After battling adversity for so long, Easton Wood admits he was unprepared for the AFL’s ultimate success.
But the feeling has grown on the Western Bulldogs captain quickly.
Wood and his teammates are the toast of the league after beating Sydney in Saturday’s epic grand final – only the second premiership for the Bulldogs.
“When that siren went, I’ve never been more unprepared emotionally for a moment in my entire life,” he told Channel Nine’s Footy Show.
“It was the finality of it that kind-of washed over and I realised that it’s done – they can never, ever take that away.”
But in the last frenetic couple of minutes before the final siren, there was one last moment of apprehension.
After Liam Picken kicked the goal that guaranteed the win, teammate Jordan Roughead excitedly ran up to Wood.
“He was saying ‘we’ve won it, we’ve won it’ and I remember saying to him ‘don’t jinx it mate, don’t bloody jinx it – just play it out, for God’s sake’,” Wood said.
Wood added that thanks to social media, he quickly saw photos of himself and Bob Murphy holding the premiership cup aloft.
Wood took over as captain when Murphy suffered his season-ending knee injury in round three.
“I get chills thinking about it and it’s just a special, special moment,” Wood.
“Bob even talked about making it (the photo) as a wallpaper for every room in his house.
“That might be something to look into.”
Murphy is the Bulldogs’ spiritual leader and coach Luke Beveridge famously called him onto the stage to present him with his Jock McHale medal.
Wood and Murphy then accepted the cup.
“To share that moment with him on stage – it’s just a thing of dreams,” Wood said.
“I really have to pinch myself now thinking about it, it’s insane, it’s unbelievable.”
Wood said Murphy was one of the people who first welcomed him to the Bulldogs.
This season, Murphy has played a crucial off-field role, especially supporting Wood in the captaincy role.
“Easton Wood has done a fantastic job as a stand-in skipper,” teammate Matthew Boyd told Channel Seven’s Game Day.
“But Easton wouldn’t have been able to do it without the support that Bob has shown.”