The Western Bulldogs’ impressive interstate win over Port Adelaide on Saturday could have a lasting impact on the group as the season continues, according to coach Luke Beveridge.
The Bulldogs made it two from two on the road so far in 2021, backing up their 39-point victory over GWS in Canberra with a mature 16-point triumph at a hostile Adelaide Oval.
“The importance of these outings and these experiences can’t be undersold,” Beveridge said after the match.
“You find encouragement in the fact that the players believe in what they’re trying to do together.
“Against a team like Port on their home deck, where they’ve been significantly strong and don’t drop many, we can definitely bank that and feel good about it.
“Hopefully it’s an experience that as we continue on, it’ll help us.”
The game was fast and physical from the outset, with both teams enjoying periods of dominance.
In the second term the Power kicked five straight goals and threatened to take the game away from the visitors, but the Bulldogs steadied and held onto an unlikely lead at half time, which proved crucial in the end.
The Dogs then shrugged off a late charge from the home side to seal a famous victory.
“To arrest the landslide of the scoring…we held our nerve. Our players definitely did. It’s full credit to them,” Beveridge said.
“We didn’t do anything significant from the box at all. The players were just enormous – they won the game through their own stealth.
“What the season is teaching us is that teams, including us, will come with a pressure game and a physical game, and it’s just how long you can last in that.
“That was what I was most pleased about. We were able to last the four quarters in the physicality and the pressure game, so from that point of view it was very encouraging.”