who have been playing A Grade here for years.
"The 'big dogs' have just got to come out and fire in the grand final.”
Talipeau is famous for coming up with the big plays. In 2008, he broke the hearts of Jets' fans with a late try in the Queensland Cup grand final for Souths-Logan.
A fortnight ago he was up to his old tricks with a last-second kick to set up Ben Thorburn for the try that tied it up 28-all against Fassifern, before Kick landed a sideline conversion.
"With his experience, playing this local league Alby probably looks two or three plays ahead,” Campbell said.
"He will pull the team whichever way he wants to go. There are some things that he does that won't come off and I will wear that, because the majority of them do.
"What I like about him is that he plays what is in front of them.
"That is the way I want them to play footy. You have got to have structure but I have told them 'if the structure is on the left and you see something on the right then I want you to go right'.”