AFL Round 17 – West Coast v Sydney: Sunday carve up

Everyone loves a Sunday roast and there’s nothing better than juicy pork, baked veggies and crunchy crackling. Well maybe there is if it’s served up with a Swans win. And I’m going to tell you how you get all that in just under three hours. If you think you can’t cook and watch football, think again.

Now you might think your cupboard, and team, is missing a few utensils but don’t worry you only need a few key ingredients. First thing find yourself a great butcher. Me, I use a bloke one street over from my apartment. Been there forty years, little bit more expensive than Woolies but you know what you’re getting. Get them to roll up a bit of loin and score the skin. You could score it yourself but let’s face it Sunday football is a great time for a few ales and sharp edges and alcohol generally don’t mix.

Crank up the oven, get that bad boy as high it will go, and turn on 7Mate just before first bounce to avoid pre-game drivel. Back in the kitchen slather the pork skin with salt making sure you work all that flavour into the cracks. Whack that pig onto a wire rack and into that oven which should be hotter than Alice Springs in January.

Then sit down and try and remain calm as The Enemy slam on two goals seemingly under no pressure whatsoever. Feel slightly more relieved as White puts himself in the clear and goals. Yell excitedly as Kennedy and Hannebury boot two majors. Curse loudly as Parker fumbles a golden opportunity and splash beer on your couch as Mitchell cocks up a sitter and hits the post. Raise fist triumphantly as Tippett tackles and goals.

With the first quarter over and a lead established it’s time to return to the pork. Turn down the temperature to 200 degrees, open the oven door and try not to choke to death on the smoke billowing out. Marvel at the crackling. Chuck some water in the bottom of the tray, can’t have our oinky friend drying out. By now the siren’s gone and if you’re not there already back on the couch you should be.

Fifteen minutes later you’ll be feeling pretty comfortable as the Swans put on a footy masterclass. With Kieran Jack running rampant your attention can be drawn to the likes of the ever dependable Pyke and the new kid Lamb slamming in the six pointers. Hannebury will be dominating all over the ground. Still there’ll be some nerves as Grundy gets caught shambling out of the back half. The Enemy will try and make a rally late in the quarter. Don’t be alarmed they make nothing of it.

Thirty two points up and it’s back to the kitchen. Pork’s looking good so lightly oil some spuds and pumpkin. Throw them onto the baking tray along with whole baby onions, skin on. Grab more beer and return to prime position.

Sunday arvo wouldn’t be the same without a brief nap. The Swans will do just that managing only two goals and a behind. Still like your dinner things are coming along nicely and The Enemy will be having a hard time getting to the sticks as well. The defence will get a brief workout but cool heads will prevail. Just before the final break you’ll watch as Mummy cops one across the jaw leaving the big man looking sore and angry.

Because there’s nothing to do in the kitchen you might be tempted to worry now and go into a shouting episode as The Enemy gets on a hot streak scoring two goals and some near misses. Remain calm, the defence is fine and that pork needs to be pulled out of the oven. Loosely cover the meat with foil and slide back into the living room just in time to see Kieran Jack and Tippett even the ledger. The siren will go signalling a win and that’s your cue to return to the kitchen.

Cook up some greens, carve up that pork, smash up the crackling and pour on the gravy. Serve it up with a bit of red and white. Brilliant.

About Tom Bally

Born in 1834 Tom Bally was instrumental in establishing the rules of the modern game. It's a little known fact and the rare times he talks about it all he'll say is "that bloody Wills chap got me full of grape one night and the next thing I know he's peacocking around Richmond Paddock like he dreamt up the whole thing on his lonesome. Still I got the last laugh didn't I eh? Introducing the Umpire and all that."

Comments

  1. I wish I could have what you’re having TB. Glad you enjoyed it so much, but it left a sour taste in my mouth. Cheers.

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