Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Final Interview: Dana Neale

He's the one in the middle with the ball c/o Gordon Dedman
Probably the easiest interview we could do, with DC writer and Southampton Stags Quarterback Dana Neale...

DC: This is the first final for the Stags after the single institution split, do you feel that this shows the Stags are back to their previous form?

My first year was the second season after the split. All of our coaches talk endlessly about past seasons where they dominated the league, which really motivates us and gives us belief that under their guidance, this group of players could also become a unit up there with the best of the league.

The Stags will only be back to their previous form once they’re in the Championship final, something we were very close to last year. Winning the plate would be an incredible achievement for us and would set us up with a great foundation for next season.

DC: Is there a hint of disappointment that you aren't competing in the national championship?

There is. After reaching the national semi-final and without an exodus of players in the last off-season, we all know we should have done better. Having said that, we all know that the plate is an excellent opportunity for us to win silverware and we will be as determined as ever to win this game.

DC:You had quite a bad injury during the season, how has the recovery been and how are you doing now?

I redid a previous injury that happened several years ago. I am as fine as I ever will be. It may limit my mobility a little bit, but there was very little to limit in the first place.

DC: This is the first ever meeting between NTU and Southampton, do you think there will be any surprises?

Not any surprises per se. We know they have a defence that gets plenty of turnovers, a strong running game and more than competent passing game. We expect to see that and we’ll have a work cut out for us.

DC: Your offence has struggled versus other top units in the TVC (Brighton, Portsmouth), are you concerned about NTU's strong defence?

If you look at our results before Christmas, our offence put up numbers similar to that of last years. After Christmas injuries hit us hard in the offensive backfield and we simply weren't good enough. We know how NTU’s defence likes to flock to the ball, especially their DB’s.

We have developed two offences during the season, one with me at QB and another with #83 Tommaso Bendoni at QB, running about the place. I’m confident that with this diversity, we’ll find a way to score points. We’ll see whether we can score enough.

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