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Buckley: One of the best of 2014

Jordan Chong - AFL Media  August 23, 2014 9:23 PM

Watch a very proud Nathan Buckley discuss his young team's win over Greater Western Sydney after the match.
Nathan Buckley implores his players to give one last effort at three quarter time during Saturday's win over the Giants.

Nathan Buckley implores his players to give one last effort at three quarter time during Saturday's win over the Giants.

Collingwood's round 22 road trip to face Greater Western Sydney would have been an unlikely candidate for best win of the year at the start of the season, but that's exactly what it was according to coach Nathan Buckley

The Magpies overcame a red-hot Giants side by eight points in the face of an almost unprecedented injury toll that left them with only one interchange player for almost all of the second half.

Vote for your top three players from Collingwood's gutsy eight-point win in the Magpie Army Player of the Year Award.

Clinton Young and Dane Swan both suffered hamstring injuries in the first half and then Brent Macaffer ruptured his ACL early in the third term.

On top of that, the Pies came from 21 points down and needed the victory to keep its finals hopes alive.

"I just said to the boys at the end that at the start of the year if you were involved at the club and with our ambitions...if you had said that would have been one of our better wins of the year, you would have had someone telling you you were kidding yourself but I thought it was," Buckley said.

"The last quarter showed some resilience and some real want."

"Our young players stood up when challenged."

The Giants led from the opening minutes are were not reeled in until the 23-minute mark of the final term when Josh Thomas slotted through his third goal of the match.

Steele Sidebottom then iced the game and kept his team's finals hopes alive with the sealer a couple of minutes before the siren.

Buckley said some of the younger players in the team – Thomas, Marley Williams, Jackson Ramsay and Ben Sinclair among others – were outstanding.

"It is just the young blokes standing up and being able to make the right decisions at the right time," Buckley said.

"You don't expect it all the time given their relative inexperience but a night like tonight makes you grow up pretty quick."

The Magpies will need to beat Hawthorn next week and hope other results fall their way should they feature in the finals this year.