GRAND final combatants Kolora-Noorat and Panmure epitomise one of the true qualities of country football-netball clubs – family.
Four sets of brothers will line up in each of the Power and Bulldogs sides contesting the Warrnambool and District league senior football decider today
Panmure brothers in arms Daniel Meade (left), Ben Meade, Jeremy Bidmade, Jye Bidmade, Simon O’Keefe, Adam O’Keefe, Sam Mahony and Ben Mahony are ready to take the WDFNL premiership from Kolora-Noorat.
The Kolora-Noorat family connections start at the top, with coach Ben Kenna teaming with goalkicking brothers Luke and Nick.
Then there’s Mark and Tom Clissold, Sam and Patrick Moloney and Mitch and Sam Elford.
It is a similar story at Panmure, where first-year coach Simon O’Keefe will start in the centre square with his brother Adam.
Ben and Daniel Meade will shore up the back line and Sam and Ben Mahony could sneak a goal.
Jye, should he overcome a quad injury, and Jeremy Bidmade will find plenty of football in the midfield.
Bush football-netball clubs are built on families and the Power and Bulldogs are two of the best examples.
Each hosted more than 300 supporters at their clubrooms on Thursday night and, win or lose today, a similar number will celebrate the season tonight.
Sam Elford, 21, said the strong family vibe at the Power meant the playing group had “a connection on the field and off the field”.
He said he signed with the Power — after years at Hepburn and Terang Mortlake — because he wanted to play with Mitch, 23.
“We both have grown up pretty close together, always played footy together,” he said.
“Most memories of my childhood are playing footy with him.”
Sam Mahony, 22, followed older brother Ben, 23, to Panmure after playing juniors at Allansford and two seasons at South Warrnambool.
“I went there to play with a few good mates and play with (Ben),” he said.
“It is a real family club. We’re a real close-knit group of mates.”
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