WHERE LIFE IMITATES FOOTBALL
And what a round it’s been in Footy Eddie. The Barry Crockers started off like a German Band and finished with a dirge. They’ll probably say it wasn’t a cause, but there’s a fair bit of travelling in there, and they probably only slept in their own bed two or three times this week. Then it became The Eagles turn to feel the weariness of travel. They too, got off to a flyer, and the Magglepies looked gone for all money. But they too, rallied, hauled in the lead and went on to book a trip up to Coathanger Bay next Friday night.
The two Million Dollar Man has come out swinging about fitness gurus, saying they’re paid far too much, and have too much influence on the game. A bit rich wouldn’t you say, even for the Great Helmsman? High performance and fitness go together. To maximize performance, the mind must have absolute faith in the body’s ability to deliver. It has become a finely tuned science. (I thought you were going to say scam there for a while Wrap – Ed) Not sure Andrew’s moved with the times here. (A bit like his taste in music? – Ed).
It’s been asked if we can award a bar to the Fevola – as in Fevola Medal & Bar? Why, because whoever it is who sets the finals agenda at Jellymont House deserves one. What is it with these drongos? First they concede there’s been a cock-up and move the match forward from 7.45 to 5.15. Then they move it forward to 4.00pm on Saturday arvo when they realize what drips that call makes them look. (It couldn’t possibly challenge anything Channel Kerry has scheduled could it? – Ed) So why not move it all the way to the traditional time of 2.30pm? Surely they can’t be concerned about looking wimpish, foolish or, heaven forbid, incompetent can they? That’s a given anyway.
And you mightn’t hear it from Clarko. or Andy Newbold, either, at least not in public. But take a walk on the wild side; stroll leisurely along Glenferrie Road or linger over the fruit & veggie shopping at Toscano’s. (The wildest thing that ever happens in Glenferrie Road Wrap is the papier-mâché neddies they put out for the Spring Racing Carnival – Ed) You’ll hear it there all right. The crux of it is that Hawthorn have fought hard to earn the Friday Preliminary Final – and it is not negotiable. Someone should lose their job over this cock-up.
We’ve decided to move early on the KRrudd Medal count this year. It’s not been as clear-cut as you would have thought midway through the year. Hands up those who voted for Mickey The Maltster? Gee, that’s a lot. And it should be said that for delusional excellence he’s been the clubhouse leader since he declared he wouldn’t dance on the grave of other coaches. In fact his win has been a foregone conclusion for some time now. Or so you’d think. But when it comes to delusional excellence, it’s difficult to leave out the Board & Football Department of that fine upstanding club along Royal Parade.
This Century they’ve missed out on draft picks for rorting the salary cap, sacked three coaches, two of them in the middle of contract extensions – contract extensions that were rushed into after delusional on-field performances – and been staving off bankruptcy by the largess of well-heeled supporters. Are they happy with that? Oh no; they’re back on the horse again. They’ve paid out Rattz, and they’re in a grubby fight over the fine print as they jettison unwanted coaches to make way for the next Messiah. The Messiah who is so grateful for the chance to unwrap his cupboard of magic potions again that he’s only asking a mill a year for three years, plus of course his own team of gurus, also with snout and both trotters in the trough. Rumour has it that the board’s divided. (Crikey, is that the best they can do – Ed) Maybe sharing the Inaugural KRudd Memorial Shield with their Saviour will cheer them up.
Hey, did you see it on Saturday night? With 7½ minutes to go, the cameras caught a clear view of the Selwood Family sliding elbow. As difficult to verify as the existence of the thylacine, we were granted a clear demonstration of how the Selwoodius toohigh has evaded predators over the years. When tackled around the arm, the Selwoodius leans to one side while at the same time raising the outer arm so the tackle rides up around the neck. This releases the Selwoodious from the tackle and forces the tackler’s arm up around the neck region of the Selwoodius. This generally earns a free from unsuspecting umpires. Although it should be mentioned here, that evolution is catching up with that evasive mechanism and this particular instance, as neat an example as you’d wish to see, went unrewarded.
Maggot Watch. The predictable September whistle swallowing ritual continued in Week II of the Finals. Which only serves to highlight those frees they do pay & those they don’t. For instance, the umpires could pay West Coast a jumper tug in the goal square, yet they couldn’t pay one to Collingwood out on the wing. Digger’s claim that the umpires crucify Collingwood week in week out would have been well founded on Saturday Night.
Oh, and Eddie, while I’ve got you there Son; by any take, by any camera angle, the ball was clearly over the goal line. Don’t worry what Richo & Darce had to say about it. They’re paid to bait the bears. Try to remember you’re a club President on match day when your team’s playing.
But enough of my persiflage, let’s see who’s left to go through after Week II of The Finals.
The Pride of South Australia v The Ever So Dangerous Dockers. Just when you thought it was going to be a procession, Big Taylor Walker showed the Football World why he’s the most loved Mullet in the City of Light. With the Chardonnays looked decidedly corked, he came from the clouds and turned this game on its head. Although you’d have to take aboard the closing comment of the Velvet Fog at the end of the 3rd Stanza; it’s a long way to the Grand Final for either of these two sides. In fact, you could say it was a tale with two ends. At one end the key forward was held – Pavlich by Rutten. Remember, Rutten had lost the support of Rising Star Talia and Pavlich had destroyed Geelong’s much vaunted defence last week. At the other end, Taylor Walker was unstoppable. His mobility, strength – both body and overhead – was too much for The Docker Defenders.
Don’t let the 10 point win fool you, The Ravens had to come from 29 points down in the 2nd Quarter and The Stevedores kept at them all night. But never mind what Rossy Lyon has said about the travel not being a factor – that was just for the troops & the Faithful. Adelaide still came into the match with only their trusty Plan A. In the end it was the attrition of Plan A that wore down The Weary Dockers.
And we can’t let this one go without mentioning the crowd. If the Great Helmsman’s not going to comment, it’s up to us I guess. Apart from a dozen rows or so behind the goals reserved for the Purple Horde, the 31,742 was mainly made up of Free Radicals. What is it with the People of Church Town? This was a Cutthroat Final at Crow Park for crying out loud. They would have got more than that at Telstra Dome. Too cold? Better options? The Red Lion can only hold so many and Rundle Mall is closed while they seed the chrysanthemum & carnation planters for the Spring display. Surely they weren’t shying away from an expected belting. Soft track bullies? They’d surely refute that vile suggestion. What about front runners? Equally offensive. Or was it as one of the Singing Cowboys suggested on Saturday morning – when told it was a home game, the good burghers of The City of Light thought that meant to stay at home? Whatever way you look at it, it reflects poorly on the commitment of the Adelaide public’s support for the National Competition.
Rossy Lyon will be planning his Top Four Finish as soon as the draw fixture stitch-up for the 2013 Season is announced. And as he said to Coach Sando as they shook after the siren; next Saturday you’ll be up against the best kicking & scoring side in The Competition. There’ll be tall forwards, storming midfielders and icy backs. Were best equipped to deal with the situation, but you’ve got the Mars Bar Son.
Collingwood v West Coast. The Pies were in trouble early. The umpires clearly hadn’t read the chapter in the Maggot Central Manual which states When in doubt, award the frees the way the Homecrowd calls them. And don’t think for a moment The Monochrome Army wasn’t advising with voice & hand signal. To add to their woes, their team was sluggish. Outplayed all over the ground, they dug deep and found The GAD that has carried ocross three centuries of greatness. As they built the pressure, they broke The Eddie Eagles’ vice-like grip on the match. Winning the contested footy and finding some of their old self belief, and despite a touch of Collywobbles around the sticks, they dragged themselves back from oblivion to be in touch at the Long Interval. (They did that last week too Wrap – Ed)
In the Championship Quarter The Mighties cranked up the intensity a few more notches and The Coasters learnt the meaning of Pressure Football. It was a low scoring game and it would have been galling to Bucks to concede a major in the dying stages of this quarter, as they had in the previous one. Still, they had the momentum. David was holding off Goliath. Goliath had landed a few blows, but David’s shanghai was running hot – pouring the yonnies out at a phenomenal rate. The Weagle talls weren’t having any influence. Kennedy had had 10 disposals to the Citrus Break and Darling seven. NickNat had eight touches to his name and Big Cox was leading the bunch with 15. The Animal Lynch was in the red singlet. However, all that having been said, it would only take a five-minute burst to wipe off the slender 10 point lead The Maggies held.
We can’t let the 3rd Quarter go without mentioning Daisy Thomas. No longer The Drouin Showpony with the blonde moptop, he single-handedly provided the Game Breaker. Three goals in seven minutes hauled The Maggies into the contest after looking gaaawn.
We all know that the Big Men don’t get any smaller as the game goes on. But the truth of it was that while Cox & Natanui were getting their hands to the ball first, and Kerr, Shuey & Priddis had leather blisters on both hands, they were under immense pressure. Bucks must have read The Lads the Riot Act – or the announcement that Mickey the Messiah had joined another faith had cleared the air – but Beams, Swan, Pendlebury Sidebottom & Thomas were back to their early season best. Sure, there was the odd fumble, but they were moving the ball well. And make no mistake; this was all about the pressure. There were lead changes in the last, but The Woodsmen always looked as though they were going to prevail. After successive do-or-die finals they board the Spirit of Progress up to Sin City to face the rested Swans next Friday.
By the time they rang the bell The Carringbush market, after early losses, was up several points on the day. However, heavy losses were sustained by Cloke & Cloke Ltd. After successive substantial gains over the previous few weeks, this mercurial stock plunged once more. Buyers are warned to be wary of overholding, and takeover interest is reported to be waning.
And remember, if you read it in the Wrap you’ll know it’s not crap.