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Whitecross gunning for a flag

VFL Prelim: Whitecross post-match Brendan Whitecross is proud of the team's efforts to push through some close fought games in recent weeks and is looking forward to the Grand Final this weekend.

Hawthorn veteran Brendan Whitecross is hoping to finally taste premiership success this weekend as he prepares to take the field in Box Hill’s VFL grand final against Casey on Sunday.

Having missed out on the Hawks’ last four AFL premierships largely through injury, Whitecross will now have the opportunity to hold a premiership cup aloft for the first time at either AFL or VFL level.

But rather than the opportunity to make up for lost time, Whitecross says it’s the quality of the team’s young players that has him excited for what might take place on Sunday.

“It’s been a tough journey,” Whitecross said post-match.

“The exciting thing for me is the group that we’ve got here at Box Hill this year.”

“It’s a very, very inexperienced group but the maturity in the group is second to none and I think that’s what’s held us in good stead through this finals series.”

“As much as it’d be nice to play in a grand final for myself and whatever the outcome might be, I think it’s going to be a very, very good game, good experience for our young guys and I know that they’re going to bring a lot of energy next week so we can’t wait.”

Read: Moore where that came from

Drafted at the end of 2007, Whitecross made his debut in 2009 following the Hawks’ grand final triumph over Geelong.

By 2011 the 28-year-old had cemented himself in the Hawks’ line-up, but was struck down the following year, suffering a ruptured ACL in the side’s qualifying final against Collingwood.     

A knee reconstruction saw the utility sidelined until Round 14, 2013, but as the Hawks prepared to play in what would be the first of three consecutive flags, Whitecross was again forced to watch on, this time going down in the preliminary final with a reoccurrence of the same injury.

Out of the game for more than a year as the Hawks went back-to-back against Sydney, Whitecross returned to the AFL side in Round 3, 2015, playing four games before helping Box Hill to a grand final in which they disappointingly went down to Williamstown by 54 points.

But off the back of a nail-biting, one-point win in their preliminary final against Williamstown, Whitecross is not only excited to have another shot at a premiership, but confident also the side can do what’s required.

“It’s a very, very good feeling,” he said.

“We know that it’s not done yet, we’ve still got one game to go and it’s a pretty big game so the boys are pretty stoked, there’s a really good buzz in the rooms at the moment so we’ve just got to get the job done next week and see what it holds.”

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs