Monday, 1 August 2005

We keep our toaster in the bathtub

Every single person on earth knew we were going to get pounded yesterday. Even the people who pick us every week just because they want us to win knew deep down that they were wasting a selection when they tipped us. Sure, stranger things have happened over the years but there was just never any prospect of us getting up on that particular Saturday afternoon at the G.

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For all the voodoo rituals and sacrifices we'd performed beforehand, you could tell how it was going to turn out in the first few seconds. Entire starting 18 attempt to beat on Nick Riewoldt in a misguided attempt to look hard despite the fact that about 15 of them are complete cream puffs who couldn't scare your grandmother (Miller, Neitz, Read - you are the exceptions) and it predictably turned out to be a massive failure.

First bounce, ruck infringement, 50m penalty, goal.
Another pointless free kick another goal.

And so on and so forth until we were four goals down within ten minutes and it was looking ugly. Somehow, mainly due to Russell Robertson continuing his career year, we actually ended up within range late in the quarter. But when the ball rolled around for ten minutes and dropped to Nick Dal Santo, who proceeded to beat FIVE FARKING PLAYERS and snap his 4th goal of the quarter it was time to bust out the razor blades and start chopping ourselves to pieces.

Crowd watch: Clowns sitting behind us calling everything a disgrace and weak/dogs/shit etc.. I don't understand this concept - they earn $250,000 a year and can score hot women despite often looking like the back end of a horse and they're a disgrace? We're the idiots who have actually forked over money to go in, sit there being fat and unfit, swilling bourbon and cokes from a plastic cup @ $9 a shot and watch them. I'll never get it. Much like, as we've previously discussed, how idiots boo and lose the plot when the opposition rush a behind but go wild in celebration when their own side does it. 40000 people sit there whinging about the umpires being inconsistent and they don't see the irony? We're all scum.

Erm anyway.. we were technically still in it but the final nail in the already tightly sealed coffin came when somebody (Wheatley?) shanked a kick 25m along the boundary line, got done for deliberate and we conceded a goal straight away. Stick a knife in them, they're done. We bravely soldiered onto half-time and remained within striking distance. Obviously the talk in the sheds at half-time was all about how the 3rd quarter would make or break our season and how the boys had to get amongst it and show some urgency. Sadly I believe this talk was given by Ronald McDonald as we proceeded to play one of the worst quarters I have EVER seen in my life and concede 10.6

It should be noted that at the start of this quarter things had gone completely haywire. For the first time all year Holland was put in the backline, but rather than playing the CHB position that he very well might get away with they put him on Fraser Gehrig instead - with predictably shite results. Obviously as the one person who called for him in the back-half I am prepared to cop shit for this, but I maintain that if it was done right it could work. This time it wasn't. I can't see what was wrong with Carroll, he may have copped a few goals early on but almost every one was after he'd beaten the G(olden Shower) Train in one-on-one contests and seen the ball drop to the ground with absolutely NOBODY in support to clear it. It was quite the impressive performance from Carroll I thought, so it was a shame that he got murdered in a big bump, went off on a stretcher and is every possible chance to miss this week. Just when he'd played two decent games in a row - that's cruel.

The third quarter was also noticeable for the sudden appearance behind us of one of the most irritating groups of football fans - the home commentator. With a radio glued to his ear he would spend the entire quarter orgasmically squealing as the Saints walked all over us. "MILNEY! POWELLY! BLAKEY!" he cried out, adding the Y on the end at earsplitting volume in a shambolic fashion that seemed to suggest he wanted people to think that he was actually familiar to the players and not just some jerkoff who failed in the first round of Channel 31 footy commentator school. The only upside to the whole thing was that he was too busy doing his B. McAvaney impression and pulling himself furiously that he couldn't hear us openly mocking him. He might have been a clown but he was certainly having the last laugh as the Saints rapidly slammed on goals in front of our eyes and took a 78pt lead into 3/4 time. The lowlight of the game - nay the season - was the passage of play where we rebounded out of 50 about four times, twice had players 10m on their own hit pinpoint kicks onto the chest of the opposition and eventually fell apart to concede. Words don't do justice to just how awful it was to watch - it was as if the side has been shredded of all confidence and self-belief and were just shambling around like Fitzroy 1996. If you were there you'd know exactly how bad it was. I think I almost cried.

I just walked out at the 3/4 time siren. I couldn't stand it anymore, and if I had to listen to Kaptain Kommentary doing his continuous call for another 30 minutes I'd have killed myself. It's officially one of the earliest walkouts I've ever involved myself in, but it was necessary. The way it was going we were going to cop another 8 goal quarter and lose by 140, and I wasn't going to stand around and watch that shit. Thankfully the Saints pulled the pin in the last and we kept the damage to a lucky 88. Just wonderful.

Even better when it turned out that in addition to Carroll's kamikaze suicide mission Bruce did his knee, Neitz joined in and did his as well and James McDonald his back. Aren't our "best" 22 enough of a disgrace at the moment without a black death style injury plague on top? God I hate sports. Apparently Whelan is hurt as well, so fuck me let's just forfeit next week already and save ourselves a hammering. "Player of the Year" Votes

5 - Russell Robertson
4 - Brent Moloney
3 - Nathan Carroll (Wrecked Gehrig early on, and only copped goals because he had absolutely NO support when the ball hit the deck)
2 - Jeff White (Pff.. I'm struggling)
1 - Adem Yze (3 goals.. that's good enough for 1pt even if he didn't do much else)

Apologies to Read, Miller (christ I'm struggling), Wheatley (!?), Chris Johnson (drop him now and I'll blow something up)

Minuses to Bizzell (didn't even know he was playing until the 3rd quarter), Johnstone, Green (somehow gave away three frees despite being softer than the Stay Puft Marshallow Man), Neitz and the entire Football Club for being a complete farce. Extra minus points to me for picking a side to follow that are destined never to win anything more than the football equivalent of a 2yo Maiden at the Newcastle Trots.


28 - Travis Johnstone
23 - Brad Green
21 - Russell Robertson
17 - Cameron Bruce, Brent Moloney
14 - Adem Yze
10 - Colin Sylvia
9 - Brock McLean, Aaron Davey
7 - Ryan Ferguson
6 - Clint Bizzell
5 - Jared Rivers, David Neitz, Jeff White
4 - Alistair Nicholson, Daniel Ward, Phil Read
3 - James McDonald, Brad Miller, Nathan Brown, Russell Robertson, Nathan Carroll
2 - Paul Wheatley, Matthew Whelan

Fast forward to the 2nds today and Colin Sylvia went arse over, did his shoulder and is probably out for the season. Yeh, great. Thanks for that. Did somebody root a witch in the Junction Oval changerooms? Amongst the best in the 2's were Nicholson (yes, I'll have him back), Godfrey (just say no) and Williams (just say IF YOU PICK HIM I'M GOING TO DRIVE A BUS INTO THE CLUB YOU BASTARDS). One more week of slop and I'm calling for them to play the kids - Nick Smith kicked 6 for the Sandy 2nd's and we may as well give him more senior games soon before he turns into another draft failure.

I haven't turned on Daniher yet, as everyone else seems to be doing, but the next few weeks are going to be crucial. Is he going to do something wild and revolutionary or is he going to go back to the hasbeens and play Rigoni, Williams, Heffernan and Godfrey in an attempt to turn back the clock to 2002. Ten weeks ago I was talking him up as somebody who could be the Premiership coach, and apart from the last five weeks of 2003 I've supported him 100%, but now I'm starting to wonder what sort of changes another coach would make given the chance. Has he run out of good ideas? Is it time for a change. I'm starting to think that the answer may be yes. Doesn't matter, he's got a contract until the end of '07 anyway so unless he walks we'll presumably follow the usual scenario of having a top year in '06, seeing him cop a contract renewal and then being complete horseshit in '07.

Next week: Adelaide at Football Park. Goodnight, thanks for playing and it's been emotional. The only hope we have is that it's low scoring and we can fall over the line in the biggest fluke ever. Changes? Fuck I don't know...

OUT: Everyone
IN: Allen Jakovich, Phil Gilbert, John Howat, Jeff Hilton, Darren Kowal, Matthew Febey, Sean Wight, Jay Viney, Max Walker, The Pope, Condaleeza Rice, Gough Whitlam, Lizzy Birdsworth and Nudge from Hey Dad.

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