Richmond Players

Tigers players celebrating their amazing win on the weekend

After their first foray into the AFL finals in many years in 2013, the Richmond Football Club had big, bold plans for 2014.

The team had improved every year under coach Damien Hardwick and were ready to launch themselves at the top of the ladder in his fifth season at the helm.

But the start of the year didn’t go according to plan, with key injuries, poor performances and confidence dropping by the week, resulting in a 3-10 start to the season.  This placed the Tigers equal bottom of the ladder with nine games to go.

They were written off by everyone else, as finals seemed a mathematical impossibility.  No team had ever recovered from such a shambolic start and the underachieving Tigers didn’t seem like the kind of club that could beat the odds.

But they dared to dream.

In the next two games, they beat two of the leagues cellar dwellers, giving them a bit of momentum, but the Tigers hadn’t won against anyone of consequence until they knocked off top four side Port Power, but at 6-10 surely it was too little, too late to save their season.

The media called for changes.  “Play the kids!”  “Change the game plan!”  The headlines shrieked, with some even questioning the coach’s tenure.

But the Tigers stuck to their plan and dared to dream.

The wins continued to flow, the momentum continued to grow and the confidence built within the playing group until, after eight wins in a row, they were one win away from an extraordinary turnaround.

But in their way was the premiership favourites, the Sydney Swans at their home ground, making it a daunting road trip for the Tigers.

The equation was simple, win the game and they complete a miraculous recovery into the finals, lose and a season is wasted.

The Tigers started brilliantly with the first five goals of the match, but Sydney are a fantastic side and even without a couple of their stars, they managed to get back into the game, taking the lead in the last quarter.

But the Tigers kept fighting, wresting back the advantage and holding on in a frenetic last quarter for a famous victory and a finals appearance.

In his post-match press conference, Coach Hardwick said, “Credit to our footy club though, every time we set foot in those four walls, we remained upbeat and at no stage did anyone come in and look down on life.”

They dared to dream and worked hard to make that dream a reality against seemingly impossible odds.

My question to you is, do you dare to dream?

Do you have bold aspirations that you are working towards, or have you given up because it’s all too hard?

Do you have the inner resolve required for success, or are you listening to the nay-sayers who are telling you that it can’t be done?

Are you stepping out into the greatness that you were born for, or are you happy to settle for mediocrity?

Let me encourage you to dare to dream and work hard towards your goals no matter what your current circumstances look like.

If you work in a job that you hate, dare to dream of a role where you can utilise your skills and do something that matters.

If you’ve tried and failed and tried and failed and tried and failed, dare to dream that if you persist and keep learning from your mistakes that you will get there in the end.

If you want to break free from anonymity, dare to dream of a time when your ideas are influencing and impact the world in a positive way.

The Richmond Tigers have proven that miracles can happen and they can happen for you too!

p.s. Go Tigers!  Eat ’em alive!

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