Dylan Grimes insists he and his Richmond teammates are as hungry for success as they’ve ever been.
The Tigers enter the 2018 finals series as reigning premiers following their drought-breaking triumph in 2017, as well as the holders of this year’s minor premiership having finished two games clear on top.
Ahead of Thursday night's Qualifying Final against Hawthorn at the MCG, Grimes says the playing group continues to crave the thrill of the win despite the overall output dropping off in the final month of the season.
“Last year gives you a bit more confidence I guess, because you’ve been there before,” the gun defender said on SEN Breakfast.
“There’s the same hunger, there’s the same nervousness, same kind of expectations to perform but I suppose there is a tinge of confidence because we were there last year.
“Now there are a number of players in our group who have played some finals footy together and been able to perform well, so there’s that side of things.
“As a playing group we are really excited and hungry because we have been there but also because there’s a huge opportunity.
“We are going to be tested this week. I don’t know if we’ve seen a finals in my time that have been this close and this unknown so there’s a mix of emotions.”
Asked as to why Richmond could be vulnerable after some close calls in recent weeks, Grimes admits performance has not been quite as accomplished as it could be.
However, the lacklustre three-point Round 23 win over the Western Bulldogs will serve as a valuable learning tool for Tigers players and coaches alike.
“I don’t think there’s any team that isn’t vulnerable to be honest,” he added.
“I think every team can be beaten. We haven’t been playing our best footy over the last month.
“The Bulldogs gave us a good shake, a few other teams gave us a good shake as well, but there were a couple of things we needed to address as a team and the coaches have done that.
“I think it was the best opportunity for us pre-finals to get some really valuable lessons. It was a good learning experience and something that will give us confidence in the finals when we play teams who play a high handball, quick game of footy.”
Listen to Grimes’ chat with Garry & Tim in the player below:
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