From a high to a hiding - it's all part of our learning

A week's a long time in footy as we found out in Brisbane on the weekend. We had a big high after our first AFL win - by 27 points against Gold Coast at Manuka Oval - but then a big low after being on the wrong side of a 92-point hiding at the hands of the Brisbane Lions.

But, after our review, we put the loss behind us and started focusing on our historic game against Essendon at our brand new home - Skoda Stadium, or as Sheeds likes to call it, Skoda Coliseum.

It's been a massive year of firsts for our young club. Our first AFL game, our first game in our second home, Canberra, and our first win.

Now it's our first game at the Coliseum and fittingly, it coincides with Kevin Sheedy's first game against his old club, the Bombers.

Sheeds spent 27 years at Windy Hill, winning four premierships, but will be coaching against them and faces his protege, Canberra product James Hird.

As a player you always want to put in a good performance against your former club.


I found out what it was like against the Adelaide Crows earlier in the season and now Sheeds will be going through the same thing with the Bombers.

There's been a lot of media hype surrounding this showdown between the master and the apprentice but that's all been external.

We just want to play the brand of football that Sheeds wants us to.

It was a disappointing loss against Brisbane, but I took a lot out of playing against the legendary Jonathan Brown.

Former Carlton full-back Stephen Silvagni told me you always learn more from the times you get beaten and I learnt a lot playing against Brown.

Hopefully that will help me against a firing Essendon forward line with Stewart Crameri, Michael Hurley and Patrick Ryder.

It's a chance for all our supporters, both in Sydney and Canberra, to not only see our new stadium but also see one of the best teams in the country.

My old club Adelaide is also flying high at the moment and is second on the ladder, one spot ahead of Essendon and one behind West Coast. It's good to see my good mate Patrick Dangerfield carving it up for the Crows.

Both him and the whole team have improved rapidly and it's great to see them doing well.

That said, I'm glad to have moved to GWS and wouldn't want it any other way despite our teams being at opposite ends of the ladder.

For us it's all about taking steps forward. Last week against Brisbane was a step back so now we need to get back moving in the right direction against the Bombers.

Phil Davis is captain of the GWS Giants