Borden boy the Tigers’ grand final hero
From the small country town of Borden, Anthony Davis stood tall on the big stage as he kicked the winning goal for Claremont in their thrilling premiership triumph over Peel Thunder at Optus Stadium on Sunday.
Davis marked an errant defensive kick from the Thunder inside the final two minutes of the game, calmly going back to slot the winner from a tough angle in the pocket to put the Tigers five points up.
The Tigers defended desperately on their half-back line in the dying seconds as a Leno Thomas smother helped secure an upset 13.4 (82) to 11.11 (77) victory.
Davis was outstanding playing on a wing, named in the Tigers’ best after his vital 15 disposals, three marks and four inside 50s but none were more important than his fourth-quarter goal.
The Borden product shared the premiership success with fellow Great Southern players Jye Clark (Railways) and Ted Batchelor (North Albany).
In his second season with the Tigers colots, Davis said there was no better moment than hearing that final siren.
“(The win) felt to me as though 40 weeks of hard work has paid off and I couldn’t think of a better bunch of blokes to share it with,” he said. “I played on the wing for the whole day and knew that my run between 50s was vital. I thought I did what the coach asked and played the role my team needed to achieve success.
“It was a quick kick out of defence that landed in my lap, so was thinking how good is this.
“When I was lining up, I was quietly confident but I knew I just had to kick through the ball and back myself.”
The 18-year-old said growing up in Borden was a key part of getting to WAFL level.
“I played all juniors in Borden and I think that’s what has helped me get to where I am today,” he said. “Although Borden has folded from the OFA, I hope to one day return and play in that competition, whether it be in five or 15 years. I still have the majority of my family living in the Borden, Boxwood Hill area and I feel humbled to represent Borden on the biggest stage possible.”
Davis added Clark and Batchelor were crucial in the team’s win.
Clark came to life in the final quarter, kicking an outstanding goal and finished with 15 touches, four tackles and four inside 50s.
Batchelor , laid six tackles and won a couple of pivotal one-on-ones in defence.
Earlier, Claremont’s reserves suffered a heartbreaking six-point defeat to West Perth.
North Albany junior Corey Hitchcock kicked two goals heading into half-time. Mt Barker’s Jordan Reid was one of his side’s best with 15 possessions, 35 hit-outs, five marks and a goal while Jerramungup-bred Tom Baldwin was solid in defence with 13 disposals.
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