NEAFL: Demons v Giants; Mapies v Tigers
All the NEAFL action from Eastlake taking on the Giants on Sunday and Belconnen taking on Queanbeyan on Saturday at Manuka Oval. Photo: Graham Tidy
Eastlake coach Anthony Bourke believes Canberra's best players will have to juggle a full-time football program with full-time work if clubs want to be competitive in the NEAFL.
Eastlake slumped to a horror 111-point loss at Manuka Oval on Sunday despite the admission from Bourke that the wet weather had come to his side's aid.
Eastlake failed to kick a goal in the first three quarters of the match before kicking two late goals to eventually lose 19.16 (130) to 2.7 (19).
It was a tough pill to swallow for the injury-hit Demons, who have won just one of their seven games this season.
"This year is challenging and we knew it would be. We were hoping to move competitive than what we are," Bourke said.
"[The competition] can't go back to where it was 10 years ago where there were four or five Canberra teams playing each other every week.
"We're keen to commit and go forward as much as we can, that's what this season is about. Maybe this year will change a lot of things, it's becoming a younger-man's competition.
"The expectation on training and playing will be like what the AFL was in 1995, players working full-time and training four times a week."
The strong Giants outfit was bolstered by AFL premiership players Josh Hunt and Stephen Gilham.
By the end of the third quarter, Eastlake had amassed just six points compared to the Giants' 102.
Demons star Aaron Bruce did his best to lift his teamin the gloomy conditions.
Eastlake is second last on the ladder with just one win, while the Giants are third.
"We knew we were going to be up against it, but we're disappointed," Bourke said.
"It was one of those days ... in one respect the weather slowed them down a bit. They really could have made a mess of us if it was dry and they could get their running game going.
"We're just a young side and it knocks you around when you can't get your hands on the ball."