CAMPERDOWN export Adam Coote believes he can push for a second straight Stawell Gift finals berth today.
The AFL boundary umpire earned a semi-final spot after he ran second in his heat on Saturday, clocking 12.188 running off 11 metres.
It was the 10th fastest heat time.
Coote, 30, said he felt off mentally before his heat and felt he could improve.
“I was a little bit disappointed,” he said yesterday.
“I would have liked to have held (Aaron) Stubbs off. I just ran down without switching on mentally
‘‘I didn’t savage the line.
“I felt like I drifted down there.
“Tomorrow I will make sure I am more switched on.”
Coote, who ran 12.382 to place third in last year’s Gift final said it was an open field.
An injury cloud hangs over Jamaican star Asafa Powell, who made the semi-finals despite finishing third in his heat.
“In terms of times it is an open Gift,” Coote said.
“There were a lot of people close on times in heats and with my experience of last year I will tap into that.
“The semi-final comes first and it’s do-or-die so I will have to be really switched on and run hard and blast through the gates at the end.”
Coote ran the boundary for the Carlton-Richmond round one clash on Thursday night.
“It flattened me a bit. Hopefully I can improve a bit from being a bit fresher,” he said.
Last year’s Stawell Gift winner Matthew Wiltshire failed to make the semi-finals.
The Ballarat runner clocking 12.547 in his heat.
The Stawell Gift final is at 2.45pm today.