Making the transition from one football league to another is never easy.
There will always be detractors from the league you are leaving, the league you are joining and inside your own club.
The best way to validate the move is to have immediate success in the competition you join and Point Cook has done that in the Western Region Football League division 2.
The Bulldogs reached the grand final in their inaugural season after coasting to an 83-point win over Parkside in the preliminary final at the Whitten Oval on Saturday.
“It’s pretty exciting for the people who had a bit of a vision in the middle of last year and decided to make the move,” Point Cook coach Ian Denny said.
“Our nucleus was Point Cook guys and the guys we got back were Point Cook guys, but to put the team together in the first year and to get the firsts and seconds into the grand final, it’s a tremendous effort and everyone is really happy.”
Point Cook was clearly one of the two standout teams in the competition this season. The other being minor premiers Yarraville Seddon Eagles, who they will meet in the grand final at Avalon Airport Oval on Sunday.
The Bulldogs go into the game as the outsiders, having lost to the Eagles twice with one match abandoned after an umpire fell ill.
But Denny has seen enough in those encounters to believe his team is a genuine chance.
“We’ve had them under pressure,” Denny said. “If we can sustain the pressure, they might find themselves in some unfamiliar territory.
“I said to the players all along, we only have to beat them once and now is our chance.”
The Point Cook win was a sustained four-quarter effort.
The Bulldogs were ruthless, compiling 33 scoring shots to Parkside’s 10 and producing six goals in the fourth.
“We’ve just got to make sure we bring the pressure again in the grand final this week and sustain it like we did today,” Denny said.
Parkside could only manage three goals –easily its lowest output for the season.
Kirk Heberle kicked six goals for Point Cook. He even wasted a number of other opportunities before he was put on ice.
“He kicked our first five goals and we rested him off in the last quarter,” Denny said.
“He was just unstoppable.”
The height and strength of Andrew Robinson and Wayde Skipper was pivotal for Point Cook.
Matthew Poland kept “hunting” the ball in the midfield, while Leslie Butler racked up possessions at will across half-back and rising star Alex Grigg was superb on the wing.