Sunday 26 July 2009

Capital Punishment II

Last week I was ready to come on here and say that the moment we won our fourth game and the tanking shutters really went up that I was going to stop doing reviews. How I wish I'd said "at three quarter time of the Geelong game", because today was one of the most horrifically shit matches of all time. To think there were probably people who went to the trouble of spending their hard earned to travel interstate and watch it. Though not that many if the crowd was any sort of indication.

Ended watching the game in relative peace and quiet at the Cricket Club Hotel on Clarendon Street. Was told to head for the Limerick as its a "footy pub". Walk in at 12.59 to see Fox Sports News on the big screen with no volume but Bonnie Tyler's "It's A Heartache" blaring out on the speakers. Mmm classy. So I ask old mate behind the bar if they're putting the game on and he goes "oh yes of course" and nods at the smallest TV in history. With sound? "No, I don't think so". Well sir, you can stick your Bonnie Tyler Greatest Hits CD in your back passage (be careful, Total Eclipse of the Heart is very long) and spin it like a 45. The CCH, on the other hand, had six screens showing the footy and one with Fashion TV (!?). With audio too thank christ.

The game? Oh shit must we? It was so awful I can barely bother to recount it. Not only did I have to sit through it once but then I came on here and lost a massive chunk of what I'd written about it when my browser crashed. Next time Blogger claims they automatically save your work every minute I suggest spitting in their face. What I will say is that it was the sort of game that internationals would watch and wonder what was wrong with us for following it. In fact some of it was so bad that it was almost worse than watching Rugby Union. The Swans weren't particuarly good in the first quarter, but we were abysmal. There were a handful of people trying hard but when all that saves you from a fourth goalless first quarter of the year (when did we become Fitzroy?) is a scrappy kick from a last minute goalmouth scramble then you know you're in trouble.

Meanwhile if we're going to go down like an Iranian airliner over the next few weeks can we at least throw Aaron Davey back into the forward line? We all swooned over his super efficient delivery and general backline shenanigans at the start of the year but it's not adding anything at the moment. At least give us some excitement in the last few weeks. His first quarter today was one of the worst I've ever seen him play - put him where the action generally isn't and see if you can spark some life into that forward line. It's an absolute joke that he managed to get declared BOG in this article. I hate match reporters with a passion. Including myself.

The second term opened far more positively. Newton and Miller were the best duo since Hall and Oates when they didn't have the ball, but the moment they got it they turned into Cheech and Chong. Their chase, tackle, marking and general presence was great but the shots they missed were awful. It's not the first time either. Both of them played fiercly but unfortunately a key attribute of being a forward is the ability to put oval shaped ball between the two sticks in the middle. Neither of them has quite grasped it yet. Do we even have a goalkicking coach? What do they talk about? Juice has been doing the same thing for three years and has gotten no better or worse - surely somebody has to sit him down and try to work out what's wrong with his action. Knowing us we've probably got Earl Spalding giving him tutorials.

Eventually the Jurrahcane - who spent the first quarter going near and trying to lay the ball off - marked and goaled to get us back into it. He then proceeded to go down in a tackle and momentarily look like he'd necked himself before coming back to life. Spent most of the third quarter on the bench and was pretty much out of the game from then on. Luckily he's not seriously injured though because it was just the sort of tackle that usually ends in somebody's shin bone sticking out of their leg. Great work by the commentary team to spend two minutes wondering aloud why he wasn't picked up in the National Draft and was allowed to slide to the rookie draft. Nobody bothered to mention that he wasn't even nominated for the National. Given that one of the commentators - Pickering - is a player manager I'm going to have to guess that he doesn't have any interest in the Melbourne forward line.

Speaking of commentators it was right up there in B-Grade teams today. Leigh Colbert on the boundary was the only one who spoke any sense. Russell wasn't as bad as usual, but that still puts him in the bottom 5% of humans, Pickering was full of shit and Danny Frawley works best on the radio where he can be the Brownless-esque butt of jokes for four quarters.

So despite some positive signs in that quarter by the end of the second we were still 2.6 and staring down yet another putrid score. The options were just abysmal. They'd mark, play on and then realise that nobody was there. They'd mark and miss a target from 20m away. Poor Matthew Bate couldn't get a ball above his ankles if his life depended on it. Forget the tank, this was just pure slop. On a more positive note, at the other end of the ground Morton was doing a number on Adam Goodes. Bartram was also having a good one. I did like McKenzie in his limited opportunties, and I think Valenti is worth persisting with until the end of the year.

Third quarter saw Miller miss another sitter before finally getting one. Davey managed to redeem himself with one as well to make it at least officially interesting. The commentators were treating it like they were calling a sprint finish in the Tour De France - "THE CROWD ARE ON THE EDGE OF THEIR SEATS" screamed Russell as the camera clearly showed that what crowd there was were most certainly not. The kid in the Essendon beanie behind the goals said it all.

Foolishly I started playing the pub golf arcade game at 3/4 time and spent the first few minutes of the last looking back over my shoulder between chipping out of the rough. Every time I looked over we were copping another score. Wunderbar. Finally Newton got one at the 14 minute mark and we were some sort of chance. Then he got another one and botched it. Is it wrong that I really didn't care?

Ironically Whelan floated forward and got the last with a set shot that put most of the forwards in our team to shame. That cut the margin to 12 but the Swans were never going to let this one go - suffice to say they didn't. F'ing whatever. I was more concerned with trying to sell the concept that somehow Whelan will avoid the senior player massacre at the end of the year. I love Robbo (in a rugged "often disappointed by" sense) but I'm willing to boot him out the door at the end of the year if it means keeping Wheels.

I'm sure some other shit happened. Does anyone care anymore?

Crowd Watch
If you were the ACT opposition leader (yes, they have a parliament!) would you not walk straight in tomorrow morning and demand to know how much that cost the taxpayer? Let's assume all the remaining Sydney fans in Sydney travelled - that's 2000 people, and I'll give 150 travelling Melbourne fans tops. And we got paid an absolute fortune for it. Works for me, but I'd certainly be putting my hand up and asking questions if I was a taxpayer. It's no wonder they want a chunk of the new West Sydney team if this is all they're getting. I doubt more than a handful of people were watching on TV either, so any claims of 'exposure' for Canberra are a farce.

Did you know the Canberra ABC channel is 666AM? That's my favourite capital fact. You might also have noticed that the ads around the boundary were the worst since Anker Concreting and Lurline Liquor took out contracts to advertise at Casey Fields. My favourite was Batemans Bay Caravans.

And didn't the AFL do a great job scheduling this in "Rivalry Round"? Notwithstanding the fact that it's the biggest farce of a round ever because they don't have enough rivalries to go around, who decided to play it at a neutral venue? If Kevin Dyson and Wayne "Moose" Henwood aren't going to appear and present a trophy to somebody then you can just shut the door on the way out as far as I'm concerned.

Whatever happened to that once a year ANZAC Day night clash we were going to have with the Swans at Homebush? Lasted one year, we actually won and it got put in the bin. Another great fixturing moment in AFL history.

2009 Allen Jakovich Medal votes

5 - Cale Morton
4 - Brent Moloney
3 - Matthew Warnock
2 - Clint Bartram
1 - Ricky Petterd

Apologies to Bate, Cheney, Jurrah, Martin, McDonald, McKenzie, Miller, Newton and Rivers


27 - Brent Moloney
23 - Aaron Davey
18 - Colin Sylvia
16 - Brad Green
15 - Cameron Bruce
13 - Matthew Bate, Nathan Jones, Cale Morton
12 - Stefan Martin, Brock McLean, Mark Jamar (LEADER: Strawbs O'Dwyer Medal for Ruckman of the Year)
10 - James Frawley (LEADER: 2009 Marcus Seecamp Medal for Defender of the Year)
9 - Jared Rivers
8 - Matthew Warnock,Jack Grimes (LEADER: 2009 Jeff Hilton Medal for Rookie of the Year)
7 - Liam Jurrah, Brad Miller, Ricky Petterd
5 - Kyle Cheney, Russell Robertson
4 - Jamie Bennell
3 - Matthew Whelan
2 - James McDonald, Paul Johnson, Clint Bartram
1 - Lynden Dunn

Next Week
Richmond @ the MCG. A reminder that I'm only going to be there for the first three quarters so if you want to throw your hat into the ring to do a guest report (and as you can see it's oh so much fun) then let me know ASAP via supermercado AT

Final Thoughts
My heart says "WTF WAS THAT? JUST WIN YOU SWINE!" Head says "Well lost guys". Great system we've got going here.

It could be worse. We could be Freo. Wait, what do you mean they won? Shit.

Saturday 18 July 2009

Back to life, back to reality

Well, let's be honest that was one of the stupider footballing expeditions I've ever taken. Sleeping in a car in Brisbane was one thing, and we all remember how five hours in Adelaide airport almost caused a nervous breakdown but think for a minute what I expected to achieve by going to Geelong today. We were always going to get smashed, it was always going to be freezing cold - and possibly raining - and the ground was undoubtedly going to be filled with a majority of Cletus the Slack Jawed Yokel lookalikes missing at least one row of teeth. In the end we managed to avoid getting completely destroyed, and the projected Hurricane Bertha rain failed to come, but everything else ticked the boxes as you'd expect. And there was further comical suprises. Got a 16 game membership? Well get it out and have a look at what it says on the back. "Admits to 11 home games & 5 Vic away games". Now, the last time I looked we don't play any away games in Echuca or Stawell so they must be referring to Geelong. Apparently not. The card wouldn't scan and I was told that it wasn't a "designated Melbourne away game". So not only were we going to get tonked but I got to pay $20 for the privelege. How joyful. Any chance the club could let us know what is and what isn't a 'designated' game? Changing the wording on the back of the card might help as well. Unless it was just some sort of "milk the visitors" ploy by Geelong. You decide. Inside and it was much as you'd expect. I hadn't been on the terraces in Geelong for a few years after scoring seats from a Geelong fan the last couple of times we'd played there. Nothing has changed. There are still a lot of interesting units wandering around down there. My favourite was the guy in a duffle coat that had the official AFL #29 on the back. Speaking of fashion they were having some sort of 150th birthday celebrations which involved every single person in the ground supposedly putting a giant white garbage bag on so they could take an aerial photo and flog it at the club shop for $10 a crack. As I walked in one of the of the people handing them out tried to give me one. I politely declined and she was genuinely shocked. "But it's a whiteout" she said. I just shrugged and pointed to my Melbourne jumper. What the hell do I care? Luckily for them the white garbage bag uptake rate was huge. I'd say 95% of the Geelong fans in my area put their dignity to one side and went for the white look. Even more interestingly once the photo had been taken they all left them on. Threat of rain notwithstanding I think that people were genuinely enjoying it. Was white, thin and crinkly the massive fashion statement that the people of Corio have been calling out for? And if you think that's strange then consider the fact that most of the people undercover kept them on as well. They're a different sort of human that's for sure. The game itself can get stuffed. We lost the toss and had to kick into a 5 goal wind in the first quarter and if it wasn't all over before that it was then. Not surprisingly a team that has won more games this year than we have in three found it easier to score with a wild breeze than we did against it. The first ten minutes wasn't too bad. We were getting beaten all over the ground but managing to keep it respectable on the scoreboard. Despite that you could see we were in big trouble when Matthew Bate had a ping from 45m and despite doing everything right couldn't make the distance. They went down the other end, kicked a goal and opened the floodgates. 7 goals to zip at quarter time and it had the hallmarks of something ugly if we didn't get it right in the second. Reminded me a bit of the Casey/Frankston game last week when the Dolphins didn't get a goal in the third quarter with a fierce wind and went on to get hammered in the last term kicking into it. We at least broke even in the second, though Geelong were hardly playing at 100% themselves. Bate and Jurrah were at lively in a forward line that was doing little or nothing else, Jamar was beating their 12th line ruck combo but not getting it to our players and Moloney and Grimes were fighting hard in the middle. Robertson, Bruce, McLean, McDonald etc.. were hardly seen. Jones killed Ablett in the first quarter but couldn't hold him in the second and he started to run riot. Racked up 40 disposals for the day despite spending plenty of time at full-forward. Shows how well we were going. After kicking four last week Petterd barely went near the forward line - what a wonderful world. It could have gotten very ugly in the third quarter. Having copped seven without reply into the breeze in the opening quarter what were we supposed to think was going to happen an hour later when the Cats had really gotten into the game? Surprisingly though we were pretty good. Kicked a couple of goals, did some decent things around the ground and managed to hold them from totally destroying us. In fact it was going surprisingly well early on when we had three goals in a row before Hawkins got a mystifying free kick just for lifting his fat arse into the air and his gimme goal put them back on track. Fourth quarter? Don't ask me, I went home. Shamefully the earliest I've walked out since we got tonked by St. Kilda three or four years ago. Sounded alright on the radio but I'd rather be warm in a car listening to SEN than freezing my norks off on a terrace with bumpkins listening to history's worst football coverage on K-Rock. Them Nothing I saw today convinced me that they're going to win the flag. We dragged them down to our level a bit, and the return of Steve Johnson would be handy, but what's going on with Mooney and Hawkins? Have two people ever benefitted more from playing like trash in a great team? I don't think Hawkins would even get a game for us at the moment. He's in the Juice Newton Club for people who have novelty nicknames that get them more publicity than they deserve. Murder on the Airwaves Yes, K-Rock. What was I thinking not getting an AM radio to take so I could listen to SEN? Instead I subjected myself to the ugliest and least informative commentary of all time. Should have known what I was getting myself in for right off the bat when the first ad I heard was for Wombat Gully Plant Farms.. with Jamie and Ruth. What the hell? What happened to Chris and Marie? Can you really franchise out the idea of being a lavender, plant raising 'couple'. What a wonderful world we live in. Err, anyway. Then there's the Andrew Bews, Tim McGrath and some other freaks coverage. Absolutely abysmal. I don't know if you've ever listened to them but let me tell you that any of us could walk straight into that commentary box and fit right in. You don't need to know anything about game itself. Hell even I could do it and this site proves that I don't know squat. Actually it'd be a good fit, you only need to know how to call one set of players and don't have to add any tactical analysis whatsoever. Being completely biased to the 'home team' is understandable. You're looking after business in a one team town, but I can't understand why you'd listen to them even if you were a Geelong fan. The only obvious reason to tune in was to find out what was happening at the other end of the ground - and even then I'm not confident they were getting it right considering the amount of players they called wrong down our end. Quoth my own post on Big Footy regarding their ludicrous attempts at explaining why Melbourne were such a bad side, In their token attempts to justify why they thought we'd lose by 120 points one of the idiots gives the following analysis which I'll paraphrase Senior players aren't good enough (randomly Green, Bate and Rivers are the ones they name which makes no sense whatsoever) and they're deliberately playing for themselves and cutting the youngsters out of it to save themselves. I take it they saw Robertson got dropped once for not chasing and came to that conclusion. Ridiculous names to drop and ludicrous analysis from people who admittedly have no idea what's going on at our club. I don't know why you'd even bother pretending to analyse anyone else when the whole point of your coverage is to talk about the home town team. When Bate had his first shot on goal he was "almost directly in front" for god's sake (for the record he was almost standing on the number 50). It's a sad indictment on them that last year when they had John Barnes as the special comments man he was more informative than their entire team today combined - and he's about as useful a communicator as Damien Monkhorst. Just stick to verbally fellating Hawkins for getting a kick and playing 'hillarious' sound effects you arseholes. Almost made Rex Hunt seem entertaining. Ironically the K-Rock van outside the stadium had the slogan "Saving you from crap radio" on it. Makes you wonder what other criminally bad stations they have there. At one point that retard Bews tried to claim that we were getting a better run from the umpires because we were so shit. That was the point where I had to stop listening or I'd lose the plot. It's a shame they're too pov to have an SMS open line like a real station because I had two phones (I'm neither a drug dealer or a doctor) and was ready to go coco-bananas on both of them just abusing these washed up ex-footballer hacks and their shitful town. There were comedy sound effects during the quarter-time 'analysis' for god's sake. Awful. Simply awful. I'd voluntarily sit through a Hunt/Schwarz/Blight/Walls commentary team for twelve hours straight than listen to that half ever again. Speaking of media coverage I see Channel 10 had Kellie Underwood doing their call. Never heard her commentate so I'm not going to give any sort of analysis there but am I right in predicting there's going to be an avalanche of talkback/internet angst about it? The usual ludicrous claim levelled at female callers is that they don't understand the game because they've never played it. Which is fine if you remember those great sides of the 80's where Mike Sheahan got the tap to Quarters who roosted it long in the forward line for Eddie McGuire to take a big grab on Anthony Hudson's head. Now, Caroline Wilson we know is full of shit but it's got nothing to do with her gender. Just look at Patrick Smith - you don't need to be female to be an ignorant [Snip! - Legal Ed] Do you think the netball fraternity have the same issues with Luke Darcy? Crowd Watch Today was pretty much what I'd expected going to Adelaide before it turned out that Port fans were the most boring people ever born. Having all the fans of one side in one section with a smattering of opposition supporters and you get to see average humans enjoying the advantage of majority rule. I just can't imagine most of the Colac Tractor Driver faction that were present yelling out the same stupid comments if the crowd were 50/50. Which is a shame, because we'd all like to see a few more quality brawls in the stands. Personally I don't care, yell out whatever you like if it floats your boat but if you're going to do it at a Melbourne/Freo game with 9 people around you then at least have the coconuts to do it when you're in the middle of 30,000 Essendon fans at Etihad. God knows why you'd bother to read this if you weren't a Melbourne fan anyway, but replace with appropriate examples if you support somebody else. There are, of course, the people who do just spray random shit for four quarters no matter what the game is. In reality they should probably all be thrown on a large bonfire, but due to their commitment to not just doing cheap comic work when they've got the numbers in the crowd I'm going to support them. Where's that float in the VB ad? We want "PEOPLE WHO MAKE IDIOTS OF THEMSELVES FOR 22 ROUNDS" and we want them now. Possibly in front of a firing squad. I imagine the same thing would happen if we were in the majority. It's just human nature to be cockheads on masse. Hence why I'm never putting my hands up to sit in the reserved seats. Not only do you run the risk of being plonked next to a goofball for the entire season but I should think you'd probably lose faith in your own supporters after about five minutes. 2009 Allen Jakovich Medal Not much in the way of deserved votes here, but you've got to give them to somebody. 5 - Moloney 4 - Bate 3 - Morton 2 - Jurrah 1 - Grimes Apologies to Bartram, Dunn, Frawley, Green, Jamar, Jones, Petterd. Leaderboard Oh look it's a co-leader at the top. The way Davey is going he's got no chance. We called Steven Brassell at Luxbet for his odds for the winner. Unfortunately he told us to piss off so we just made our own up, $2.30 - Moloney $5 - Davey, Sylvia $7.50 - Green, Bruce $11 - Jones $12 - Bate, McLean $100 - Jamar $200 - Martin, Frawley Jamar will walk the Strawbs O'Dwyer in a major upset, and Frawley, Rivers and Grimes are battling hard for the Seecamp. Just a reminder that Martin has been disqualified from Seecamp contention due to not playing the majority of his football as a defender. Grimes could take home the defender of the year gong but still lose Rookie of the Year with Jurrah having picked up plenty of votes recently and both Cheney and Bennell still within striking distance. I'm also sending Moloney straight to the top of my 2010 captaincy market. Giving it to his ex-supporters after kicking a goal when we're a million points down is the clincher. 23 - Brent Moloney, Aaron Davey 18 - Colin Sylvia 16 - Brad Green 15 - Cameron Bruce 13 - Matthew Bate, Nathan Jones 12 - Stefan Martin, Brock McLean, Mark Jamar (LEADER: Strawbs O'Dwyer Medal for Ruckman of the Year) 10 - James Frawley (LEADER: 2009 Marcus Seecamp Medal for Defender of the Year) 9 - Jared Rivers 8 - Jack Grimes (LEADER: 2009 Jeff Hilton Medal for Rookie of the Year), Cale Morton 7 - Liam Jurrah, Brad Miller 5 - Matthew Warnock, Kyle Cheney, Russell Robertson 4 - Jamie Bennell 3 - Matthew Whelan 2 - James McDonald, Paul Johnson 1 - Lynden Dunn Choose Your Own Trade Adventure What would you swap for Tom Hawkins, a) An empty chip wrapper b) A used $5 MCG hot dog without mustard c) The Ark of the Covenant d) Darren Cuthbertson e) None of the above I swear Brad Miller will sit down to watch the replay tonight and throw a brick at his television. He must wonder how somebody worse than he is keeps playing for a side in the top 2 while he's getting interviewed by Phil Cleary on the ABC. Lottery Fever Has anyone ever won anything out of the Melbourne FC lotto syndicate? I certainly haven't, and I've been giving them my money all year. It claims that anything you win will get mailed to you. I'm suggesting that somebody is pocketing my $16 somewhere and sending out numbers they made up. Procedural Announcements With the tankfest and the necessary dropping of all wins after the next one I've completely lost interest in this season. For that reason we need guest reporters for the Richmond and Fremantle games. Usually I refuse to do any sort of work on the weekends during footy season no matter how lucrative but during the Freo game I'm taking the money and running. And I'll only be there for half - maybe three quarters - of the Tigers match due to foolishly agreeing to go to the Australian Premier of Inglorious Basterds at 4pm that day. Do I not deserve to see some horrendous violence that isn't of the scoreboard variety? Comment, email me (supermercado at or give us some twitter @demonblog if you want to put your hand up. Otherwise there will be ¾ of reportage from one game, anything I notice from listening to the radio on the other and a top 5 taken from the post-match BigFooty votes thread. Save us from the threat of democracy and put your hand up. Next Week Sydney in Canberra. Well, they'll beat us. What else do you need to know? They're not much chop compared to the last few years but can you honestly see us getting up? And for god's sake I don't care if I've got his number on my jumper or not but can we play Martin in the 2's so he can work on being a forward? He did alright in the ruck today - often against slop chip-in ruckmen like Hawkins - but 0 kicks, 6 handballs says it all really. He's a freaking defender, and if you're going to try and convert him into something else don't do it against the best team in the competition. Gah. Final Thoughts The City of Greater Geelong has just joined Queensland on my list of places to avoid going back to. Postscript I'm sure there are a lot of normal people in Geelong. All of them stayed home today.

Sunday 12 July 2009

Here I am! Rock you like a Jurrahcane!

Who would have thought that headline would have gotten a run so quickly? Especially since I've been sitting on it ever since the great man made his debut.

Now, I must start by pointing out that I had a really bad feeling about this game. Having been sick for the last month (perhaps it's time to see a doctor?) and waking up this morning feeling like death I was wildly unenthusiastic about today. Then I got to the G, bought chips and spilt half of them across the top deck of the Olympic Stand. More importantly Port had been in decent form and were surely going to beat us like the proverbial red-headed stepchild (Bate or Cheney - you decide!) Two in a row was far too much to ask for.

The stat on the screen before the match showing that we were 6-1 against them at the MCG raised an eyebrow. Lest we forget that horrific day we lost to them and I threw the biggest spaz of my life. Ugly stuff. But that was back when we were just five or six straight losses removed from a 2nd week of the finals performance. We didn't understand what had gone wrong so suddenly. Now, two years later, we're seasoned victims - used to being beaten by everybody. It's basically the sporting equivalent of the Stockholm Syndrome. Now we just expect to lose.

Then strange things happened. We actually played.. well. My traditional first goalkicker bet Matty Bate kicked the first goal - in the week where I didn't have a bet - and The 'Cane chipped in with one as well. If you choose to ignore Daniel Bell's ludicrous turnover for a goal then it was undoubtedly a quarter of beauty. Jurrah had three by the end of it, Jamar was smashing it out of the centre and Port were self-destructing at a rapid rate. They truly were a putrid outfit today.

Having said that they're a pretty putrid outfit at the best of times. Look away now if you're a Port fan because it's time for some home truths. Your nickname is gash, your song is like something specially written for a primary school musical and your away jumper is even worse than the silver monstrosity that we sported for a few years. Even my usually placid mother almost punched on with a Port fan a few years ago. I will admit that I went for them in a grand final but let's face it that was only because they were standing in the way of Brisbane winning four in a row. In fact the only thing I actually like about Port Adelaide is Choco Williams - mainly because he fits into my fetish for coaches who may also be serial killers - and they don't even like him. It's not all their fault though - Collingwood barring them from wearing their real jumper doesn't help. Hardly means that putting some white and teal abortion on instead is a sensible idea. Pointless enterprise all around.

Err, anyway - then there's the match. How good was Lynden Dunn's dive to draw the free on Chad Cornes in the second quarter? He was falling over before Chadwick even touched him. Not surprisingly Mr. Cornes mentioned rather vociferously that he disagreed with the decision - and hello it's a 50 and a certain goal. WIN! I was pretty impressed by Dunn - he's certainly been harshly done by having been marooned at Casey for the last month. I'm even more impressed by his acting.

After the champagne Hollywood performance to set up the Dunn goal, one of the few men in the league angrier than him - Brogan - got one back for Port before THE 'CANE marked again for his fourth... And missed the easiest shot yet. After all you can't be a cult figure if you don't mess up the easy stuff sometime.

The tale for the rest of the half was that we'd go inside 50 five times and finally get a goal, only for Port to get a cheap one straight away to peg us back. It's amazing that we were playing so well (relatively speaking) and they were playing so poorly but we couldn't jump more than two or three goals in front. Having said that we did cop one of the most ludicrous goals in history at the end of the second quarter. Witness David Rodan running a mile too far, then getting tackled, THEN THROWING IT and not getting pinged for any of them. Did the umpire get so confused at what signal to make that he forgot to do any of them? Tredrea goalled from it and you could stand to feel slightly persecuted. Then I remembered Dunn's dive and the cheapy that Robertson got at the start when he didn't make the distance.

So, half time and we were looking pretty good. Port, though, were well down and if they turned it on we might have been trouble. After all they're not a bad team. Rubbish sides always kill themselves by not putting a good side away when they have the opportunity, then getting run over when the better team realises what's going on. Fourteen minutes into the third quarter we were 30 points in front and that theory was being mocked. The impressive Petterd got his second before the man that some are trying to label The Cougar, but who we know only as THE JURRAHCANE used his gigantic octopus arms to take a mark on the goal-line and slot one from a rubbish angle for his fourth.

My boy the Stefan Martin Experience didn't have such a great one. His highest and lowest moment came at the same time when he took a contested mark on the 50, stepped around his opponent, ran to 40m with an open goal in front of him and sprayed it. He did alright in the ruck without bringing anything special but I'm worried that he's going to be squeezed out of the side by both the backline and - shockingly - the forwards - looking good. He certainly hasn't done himself many favours as a forward in the last couple of weeks with some very wonky kicking. If we're going to drop him again can he play a full 2nd's game in the forward line? Maybe even as FF in the Casey 2's? It's not a reflection that he's not good enough, just that he needs to play against some lesser backlines and hone his craft rather than trying to do it in the AFL.

I'm sure that even after our win last week somebody somewhere was saying "they don't know how to win", and maybe they had a point. On either side of the SME's sidestep and slop they kicked three goals to get themselves back into it. Thankfully Robertson, who had been completely outshone by the Jurrah/Petterd show, chipped in for one at the end to give us some breathing room.

Speaking of farcical errors what about Cale Morton's 5m sideways pass straight to a Port player? Absolutely abysmal! He was pretty good otherwise but that's the sort of shit that ends up in highlight reels.

And yes as always the last quarter of a win (YES, A WIN!) was filled with tension. One day we're going to come out and smash somebody in the 4th quarter and you'll know that we're back in town. After playing a great game on Tredrea all day Matthew Warnock fell apart in the last quarter and cost a couple of goals. 14 minutes in the margin was back to seven and things were looking very wobbly indeed. Mark freaking Jamar - playing another corker of a game - marked inside 50 but handed it off to Moloney who missed.

The highlight of my day was the insane lengths the Russian goes to in order to avoid having to kick the ball. The fact that he doesn't even have a shot at goal says it all. I hereby predict that we will never see him have more than five kicks in a game. Today it was 3 kicks and 16 handballs. I like it when a man knows his limitations. You're a ruckman, not Gary Ablett. Get rid of the thing, don't try and pinpoint a pass 40m down the line. Paul Johnson please take note.

Petterd kicked the winner - on a pass from guess who? - in what was undoubtedly his best game ever. Another performance like that and I might have to do subtle edits on the old posts that questioned him as a forward. Any eating of words that involves something playing well and not the other way around is worth it.

Still, even with the margin back out over three goals they were done with yet. Krakouer missed one he should have got, Tredrea another and then with just over a minute left Brett Ebert botched a pretty good chance to bring them within a kick. We tried to run the clock down again, and once again weren't good enough to actually execute it. Luckily they torched their chance and we got away with it for a win.

Relief at the siren. I'm not one for singing the song and going bananas when you win a game to go from 16th to 15th, but inside I was pretty pleased with the way it went. It was good to see the fans that did show up with a smile on their face for once. In years to come there will be about 30,000 people trying to claim that they sat through these years - we did and we should get a freaking medal for it. When I can't get a seat for the 2016 Grand Final because some teeny bopper has shown up in Round 22 and porked one of the players there will be a riot.

2009 Allen Jakovich Medal Votes
5 - Cameron Bruce
4 - Liam Jurrah
3 - Ricky Petterd
2 - Brad Green
1 - Mark Jamar

Apologies to Bate, Davey, Dunn, Grimes, Jetta, McLean, Moloney, Rivers, Warnock, Wheatley

23 - Aaron Davey
18 - Brent Moloney, Colin Sylvia
16 - Brad Green
15 - Cameron Bruce
13 - Nathan Jones
12 - Stefan Martin, Brock McLean, Mark Jamar (LEADER: Strawbs O'Dwyer Medal for Ruckman of the Year)
10 - James Frawley (LEADER: 2009 Marcus Seecamp Medal for Defender of the Year)
9 - Matthew Bate, Jared Rivers
7 - Brad Miller, Jack Grimes (LEADER: 2009 Jeff Hilton Medal for Rookie of the Year)
6 - Cale Morton, Ricky Petterd,
5 - Matthew Warnock, Kyle Cheney, Russell Robertson, Liam Jurrah
4 - Jamie Bennell
3 - Matthew Whelan
2 - James McDonald, Paul Johnson
1 - Lynden Dunn

Crowd Watch
Where was everybody? I know West Coast have more fans locally, and there were quite a few travelling, but it hardly explains a 7k drop-off in attendance. Has it got something to do with Sunday? Or did everyone just think "surely we're not going to win again" and sit at home listening to the radio instead.

Welcome to the 21st century, you can listen to your radio AND go to the game. Don't make Jimmy write a cheque, he's still ill.

Koaching Korner
Any win is good news when you've been last for two and a half years like us, but I'm more happy for Bailey than anybody else. Like an idiot I started to question the masterplan when we were being beaten pillar to post a few weeks ago. He's gone through a lot of shit in the last 2.5 seasons and deserves a couple of wins in a row.

Although, with due respect to his injury, whoever decided to select Daniel Bell should be dragged out to write a public apology. I'm assuming Bennell was injured as he didn't play for Casey but my god can we not play him again? If the idea today was to put an Adelaide boy in the trade shop window for Port then it didn't work.

I didn't mind Wheatley today. He botched it a couple of times but was generally pretty cool in the contest and layed a couple of decent tackles. I don't object playing him for the rest of the year as long as it's clear that he's not going to be on the list next season.

The VFA Report
The team formerly known as Springvale demolished Frankston yesterday. Frankston, however, are about as much use as the Diamond Valley Under 9's so it's not a great form guide. The week before they hammered Bendigo who are so bad that even they lost to Frankston, so it's hard to get a line on where everyone is.

Miller and Newton dominated up-front but it really was like taking candy from a baby. The way our forward line played today I wouldn't expect to see either of them again anytime soon. The only question is whether Miller plays next year or we try to flog him to Sydney as a half-replacement for Barry Hall. I don't dislike the guy but god forbid we can wrench a second rounder out of them then take it and do the biggest runner since OJ Simpson.

September Watch
There's nothing worse than people thinking that just because you follow a Victorian club that you want one to win the flag. There's nothing worse because then we have to hear about it. That's why from now on I'll be punting Adelaide home - they're our best chance to send the flag elsewhere and not have to hear about it again. Up the Crows - they've got everything that Port doesn't. Decent song and decent colours. Still not sure why you've have a state called the Crow Eaters and a team called the Crows though. Does South Australia eat Adelaide? Explain that. No wonder State of Origin got the arse.

The only exception to Premiership Export rule is the Bulldogs whom I will cop as premier. St. Kilda on the other hand must crash and burn.

Encylopedia Titanica
Demon Wiki - open for business. Get amongst it. Ridiculously under construction at the moment but if you can get on and add a couple of pages then you are assured of going straight to information heaven when you die.

Tank Talk
Now it gets interesting. Let's just assume for a moment that we're going to go hell for leather for Pick 1 and either 2 or 3. Let's assume the Shane Valenti at Full Forward and Jordie McKenzie in the ruck angle is going occur. We're now off the bottom and have one win more in us before the shutters come down. However in the next few weeks we play more than winnable games against Richmond, North and Freo as well as an unlikely but not impossible clash with Sydney in Canberra.

I loathe the AFL for the situation they're putting us in. Thanks for the potential free #1 pick and all but why am I considering cheering against my own team. In what sort of world are we 5pts in front 28 minutes into the last quarter next week, about to pull off the upset of the year but still thinking "Well, this is going to stuff us up for the future"?

I'll be satisfied to get one more win but still finish above Freo and get Picks 1 and 3. That would require them to win one more and for us to beat them, or vice versa. Richmond and North I can take losing to, but I don't think we can possibly accept dropping a game to the Dockers at the MCG. How about this year we don't give up a 10 goal lead at half time though?

But on the other hand I'm of the opinion that if you can't get a decent player in the top 5 then you may as well be Freo. It's the extra pick and the ultra-hype around Tom Scully that make me nervous about advocating going out and winning five. I guess I have to shamefully back down and admit that as much as I hate myself for it I'm actually calling for the tank now.

I feel dirty.

Laughing Stock League
It's back! For the first time all year we're off the bottom in every ladder. Here's the LSL table

1-15 - Every football team in every code in the country
16 - Freo by a mile.

And fair enough too. How do we keep finishing below those slops?

Next Week
If I'd told you six weeks ago that we'd be going to Geelong with two straight losses to play them with two wins in a row of our own you'd have had me sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

Doesn't mean we're going to win, or even get close, because they'll be in a fearsome mood but still bizarre nonetheless. Demonblog will be there, probably standing on the steps behind the goals and wondering why the hell I drove there for an hour just to watch us get humped.

Final Thoughts
At some point in the future we're going to have THE JURRAHCANE and THE CELEBRATOR in the same forward line. That stands every possible chance of being immense.

Sunday 5 July 2009

One for the boss

First things first, a random Jim Stynes anecdote not actually featuring the man himself. It was the late 80's and I was in Grade 2. Somehow it came to my attention that the great man himself was working as a teacher at a school near where I lived. So straight away I march in to see my mother and demand to be traded to this school so that I may be taught by a legend.

Farcically enough she actually takes this seriously and tries to enrol me. Unfortunately to get in you have to survive a 'family interview' with their head honcho priest and all around keeper of the religious flame. And no, this doesn't end up in a courtroom and years of therapy. Anyway, we were already well in trouble when we walked in and he realised she was a single parent. Then he started off with the Jebus Appreciation Test (think George Costanza trying to be Latvian Orthodox) and we fall apart completely. "When did you last go to church?" he asked. "Err..." we paused. And the old goose went right off "You can't come here if you're not willing to go to church every week! I want to see you in the front row on Sunday". Err, sure why not. Will you be doing magic tricks? Not surprisingly I was absolutely terrified and refused to go anywhere near the school or that bloke ever again - and was therefore denied the chance to have a Brownlow Medallist as my Grade 2 sports teacher.

There's no doubt that Jim Stynes commands respect. His is one of the most inspirational stories in Australian sporting history, and something we're never going to see the likes of again. How many people would dare to go to a press conference to tell the world you've got cancer and not only raise the 1987 'incident' as a key part of the dialogue but also reveal the jumper that you wore that very day. Most people would have taken that #37 out and thrown it into the sea two days later.

No matter what people think of our club, and don't fool yourself there's a lot of people who hate us for no apparent reason, the messages of support from throughout the footballing world for Jim throughout the week proves that he's the sort of guy who transcends the usual football boganry and commands respect all round. He's highly unlikely to be reading this - after all if anyone from the club did I'd have been sued about 3 years ago - but it goes without saying that we wish him all the best in his recovery.

I can't for the life of me remember how to change the colors of this page. So instead of making it green in tribute, here's a picture of the first other green thing I could think of.

Another wildcard Stynes memory was being on a family holiday in Sydney on Brownlow night 1991 and cracking the sads enormously when I found out they weren't showing it on TV. The first thing the next morning I rushed out to the newsagent to buy the Melbourne papers and confirm the suspicion that he was going to piss it in. During that first year when I really got into football Stynes had as much to do with it as one Mr. A Jakovich of no fixed address.

Anyway, on with the footy. It had been so long since we'd played another bottom of the barrel side (Division Four = Us, Richmond, Freo, WCE) that we'd started to believe the publicity about how awful we were. Yeah, we're pretty bad but fark we've played some handy teams in the last few weeks - the chance to get the 2nd worst travelling side in the competition (oh go on, have a guess at who is first) - at the MCG was too good an opportunity to miss.

It was heartening to see our emerging band of psychopaths (Moloney, Rivers, Sylvia, Warnock etc..) starting fights all over the place early on. Much more exciting than that sort of faux agro bullshit we're used to seeing from the distinctly non-intimidating likes of Miller and Green. Somehow despite only being a fringe member of the nutcase brigade Aaron Davey managed to get himself reported for striking. Explain that. Can't have been anything too vicious though given that nobody noticed.

Also reported was Ricky Petterd for abusive language. What do you have to say to an umpire to get reported for being abusive in 2009? Especially considering the ball was at the other end of the field at the time. As far as I can remember the last player we had to be convicted of such a heinous crime was the great man Jakovich in 91 or 92. But that was a different era. A time before we had access to an internet filled with 8 billion different websites featuring doe eyed Ukranian women being led blindfolded into stables.

How often have you seen a 50 paid for 'abuse' in the last few years? Plenty. And how often has the 'abuse' been of such a high quality that the umpire has decided to pull the book for it? Never. I had my doubts about Ricky's future, but now that it turns out he's even more of a foul-mouthed Kevin Bloody Wilson figure than Lynden "F*CK!" Dunn he's gone up a notch in my book. Of course being 25% more popular to some scrub off the internet doesn't mean much when you're forking over $1500 to the A. Demetriou 2009 Cyprus Holiday Fund at the tribunal on Monday night, but whatever he said I want to put on a t-shirt. It can sit alongside the "Meesen Magic" cape and "I saw Mark Jamar have more than 5 kicks" t-shirt in the Demonblog Megastore.

Back to the first quarter. We copped the first goal, but then again we always do. At least for once it wasn't in the first minute. Ricky "Bloody" Petterd got our first (maybe he is a forward after all?) before Green slotted one on the run to level it and the Jurrahcane goaled to put us in front.

It was all coming together very nicely, due mainly to a complete lack of pressure from the Eagles. Even our forward line seemed potent. Robertson looks so much better with another strong marking target down there. Jurrah is a lock to play out the rest of the season the way he's going. Anyone who thought he might be overwhelmed by the senior game was wrong, wrong, wrong. He was even handballing with confidence yesterday. Promises to be an absolute gun in the next couple of years.

It's a shame Watts didn't play, because yesterday was just the game he was waiting for. I'll take their word for that he was sick all week but today would have been a great opportunity against a lesser team to show what he's got. Not that he's done anything particuarly wrong yet, but I'm sure everyone - including him - is sick to death of hearing speculation about why we drafted the wrong guy.

In case you missed it the guy we 'should' have drafted got 0 kicks, 8 handballs and 5 hitouts. Can everyone, and I mean everyone, now admit that you can't judge a first year player on a handful of games. One more idiotic "we picked the wrong guy" thread on a forum and I would have gone postal.

At the other end of the experience scale we had Wheatley. Inexplicably recalled after a dog of a game for Casey last week he was dishing up more of the same at this level. Luckily for him West Coast at the MCG are actually worse than Williamstown at Point Gellibrand so nearly got away with it. His kicking might have been pox but at least defensively he was ok. The difference between a 150 gamer and a 10 gamer is usually that the more experienced guy instinctively knows where to go, and that paid off a couple of times today. Doesn't mean he shouldn't get the big handshake, gold watch and boot out the door at the end of the year though.

Frawley's defensive work was great early but his kicking is still a concern. His technique is, to be polite, awkward and it looks to me like he hesitates between thinking about dropping the ball and actually doing it. It's no wonder that his kicks get chopped off all the time. Has been great this season but needs to work on disposal. Take a look at Rivers, he not only marks anything coming near him but hits a target most of the time.

The other big member of our backline unit Stef Martin has suddenly turned into the ultimate utility player. One minute he's in defence, then he's winning hitouts, then he's going forward and kicking goals. Or completely spraying them in a farcical manner like in the second quarter. He doesn't look a natural forward but given that he can take big grabs as well as hold his own in the ruck he might be forced down that path simply for lack of spots in defence. God forbid Rivers keeps managing to avoid getting injured and Garland returns next year there's really nowhere for him to go. I prescribe a summer of set-shots at Casey Fields.

Our hardness at the ball was a feature of the day. Not only did everyone try to go the biff with their opponents before the first bounce but they jumped all over them during the game as we racked up tackles all over the place and worried the Eagles players out of it. Five goals in a row in the second quarter gave us a nice break at half-time, but as commentators will queue up to tell you "they don't know how to win". Whatever that means. I disagree seeing that half of this side have played in winning reserves teams several times this year.

Undoubted highlight of the second quarter was Sylvia's goal on the run from platform two of Jolimont Station. His kicking on the run from outside 50 is almost flawless. Shame about the set shots though. Apparently he's also whacked somebody and might be in trouble on video evidence. Whatever. Son you've had the month of your life - take a rest!

And indeed the third quarter seemed to prove that they were going the right way. The SME marked and goalled, Nathan Jones got killed by Wirrpunda's ass but bounced back to come on and kick a crucial goal, and Mark f'ing Jamar topped off yet another of his career best games but kicking a snap around the corner. Jamar! Snaps! How could we lose? Well copping a goal right at the end of the quarter didn't help. We seemed to be lost between running down the last two minutes and trying to score again. Eventually it turned out to be half of one, half of the other and a bit of dinky chip ended up with a speculative bomb inside 50 from which the Eagles rebounded and goaled. And thanks to that the Terror Alert was officially raised,

Had we goalled with that last stab forward it would have gone from yellow to blue, but instead shot right back up to orange due to a strong and credible threat that we were about to completely fall apart.

The alert was raised to a new, never before seen, level (brown) when they got the second of the last quarter to cut the margin to just over 2 goals. Especially considering how we were torching opportunities to put the game away all over the place. Even when Robertson kicked what turned out to be the sealer we had no idea there was only a minute or so left and panicked appropriately. No need. Siren. Win. Relief. We're better than Fitzroy 1996 after all.

It was hard to get obscenely excited at the end. Yeah we won, and that was great but who did we beat? The Bunbury Under 12's? They were gash. I'll be looking for the same intensity and flow against the much better Port next week.

2009 Allen Jakovich Medal Votes

Votes for people who deserve them? Well it had to happen one day. How good was Grimes? Is there any doubt that we're going to be the big winners from the Johnstone trade? He'd be stiff not to get the rising star nod this week. Unlikely to win it, but fark me what a game yesterday. Not surprisingly he leaps into the lead for the Hilton Medal.

5 - Jack Grimes
4 - Brock McLean
3 - Mark Jamar
2 - Russell Robertson
1 - Jared Rivers

Apologies to Bate, Bennell, Bruce, Green, Jones, Jurrah, Martin, McDonald, Moloney, Petterd, Sylvia, Warnock

23 - Aaron Davey
18 - Brent Moloney, Colin Sylvia
13 - Nathan Jones
14 - Brad Green
12 - Stefan Martin, Brock McLean
11 - Mark Jamar (LEADER: Strawbs O'Dwyer Medal for Ruckman of the Year)
10 - Cameron Bruce, James Frawley (LEADER: 2009 Marcus Seecamp Medal for Defender of the Year)
9 - Matthew Bate, Jared Rivers
7 - Brad Miller, Jack Grimes (LEADER: 2009 Jeff Hilton Medal for Rookie of the Year)
6 - Cale Morton
5 - Matthew Warnock, Kyle Cheney, Russell Robertson
4 - Jamie Bennell
3 - Ricky Petterd, Matthew Whelan
2 - James McDonald, Paul Johnson
1 - Lynden Dunn, Liam Jurrah

Crowd Watch
Being in a corporate box with eleven other people, none of whom actually care about the result, is no way to live. It's nice to get away from the sort of terrace slop who make you want to start killing people, but some passion would be nice. As it was we were raining goals and eleven people were hooking into the beef. Meh.

Nice of them to give the entire middle deck of the Ponsford Stand to West Coast fans too. Why then did they all choose to sit on the far right hand side? Is there some stigma about having to watch the game through a set of goalposts that I wasn't aware of?

Milat Family Serial Killer Korner
Barry Hall wants out of Sydney. We need a massive full forward. *ducks a shower of cans* Well, why not? Let's fantasise for a second and pretend that Footscray won't throw everything they've got at him to secure the FF they desperately need. And let's assume that somebody the wrong side of thirty would want to play for a team that never win a flag in his time. What then would be the issue? Yes he's 'eccentric', and we might get three games out of him before he gets the electric chair for murdering somebody on the ground but wouldn't you love to see a big strong, possibly insane, bastard marshalling our forward line?

I wouldn't spend trade-wise anything on him. It'd be ultra-low picks, PSD or nothing but it would at least bring some interest to the club. Haven't we suffered for long enough without a potentially violent serial offender on our list? Rod Grinter fans I know you're with me.

We need to get over this obsession we have with recruiting all youth and nothing else. Generally it's the right way to go, just look at what happened to Carlton after they stacked their side with mature age discards, but would it really hurt us to have one or two big bodies thrown into the more specialised positions while the kids develop?

If we went back in time and applied today's standards to, say, the 1998 season would we have used PSD pick 1 on Jamie Shanahan? Probably not. We would probably have picked some kid from Warracknabeel who you'd never have heard of again. Joel Smith went at #2 but didn't play for the whole year - hardly of use to us - and Matthew Bode @ 3 was a decent player at best. Shanahan on the other hand gave us one great season and one ordinary season for basically nothing. Then Chris Lamb was supposed to come in and replace him. Didn't quite work that way, mainly due to Daniher hating Lamb with a passion, but you see my point. It's not a crime to throw one solitary older player into a bunch of kids to see what happens. Just don't put him in the boxing ring with Watts.

Ok, maybe it's not going to happen but can we at least consider the prospect of grabbing a big KPF from one of the state leagues on the cheap? I have no idea who Brant Chambers is (wasn't he down that mine in Tasmania) but he's kicked 100+ goals for the last two years in the SANFL. Has played 150 games for them so he can't be that young, but fark me if you get three or four years out of somebody for free then what have you lost?

Of course he might have absolutely no interest, but at least pick up the phone and ask him. Everyone bags West Coast for using a PSD pick on Troy Wilson @ 28 years old but he kicked 40 in his first season. Wouldn't somebody who could kick 40 goals in a year look good right about now? Need I remind you that last year Miller won our goalkicking with 26. Matthew Bate is currently on 18. FRED FANNING KICKED 18 IN ONE GAME FOR GOD'S SAKE.

Kasey Korner
Was tempted to go to C. Fields for the Bendigo game on Sunday - especially considering how it should be a thumping win against a trash side but am pulling the pin due to being rather ill. The last place I want to keel over and die is 2km outside of Cranbourne.

Around the Grounds
Even after all these years I still hate St. Kilda. Having watched the Bulldogs dismantle Hawthorn in one of the most amazing first halves in modern history I'll be more than happy to back them in September. Geelong will do as a backup.

Collingwood would be unfortunate only because they have the record number of idiot 'fans' who have never been to a game in their lives but will instantly don black and white and pretend they're the biggest fans in history if they won.

And nobody else has a snowballs chance in hell of winning the flag so why bother discussing them?

Of course I'd love an interstate team to nick in and win it, because then we wouldn't have to hear anything about it and all the fake 'fans' could stay living under rocks until the next time the team they claim to follow just to be in with the friends/workmates are doing well. Unfortunately the interstate teams are completely pox - some more than others if today was anything to go by - and have as much chance of challenging for the flag as a D4 amateurs side.

Next Week
Port Adelaide at the MCG. Surely not. Unfortunately they've hit their straps this week by flogging the Lions and will probably beat us comfortably. Unfortunately now that Choco Williams has re-signed as their coach it means that there's still something I like about them. If he'd gone and all we'd been left with was their putrid song and 1982 colour scheme then it'd be a lot easier to hate them.

Administrative Announcement
Demonblog is still moving to Blogspot whenever I finish transferring all the old posts over (only the 2006 season to go!) However there's another even more important project that a few of us are working on at the moment that you might want to know about. Go to this site then consider an MFC version in a similar format. Hot? I reckon. If you're interested in contributing please email supermercado AT or Twitter me @demonblog . No tourists yet please, we need people who will add content or help with design.

Thursday 2 July 2009

Demonblog's mid-season review and depression session

Well, it's still in the 'midst' of the season isn't it? Realistically this would have made more sense to do during the split round but I was busy freezing to death at Vi$y Park watching Casey. Now, let's look back at the horror that has been our season.

Following format stolen from the Big Footy Melbourne board, who stole it from somewhere else.

Our best winWell duh. You guess.

Our worst loss
Queen's Birthday or the Essendon game.

The single most exciting moment of the season so far
a) Finding out there was only 8 seconds to go in the Richmond game
b) Liam Jurrah's first goal
c) Signing two major sponsors when we weren't even going to get one.

The single worst moment of the season so far
a) The entire first quarter against the Pies.
b) Stynes' illness
c) John Meesen appears briefly and then disappears. Just like Jebus he will rise again.

We can't do without
a) Davey
b) Green
c) Sylvia

Could do more
a) McLean
b) Jones
c) Johnson

Mr Consistent
a) Moloney
b) Davey
c) Green

Can’t cement a spot
a) Dunn
b) Dunn
c) Dunn - wtf does the man have to do?

The player who I'm always ready to forgive for a mistake
a) Moloney
b) Martin
c) Green

The player who I'm always ready to knock for a mistake
a) Jamar (though on the strength of his two
b) Robertson
c) Johnson

Who do we want
a) Tom Scully
b) A mature aged KPF

The opposition player I'd pay money to see
a) Cyril
b) Pavlich
c) B. Harvey

The opposition player I’d pay money to see decked
a) Judd
b) Milne
c) Robert Warnock
d) Chris Johnson

Before the season, I thought we'd finish 15th
As of now, I reckon we'll end up lucky to make 16th.

B&F: Aaron Davey

Grand finalists: Geelong vs Bulldogs (sucked in Saints!)

Premiers: Geelong

Brownlow Medalist: Surely Ablett.

Coleman: Jonathan Brown

Player-by-Player ratings
No explanations, no logic.

Grades are ranked on how I expected them to be playing this year. Therefore the bigger the reputation the more harshly they're marked.

Bail, Rohan C
Bartram, Clint C-
Bate, Matthew B+
Bell, Daniel D
Bennell, Jamie A-
Blease, Sam n/a
Bruce, Cameron C
Buckley, Simon n/a
Cheney, Kyle B-
Davey, Aaron A
Dunn, Lynden C-
Frawley, James B+
Garland, Colin n/a
Green, Brad B
Grimes, Jack A-
Jamar, Mark B+
Jetta, Neville B-
Johnson, Paul D-
Jones, Nathan C-
Jurrah, Liam B
Maric, Addam B
Martin, Stefan B
McDonald, James C-
McLean, Brock C-
McNamara, Tom C+
Meesen, John B-
Miller, Brad B-
Morton, Cale C
Newton, Michael C
Petterd, Ricky C
Rivers, Jared B+
Robertson, Russell C
Strauss, James B-
Sylvia, Colin A+
Warnock, Matthew B-
Watts, Jack C
Wheatley, Paul C-
Whelan, Matthew C
Wonaeamirri, Austin n/a

Bailey, Dean C
Connolly, Chris C+
Fans, Melbourne B-
Stynes, Jim B+

Procedural announcement - From next week will redirect to a new site hosted by Blogspot. Both Mr. Big Footy himself and I have forgotten how to edit the links or display of this page, and I'm not sure the tiny readership of this site is making him enough money to bother. So, we move on. If you want to look into the future visit the new site before the redirection. Keep hitting up and you'll automatically be redirected when the change is made.