Hamilton Boomers coach Graeme Byrne declared his players winners despite losing Sunday's grand final

Proud coach: Hamilton Boomers mentor Graeme Byrne said he could not be prouder of his players after making Sunday's all abilities grand final.
Proud coach: Hamilton Boomers mentor Graeme Byrne said he could not be prouder of his players after making Sunday's all abilities grand final.

Most coaches are shattered after losing a grand final.

The Boomers, Hamilton Kangaroos’ all abilities football team, lost Sunday’s grand final at Stawell to the Ballarat Bulldogs by four points.

 Coach Graeme Byrne could not be prouder.

"As I keep saying, four years ago these guys weren't even playing footy, so to play in a grand final is a real feather in their cap,” he said.

“The whole idea of this competition when it was put together was to give kids of all abilities a game of football, premierships weren't even a thought.

“So I keep telling them every time they pull on a guernsey they are winners. But it is pretty hard to tell them to play for fun, they play for keeps.”

The Boomers coach said the eventual premier was always going to take some beating.

“Ballarat has always been the measuring stick,” he said.

“They won six or eight grand finals in Melbourne before coming back to this league.

"And I think they beat the Hampden or South Warrnambool Hurricanes by over 100 points in the last two grand finals, so to be beaten by four points is not too bad.”