Sunday, 29 July 2018

Attempting reentry

In the blood frenzy of sacking Jack Watts, Simon Goodwin unwittingly contracted the role of scapegoat for everything. That's not so unusual for a coach, it's just that our last two either deserved it or followed somebody who deserved it. Whether he can coach a finals side or not is still up for debate, but he's been great for content. Earlier in the season we got two weeks out of a casual Wolf of Wall Street reference, and when he compared us to James Bond this week, Demonblog Towers went off like Air Crash Investigation hearing about a controlled flight into terrain.

In having to justify why he didn't have several players executed in the wake of the Geelong capitulation, the coach suggested that 007 might have been a gentleman but he was also a killer. I've been an advocate of Gentlemania in football ever since Jimmy Toumpas deliberately sought out his opponent for a handshake in his first pre-season game (mind you, look what happened to him), but not sure I followed his line of thinking. Bond was more of a well-dressed mad rooter than anything. He also got his best gimmicks from a kindly old man, which could mean a comeback for Neil Craig.

Given the deep psychological trauma inflicted on me by the result at Kardinia Park - and as much as I kept it inside after Sunday it slashed my soul - any old gimmick would do to lighten the mood. I hoped Sam Frost would win the game by sprinting towards a pack like an out of control circus animal, leaping over the pack to deliver a key spoil, then ripping a red and blue parachute before floating gently back to earth...

... instead he won a free kick, played on behind the umpire's back, ran about 35 metres at warp speed without being pulled up and turned it over. But who's worried about that now? Especially after a night where the Homebrand backline did a fantastic job of holding Adelaide's key forwards quiet, then built a fort and grimly defended the lead for the last 10 minutes. It must have been a lot easier in medieval times when you could just pour boiling oil on your enemies. Had we lost I may have quibbled with the free kick and goal in the last two minutes from Frost's optimistic attempt to run through their forward line, but we didn't so all clear.

If last week was Geelong doing their impression of classic era Bond narrowly escaping a laser up his jaffas, this was like the hard to watch Pierce Brosnan era where you just wanted them to get to the end quickly. There was some enjoyment had, for the third week in a row we put on an exhibition of the game in the third quarter that you could package up and send overseas to get people interested in the sport. It's just the other three that had us dangling above a shark tank by our fingertips, thankful to the Crows for not being capable of putting us away.

The first half pointed to bad things, we were led to expect a fiery reaction to the Geelong debacle, but as far as I could see we were so focused on the last 10 minutes that nobody remembered to turn up at the start. The increasingly tired looking Gawn tapped to Adelaide players, Harmes tagged Sloane and kicked like he'd broken his foot as well as his hand, and as usual three of our players ran to every ball-carrier and left half a dozen opponents free on the outside. We spent so much time camped in the Adelaide backline trying to keep them out that it was a minor miracle to be less than 10 points down at quarter time.

Our standard operating procedure is to go inside 50 dozens of times for no reward, which was off the table when we couldn't get the ball across half way, much less close enough to aimlessly boot it into attack. Adelaide in Alice was a rare occasion where we killed a team in the first quarter and they stayed dead, and that season best 7.1 blitzkrieg seemed like a lifetime ago here. That day we barely let them hold the ball long enough to put our tackling to the test, this time they were walking through jelly-handed efforts with contempt. One Crow in particular regularly tripped the light fantastic through half a dozen players like he was coated in oil. Like most things, this improved later, before the rain came and the contest was reduced to nothing but tackling and the Chinese water torture slow drip of Adelaide goals.

Then there were the crab-like attempts to mark, keeping us from getting any sort of rhythm going. It always seems silly to have gone off like a pork chop when you come back to win, but at this point I was ready to borrow Don Pyke's kidnap bus and drive the team as far away from Melbourne as possible. There didn't seem to be any way to lift the weight off us long enough to play our natural game. Somehow we still scored 90 despite spending the last term under siege. Thank god for third quarters, a few years ago we came back after half time playing like the team talk had been given by a mime and now it's our best quarter. Since Round 6 we've kicked five goals in a third term nine times, with a couple of fours as well. The second half defence is not so good, but one issue per season please.

If Adelaide's early dominance had continued I'd have bitterly pointed to the incident which gifted them their first. Bayley Fritsch blundered by picking up a ball he should definitely have run out of bounds, only to be immediately buried in a tackle, hauled over the line and pinged for deliberate. The decision was very much a 'how the locals like it' IGA job, but what was he doing picking it up to start with? Because I've enjoyed the time he's spent playing for us I'll give him the benefit of the doubt that he was desperately trying to find a way to get the ball outside 50 and start something positive.

After three goals the prospect of an interstate stranglewank was on the agenda, or a total interstate collapse like the ones we used to put on regularly at Football Park. Take some time now to reflect on what a graveyard that place was, during our great losing streak we played there in four finals seasons and were regularly humped senseless. Then Adelaide Oval opens in the mid-table mediocrity, no finals (yet?) era and we've had four wins and lost two thrillers in five seasons. It looks like it would be a nice place to go if the locals didn't show up.

Our belated response was textbook ball movement reminiscent of a finals team, it's just that most of them do it for four quarters a week instead of in random outbursts. Neal-Bullen hit a perfect pass from the boundary to Garlett in the corridor, who shielded the mark perfectly, then flicked it to Tom McSizzle storming inside 50 on a long run out of defence. He ran back with the flight waiting for it to drop for an eternity, took a high risk bounce and slotted it to get us back in the mix.

We should have been back out of the mix shortly after, but for an easy set shot hitting the post. It was not the last time an unnecessary interface of ball and woodwork saved us. Despite that we'd settled things down and stopped looking like everyone was suffering post-traumatic stress. Jordan Lewis was the unusual second goalkicker, profiting from a smart Melksham handball to kick on the run from 50. It was about 20 metres more than I thought he had in him, and to prove it wasn't a fluke he did the same thing from an identical spot in the third quarter.

On the occasion of his 300th game, Lewis picked a good night to rip out his best performance of the season. After copping significant shit this year - plenty of it from me - this was the perfect demonstration of what he can do under the right circumstances. Still think it would be prudent to pull up stumps at the end of the season, but I'll have more of this in the next four to eight weeks if he's offering. Meanwhile, did he deliberately call his kid 'Hughie Lewis'? And if so are the other two collectively 'the News'? (NB: for more MFC related references to the original Huey see the very poorly constructed Facebook Comment of the Week #20).

Those goals turned the momentum in our favour, but for no further reward before they kicked an steadier straight of their arse from the boundary line. This third goal from a forward 50 stoppage was a downer after battling our way into the game, but given how many times we've dug out of similar holes to get back to within a goal I shouldn't have been concerned. But I was absolutely shitting it, with one side of my brain watching the game and the other doing live ladder predictors to work out what we'd have to do to get in after a loss. The answer was plenty, an extra four points now was vital to make sure we were playing to avoid dropping out rather than relying on a 2016 style Ultimate Bradbury of unlikely results to go in our favour. West Coast stitched us up by going to pieces in Hobart today, making this win even more important.

The late seven point play got us back within 10, a staggeringly good result considering how they'd battered us at the start. It was a higher stakes version of the Port game where we mangled them for five minutes then conceded a last minute goal that gave them life. This time we got the full seven point play, with McDonald delivering the traditional reaction to his set shot accuracy being highlighted on commentary, before Oliver set up Fritsch for a goal after the siren. Of the two consecutive quarters featuring a post-siren goal this was certainly my favourite.

I wanted to believe that we'd cherish our second life and go on from there, instead we were straight back into trying to extract the ball from defence. We're so devoid of playmakers down there that if Gold Coast can get four centre clearances to begin the quarters next week they may be able to play out a nil-all draw.

The Fritsch goal was cancelled out in the opening minutes, before Frost gave away another via a downfield free and goal courtesy of a vigorous bump to the back of an opponent. It was a reasonably soft free, made up for later by Hogan getting one 10 times softer, but I'd argue that you're not going to do yourself any favours bumping a forearm squarely into an opponent's back while he's looking in the other direction. Everyone knows he was well aware that Frost was there and was trying to block his run but as marketing wankers say 'the optics' were not good.

Back to 20 points down again and having to dig ourselves out of a near autoerotic asphyxiation scenario for a second time it took a towering mark at the top of the square by Melksham from a lovely kick by Sir Neville Jetta to keep us alive. Nifty also set up the next one, catching his old rival Eddie Betts holding the ball in the middle of the ground, allowing Petracca to lob a long kick towards McSizzle in the square. His goal won us the quarter but only narrowly, after pulling off a Reverse DemonTime® in the first term we almost gave it back in the dying seconds here. The 'Hall of Shit MFC Spoils That Cost Goals' is unlikely to ever find a better contender than Jayden Hunt in the first quarter of Round 23, 2017 and while this one was on the wing it still directly contributed. Some random Adelaidian who I'd never heard of until last night missed from the forward pocket and we retained hope going into half time.

Turns out there was no reason to be afraid (at least until the last quarter), if Gawn was actually tired it didn't show in the second half. There were none of his usual towering marks forward or back, but he started to dominate the ruck duels and continued to play like a midfielder at ground level. Maybe he broke through the fatigue barrier, maybe it was Oliver, Brayshaw and yes indeed even Dom Tyson operating at high capacity below him, or maybe I was just reading the situation badly to begin with. This combination eventually broke Adelaide, but we had to get through a nervy few minutes first.

Lewis got his carbon copy second to tie the scores, then with clearances for the quarter at 7-0 within the first few minutes, Melksham picked the ball up and in one action kicked from 60 metres out, watching the ball bounce in multiple directions before getting it right on the last one and giving us the lead. Now we were not only in the game but bossing them, like a cover version of the Adelaide Oval 2017 game where we completed the Stranglewank then piled another seven goals on to make sure of it.

This time we had to surrender the lead once more via a defensive fiasco where three players jumped at the same ball. They all did very well last night allowing for the odd horrific blunder so I'm prepared to give them this one. Still not convinced by Joel Smith, I love his athleticism and enthusiasm but suspect that any team with serious aspirations would be playing him unless they absolutely had to. Nevertheless, the record shows that their three key forwards got one goal between them and even that was from a free, so no harm done.

The riot started in earnest when the Crows bloke who'd been so slippery earlier fluffed a simple kick going back into his own 50, Garlett bounced it around like a basketball for what seemed like an eternity, then flipped it out to Fritsch for the finish. On replay you will note kindly that a shepherd by the Anal-Bullet gave him the time he needed to finally gather and create the goal. This is why shepherding is a good thing, not just trying to get into open space to get a kick but actually working for your teammate. In this case result = goal, which should be all the evidence you need that it should be done more often. Next step is to eliminate everyone being pulled to the ball carrier like a magnet, only to leave multiple players free to take the ball.

After Fritsch came Kennedy-Harris getting his snap right this week, Petracca setting up McDonald's third, and Garlett booting one after perfect front and centre CRUMB to extend the margin to about where it was at the same point last week. If I had to be reminded of what happened of that night I'm glad it was for the right reasons and not for completing another epic choke.

In a sign that things were really going our way we finished the quarter with an outrageously bad free to Hogan, and he was having such a rotten night it was the only way he'd get a shot. I'll be buggered if he's 100% fit, and he added to whatever's ailing him by rolling his ankle shortly before this. Given he was hobbling around like the elderly I had genuine concern that he'd collapse in the middle of his excessive run-up, but he lobbed it through from right in front and the margin was over five goals. This was going to take a fantastic fuck up to lose from here. Where have I heard that before?

At three quarter time Mrs. Demonblog emerged from hiding and asked the traditional question "are you winning?" I didn't even want to say we were five goals in front out loud in case it contributed to jinxing it. As she went to bed I assured her that if noises of pain and anguish broke out we were probably throwing the game away. Suffice to say that she, the neighbours, and the people who measure seismic activity heard plenty more from me over the last 30 minutes.

This time kicking the first goal of the last quarter would have been as good as hitting the Chris Sullivan Line before the break, especially with pissing rain rapidly approaching the Adelaide Oval. Not that we can play the wet to save ourselves, but six goals would have been enough of a barrier to run out the rest of the game in a series of endless stoppages. Instead we let the first in within a couple of minutes, much to the delight of the commentators who were barracking hard for the narrative of us imploding again. The stoppages saved us in the end but it was far too close for comfort.

As the rain bucketed down and locals struggled to cope with plastic ponchos, we were still winning in the middle of the ground but unable to land the killer blow. Melksham had a chance to make the battle for survival less nervy by converting one of our few half chances, but he missed from the pocket and the Crows stayed alive. The difference between them and Geelong is that last week we conceded 8.0 to end the game, while Adelaide battled the conditions for a not quite good enough 3.7.

To the surprise of many Tankquiry era Demon fans, Kyle Cheney is still going after all these years. He's still only 28, but is sporting a haircut that makes him look about 13. We traded him (while he was in Hong Kong airport on way to the infamous Shanghai Surprise game) for the pick that later became Tom McDonald and you'd have had long odds that they'd be playing against each other eight years later. Speaking of the McDonald family going forward, there was a surprise cameo from Oscar in the last quarter. He's four games short of the night Tom opened his account against North, but this rank set shot from 40 metres out directly in front confirmed that he won't be following his brother's lead and becoming a breakout forward star any time soon.

Kidnap mastermind Pyke obviously thought we'd spend the whole night bombing the ball forward and parked Kyle down there to mop up a string of endless kicks. It would have worked a treat too if it wasn't for us either a) not being able to get it down there, or b) running straight them for goals. He came to the fore in the last quarter when we were just hacking the ball forward to get it anywhere other than Adelaide's forward line. The uncontested nature of his touches stopped him from qualifying as a Kyle Kingsley, but he was giving us all sorts of trouble. Until they were desperate for goals in the last couple of minutes and he was still parked down there waiting to have it kicked at him while we used Fritsch to do the same unchallenged at the other end where it mattered.

Melksham's miss was nearly the first step to me ending the night with a fork jammed in the toaster, because the Crows went straight down the other end for Betts to hoof through a goal like he was playing in the dry. The weather might have been our friend at first, but now they looked like the only side likely to score in it. We got away with murder multiple times, including two other misses from the square before the big one at the end. As the endless stoppages went on I was watching the clock run down at glacial speed, a few seconds here and there at a time as they continually threatened to blow the game wide open with another goal. We were still effectively three up when Frost tried to escape by foot and conceded a goal, and battled away to the last 60 seconds before handing them an opportunity on a platter.

Good guy Betts must have realised that another five goal capitulation would have caused a triple figure death toll, because he gathered the ball from one of the 230 last quarter stoppages, turned towards an open goal and defied the laws of football by putting it into the post from point blank range. About time somebody else lost a game by doing something amazingly stupid. This followed on from another Adelaide player missing a sitter from the square earlier when he kicked straight up in the air. If there are football gods they've done fuck all for us in my lifetime, so as a football atheist I just had to put it down as a ridiculous, inexplicable moment of good luck.

If he'd kicked it we'd still have been in front but wobbling like an overloaded lifeboat and vulnerable to another after the siren incident. Imagine how few people would have turned up to see us play Gold Coast next week if we'd lost from five goals up in the last quarter again? More people would have put their foot through their TV than would be in the MCG stands next Sunday. Now we might not go to that game entirely comfortably, but can leave the house without being subject to open ridicule.

You'd like to have thought that even had Betts converted we'd have sludged out the last 50 seconds, but it's more likely somebody would boot it straight down Cheney's throat from the centre bounce and allow them another chance. Best that he missed to take that off the table. We survived the kick-in (not sure how, I'd spun around shrieking as it hit the post and landed face down on the couch) and could now be sure there wasn't enough time for even us to concede two goals.

After 15 minutes of trench warfare I'd have been satisfied with running down the last minute, but with the Crows desperately pushing forward for one last heave we managed to nick an exclamation mark goal on the counter. Neal-Bullen finished it to wrap up one of his better games, and I've got no idea what a 'pressure point' is unless a pissed Fev is involved but he had 84 of them. I understand this is a good thing.

The greatest water-related survival story since Tony Bullimore was complete and relief was obvious both in my loungeroom, where I was making a scene second only to the McDonald winner at Subiaco, and in the coaches' box. Goodwin unloaded some of the tension from last week by going right off, and who can blame him? The underrated highlight of the finish was the absolute contempt of AFLX premiership coach Stone Cold Craig Jennings to the emotional reaction of his boss. You could say he didn't appreciate the stiff whack to the head, but he wasn't offering a cracker one way or the other before that either.
Victory wasn't without some moments of skull-crushing tension, and I've woken up with a cracking headache today from clenching my jaw so tightly, but mission accomplished. Thanks for nothing West Coast you secessionist slurpers of Satanic shlong, but one way or the other the circus remains open for another week.

2018 Allen Jakovich Medal votes
5 - Clayton Oliver
4 - James Harmes
3 - Alex Neal-Bullen
2 - Angus Brayshaw
1 - Jordan Lewis

Serious apologies to Tyson, The Brothers Sizzle, Frost, Jetta, Melksham, Petracca and Gawn

And the Hamburglar firmly sets his eyes on the prize, opening a two game lead over Maximum and necking the challenge off absolutely everybody else unless we play a minimum of two finals. Elsewhere we're confident that McDonald can't catch Gawn and reach the 10 hitout per game qualification mark for the Stynes so Max can have that now. There's also massive news in the Seecamp, where the much maligned Lewis has drawn level with Jetta, who could probably fill my car with cement and I'd still forgive him. They're the original Odd Couple.

52 - Clayton Oliver
42 - Max Gawn (WINNER: Jim Stynes Medal for Ruckman of the Year)
--- No hope beyond here without at least two finals ---
24 - Jesse Hogan
--- Three finals needed for a share of the lead---
17 - Tom McDonald
--- Four finals needed. Fat chance ---
16 - Angus Brayshaw, Bayley Fritsch (PROVISIONAL WINNER: Jeff Hilton Rising Star Medal)
14 - James Harmes, Nathan Jones
--- Officially done for ---
11 - Jake Melksham
9 - Christian Petracca
8 - Jack Viney
6 - Neville Jetta (JOINT LEADER: Marcus Seecamp Medal for Defender of the Year), Jordan Lewis (JOINT LEADER: Marcus Seecamp Medal for Defender of the Year), Alex Neal-Bullen
5 - Jeff Garlett, Mitch Hannan
4 - Michael Hibberd, Oscar McDonald
3 - Dean Kent, Jake Lever
2 - Christian Salem
1 - Cameron Pedersen, Joel Smith

Aaron Davey Medal for Goal of the Year
I've got some love for the second Fritsch goal just because of ANB's shepherd, but I'll have to go for Melksham's long bomb. It's not like he knew it was going to take several zany bounces within two seconds, but it was worth it for the pick up on its own. He's got a vast collection of weekly prizes, so in this case we'll just wish him well that he escapes South Australia without running into one of their many hundreds of local serial killers.

Spargo still leads overall for the dance extravaganza and finish from the boundary against Geelong.

Considering how they've got about 150,000 fans it's disappointing to see that the Crows still can't put anything up that looks like it was made by adults of sound mind. In contrast to their primary school rubbish we were so excited to have somebody play a 300th game for us again that we put out a very nice commemorative Lewis effort. 19-0 for the year, and not much competition in the way of a perfect season.

Next Week
I suspect I'm not the only one who finally calmed down 15 minutes after the final siren and thought "shit, what if we lose to Gold Coast?" This would have been a significant concern under any circumstances, much less having just watched their score slowly creep to 44 against Carlton. On paper there is no chance in hell of Gold Coast winning, but I'll need a few flags before I ever go into a game 100% confident. If we could kill them off early that would be ace.

Considering the two last quarter fadeouts and playing in the rain, it might be a good thing that Casey had one of the 19 VFL season byes this week. But at the same time who's going to mess with a winning formula? I'm going to opt for minor changes, bringing in a quite literal fighter to provide a touch of niggle. JFK wasn't terrible by any means, but I just think that Bugg has more steel about him for what we're about to go through. Otherwise let's just hope they all remain well rested, and that whatever's ailing Hogan's ankle isn't terminal. I'm not keen on resting anyone because "it's only Gold Coast", but should he not be able to play for legitimate purposes I'll take Tim Smith to try and clear enough space for McDonald to kick 19.

IN: Bugg,
OUT: Kennedy-Harris (omit)
UNLUCKY: Hannan, T. Smith

The All New Bradbury Plan

The plan lives for another week, and now that Adelaide are finished it's a race for 5th to 11th. That's four who will make it and three who won't, and I'm still not convinced we're in the first group. The terrifying thing to consider is that North's win over West Coast today actually opens the door to winning 13 games and still finishing a full four points out of the final, and if that happens I will 100% self-harm.

Can win every week - will finish above us - Richmond and West Coast
Unlikely to be in the battle for 6th - 10th so may as well win - Collingwood, Port Adelaide
Likely to make the eight, usually still want them to lose - Geelong, GWS (↑) and Sydney (↓)
Lose against higher teams, beat lower teams, take games off each other - Hawthorn and North Melbourne
Preferred result depends on opposition, usually want a win against higher - Adelaide (↓) and Essendon
Win against higher teams, lose against lower teams - Nil
Good value as spoilers only - Brisbane, Carlton, Footscray, Fremantle, Gold Coast and St Kilda

Your Round 20 how to vote card:
Richmond d. Geelong (of course now that we need Richmond to win at the MCG they'll stop)
Essendon d. Hawthorn (it would keep the Bombers alive, but I'll risk it for the greater good because we need Hawthorn to beat Geelong later)
Brisbane d. North (if they win this on top of beating Hawthorn twice I'll put them in the Hall of Bradbury)
Adelaide d. Port (I'm just invested enough in the chance of Port stacking it that I can stand to keep the Crows barely alive for another week)
Collingwood d. Sydney (only because they're a game further back, we could still get something out of a Pies loss)
Carlton d. GWS (your 'fat chance' game of the week)

Around The Grounds
Not only did we win a crucial game that kept us neck-deep in the finals race, but Carlton's win over Gold Coast also handed us back the moral highground of living through the worst season by a team anyone cares about since Fitzroy. Fancy Blues fans thinking they had it worse than us in 2013 just because they'd won one less game, well now they've stuffed that up and will need to lose 10% in their last four games to even launch a challenge on the Neeld/Craig fiasco.

Speaking of Neeld, he's spoken in-depth about his tenure for the first time ever. I've not listened yet, but based on this article I'm expecting a load of old bollocks. He's trying to take the heat off wrecking Trengove's career, and has the strange quote about the older players that he "needed to be stronger in making my own mind about people initially". Who was he listening to then? Assistant coaches, CEOs, Ouija boards?

P.S - I've retired the old column name for stats, facts and figures due to it being a bit NQR. It served us well.

Hamfisted Forever

Imagine how much trouble we could have been spared if the Antichrist Football League had just introduced 6-6-6 positions (as opposed to the 6-6-6 finals), instead of fannying about the sham process of 'considering' all these other wacky rules. We'd have all been upset for a bit then probably realised it makes chuff all difference as long as you're not trying to defend a lead in the last 30 seconds, now they've made such a tremendous hash of the process that there's no trust left and even their puppets in the media are starting to nervously back away. That is the ones that aren't being handed brown paper envelopes with rules leaks in them.

Mission accomplished if they were going for the Donald Trump play of creating so much chaos that you're satisfied when the changes don't end in Armageddon. After all the bonkers stuff, including Malcolm Blight suggesting putting sandpaper on the ball so it would be easier to pick up because he's a moron, the starting positions don't seem so bad. I'm still not sure how this helps once the ball has cleared the centre, but obviously it's just swinging the door open for all sorts of other wacky shit. Like a goalsquare that pokes out so far you feel it may be compensating for inadequacies elsewhere. Apparently the Frankensquare is awesome because you'll be easily able to hoof the ball into the middle of the ground. Where the other team will have set up a wall because they know where it's going to go, for about 15 minutes until players realise that they should kick short again. Only this time there won't be the white-knuckle drama about them kicking it out on the full. Welcome to football for idiots.

The highlight of the week was the admission by Channel 7 errand boy Gil McLachlan that they were thinking about trialling the new rules in meaningless end of season games. Good on him for telling the truth, but the public reaction showed why real politicians haven't done that since about 1921. For a billion dollar organisation with delusions of taking over China they often seem to be run like a Thursday night indoor cricket comp in Dingley, but it would be a fitting end to a season they treated you like a moron for watching. I saw one suggestion that if the changes are inevitable you may as well trial them, but that takes the remarkably optimistic view of the trial being fair. It's like saying the North Korean election results indicate landslide support for the regime.

As we prepare for spectacle to be forced down our throat like foie gras, a reminder that you might have zero power to influence the league but you can choose to piss off your AFL membership and sink the cost into a premium MFC deal instead. Transfer your loyalties from an organisation that treats you like an idiot to one that's actually grateful for your business.

Final Thoughts
For the second time in five years I pulled out of plans to go to the Adelaide Oval and missed a famous victory (see also Round 7, 2014). It allowed me to retain my dignity and not sit in the crowd wearing a garbage bag, but makes it almost certain that when I do finally break my now eight season interstate game ban and go there we'll be mercilessly stuffed.

Future misery can wait, for now the dream of a finals berth before a) I'm stuffed for watching every week and/or b) they ruin the game with bonkers rule 'adjustments' remains in our own hands.  Diamonds may be forever, but any more games like this and I'll die of a heart attack by Round 23.

The Melbourne Football Club will return in 'Potential Banana Skin Game'


  1. Nice to see Milkshake’s mark over Cheney who was neither spoiling nor attempting to mark. Sydney’s tough run home might just save us. optimistically says we’re still a top four chance. Let’s just make the final eight.

  2. I think we'll do alright. Was doing a bit of esearch/research into the amazing Mick O'Sullivan and observed a rare error in your masterpiece/brainchild which is Demonwiki. The Round 19 game in 1982 was played at VFL Park, the article states the MCG. Hope this is of assistance.

    It is a massive work, nay, a brilliant work, nay, a mammoth undertaking. Trump will drain the swamp. There is a swamp there just waiting for Trump to drain it. That swamp will never be great again.

    1. Thank you, must have copied from another page for a template and forgot to change.


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