ALEX White knew his efforts in the Warrnambool and District league second semi-final weren’t up to scratch.
Minor premier Panmure had been thrashed by Merrivale and White, 23, had endured a torrid afternoon as the Tigers’ onballers ran riot.
“Their midfield last week absolutely got on top of us. You look at your work rate, skill level, you take it personally,” he said.
“It was straight on the track (after the loss). I knew my performance last week was nowhere near where it should be.”
But a week is a long time in football.
Seven days on from the humbling against the Tigers, White was all smiles after helping the Bulldogs thrash Dennington in the preliminary final.
The 15.15 (105) to 9.6 (60) win booked Panmure a berth in the grand final, its hopes of a third consecutive flag still alive.
White was among about a dozen key contributors for the Bulldogs and arguably the most influential player during their third-term blitz.
His centre clearance work at the feet of ruckman James Keane directly led to goals as the victors piled on 6.2 to 0.1 in 14 minutes.
The grand final will be his third. He helped Koroit win the Hampden league flag in 2009 and was a part of the Saints’ loss last season.
“As a midfield group we’re a team within a team. We’re harsh on each other, we expect results,” White said.
Panmure coach Simon O’Keefe played up the work of White and his midfield teammates in taking the game away from Dennington in the third term.
The clearance tally — including stoppages around the ground — during the term was 10-5 while the inside-50 tally was 16-8.
“If you can get your hands on the footy in the middle it makes a big difference,” O’Keefe said.
“The way we worked, we had some good blocks and we could hit a forward up without blazing away.”