General footy writing: It’s all about confidence

Confidence is very definitely a big element in on-field success in any sport.

This weekend, well known football identity Kevin Bartlett, on Saturday morning radio, gave his preview of the Round 10 Fremantle Richmond match.

‘KB’ showed a surprising level of faith in the Tigers, when he said he expected Richmond to win and win well!

He listed a handful of players he sees as having great potential with talent just bubbling beneath the surface. With Ben Cousins back in the mix – especially returning to play in his former hometown – KB suggested Fremantle might be in for a surprise.

I listened admiringly as he optimistically held forth about the Richmond team. Of course, my confidence in his sincerity was somewhat dampened when he proposed the winning margin   would be as much as 80 points – perhaps a little too optimistic!

During Friday night’s match Carlton vs. the Eagles, one of the television commentators remarked on Brendon Fevola’s freaky ‘along-the-ground’ goal early in the game, stating it’s just confidence gained from one rolling through the posts when you’ve had such a poor few weeks as a goal kicker that can make the difference – pointing out that you just had to look at Fevola to see the immediate lift it gave him.

On a Sunday football radio program, former North Melbourne and Sydney Swans player Wayne Schwass, made a very interesting observation while discussing Jack Riewoldt’s performance at Richmond. He felt that given the current situation with regards to Matthew Richardson, young Riewoldt deserved continued selection even if his senior performances are patchy. He said “Opportunity leads to confidence”.

Perhaps Kevin Bartlett is right – and if nothing else – talking up the possibilities of the game is the key.

Obviously skill, fitness and strategy are essential parts of any sport but at the highest level we forget how hard all these footballers – young ones and senior players alike – have worked and trained to be selected for the AFL and for their team.

So there are really NO bad players out on an AFL ground on any weekend; just bad days and poor judgement calls and varying levels of CONFIDENCE.


About Jill Scanlon

Blues fan and sports lover. Development through sports advocate; producer, journalist and news follower. Insanely have returned to p/t study - a Masters of International & Community Development. Formerly with ABC International / Radio Australia in Melbourne.

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