Molong coach Dean Butler admitted his troops let themselves down in last week's Oilsplus Cup Northern Division major semi-final, letting Wellington control the way they played and, as a result, forcing themselves into the last chance saloon this weekend.
The Magpies were sporadic at best on Saturday, falling out of their structure and not executing in attack. That allowed Wellington, the minor premiers, to wrestle momentum in their favour, win 20-17 and earn grand final hosting rights, with Molong resigned to a preliminary final showdown with Geurie.
There's no two ways about it, if Butler's troops do the same this weekend, they'll be left wanting and will likely be left watching another grand final from the sidelines.
If we can get back to (our structures) ... if we can do it for 80 minutes we'll be well and truly into it.Molong coach Dean Butler
"We only played 20 minutes of good footy (against Wellington)" Butler said.
"If we can get back to (our structures) ... if we can do it for 80 minutes we'll be well and truly into it."
The Magpies have the advantage of being at their Dr Ross Memorial Recreation Ground home this weekend, although that didn't help in last year's preliminary final, in which they were also beaten by Wellington.
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This year's Magpies outfit is more well-rounded though and is better for that third finish last year, there's no doubting their desperation either considering they were beaten grand finalists the two years before that.
They also have the benefit of knowing they're capable of beating the Goats, the defending premiers, having done so twice in 2019, most recently in the final round of the regular season a fortnight ago.
"We've got some things we need to work on," Butler said, his side is chasing its first premiership since 2014, a remarkable three-point win they snatched from Blayney in the last seconds of the game.
The Goats are coming off a 35-17 win over Coolah in last week's minor semi-final.
Saturday's preliminary final kicks off at 3.15pm at Molong.
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