AFL Round 19 – Review: The Wrap

THE WRAP – ROUND XIX – THE FUTURE COLLIDES WITH THE PAST ROUND

WHERE LIFE IMITATES FOOTBALL

What a round it’s been in Footy Wrappers.  On Friday we witnessed The Future & The Past colliding head on; and The Future won.  Some SOTG have suggested that The Future lagged behind The Present for most of The Season and didn’t deserve to be in September, while others – mainly Last Race Desperadoes – feel a late entry wildcard should be their reward.

On Saturday The Future again clashed with The Past.  Up at Skoda Stadium, it was The Orangemen who kicked 19-10 against The Bleak City Basket Weavers’ 12-15.  The Striped Marvels totally demolished The Top of The Table Mayblooms on a cold Winter’s afternoon on The Paddock That Grew.  The Gold Coast let The Future down somewhat as The Screaming Eagles racked up an impressive 20-10 to The Sunbeams’ 17-11.  To wind up the day, The Future won convincingly up under the palms, and even more convincingly under cover.  The Past took quite a beating on Friday & Saturday.

Come Sunday and The Brave Bulldogs took it, albeit unsuccessfully, right up to TRP.  The Power demonstrated, not for the first time this season, that in The True Port Adelaide Tradition, They’ll Never Stop, Stop, Stop Till They’re Top, Top, Top.  And once more the rubber band on the Bombers twin Rolls Royce Merlin engines snapped, as The Magpies went on a Cakewalk.

Have you ever thought about the profile of the Footy Fan?  How they vary from club to club?  Take those Sleepy Hollow Faithful for instance.  They’re rational to start with.  Devoted is a word that springs to mind for some reason.  (They’ve got a lot to be devoted about Wrap – Ed)  They’re good listeners, and when they do talk there’s a timelessness about the choosing of their words.  A deliberation.  Almost like they’ve been here since before the beginning of time, and they’ll be here long after the ends of time.  Beneath it all there’s an inner strength built on righteousness.  Fair dinkum, get them in a group of more than three and it becomes positively pastoral.  After a couple of minutes you’re reaching around in your overcoat pocket for the psalm book.  They know their Footy, and barrack on the terraces and from the stands as fair and as tough as their team plays on the field.  Yet there’s a whimsicalness about them that belies their inner strength.  An aura of steadfastness emanates from the crispness of the Navy & White Hoops they deck themselves out in on match days that takes you right back to Corio Bay on a late Summer afternoon.  The welcome sea breeze tossing up the white caps on the cobalt blue of the Eastern Beach.  The Geelong Man.  You’d let one marry your daughter.  The Geelong woman?  You’d marry her yourself.  (You’ve always been a sucker for rationality haven’t you Wrap – Ed)

We honestly thought we must have declared war on New Zealand the other night.  When we were told that an important announcement was to interrupt the 7.30 Report.  (It would be interesting to know if other programs were interrupted by the same announcement – Ed)  Or non-announcement to be technically correct.  You see, here was Leigh Sales in the middle of a hot interview with Russel Crowe and the chief of the AFL legal department, or drugs watch program – or whoever it was that was left there minding the shop during the Northern Hemisphere high season – comes on to read out from a tightly-worded prepared statement that the long awaited ASADA Report was with the AFL and that they would read it.  (Actually it was a dull piece on whether Melbourne should have a deepwater port at Hastings which was interrupted; but why spoil a good story with the truth, eh? – Ed)  At least Ch 7 went to the trouble of pumping a bit drama into The Weapon’s exposé.  (Which could also have been delivered in a tightly worded statement – Ed)

Speaking of This Whole Sorry Saga, what’s your take on the revelations over the weekend?  You know, the ones The Sage headlined as Messiah or Pariah.  We’re going with Champ or Chump her at The Wrap.  Fair dinkum, we’re starting to come around to believing Shoeless Jim is innocent of any wrong.  If you can believe the utterings of those who handled the procurement of whatever it was they were invoiced for out at Whingy Hill, he clearly didn’t have a clue what he was doing or what was going on.  Not a schmick.  For that matter, no one out at Melrose Drive seems to have had a grasp of what was going on.  Surely that makes everything that happened out there where the Mountains meet The Peneplain kosher?  No?  Well someone better tell Sir Frank Downright, because the last we heard it was the cornerstone of the Downright Lie & Procrastynate defence.

And the closer we scrutinize this tale of woe, the clearer the picture becomes.  Are we alone in identifying other figures emerging from the smoke and reflected in the mirrors?  Figures not related to Whingy Hill Mob.  Sure, The Bombers tried one on, and sure they’ve been devious and arrogant about it.  On all counts they should be punished.  How many Footy Fans, SOTG, Punters & Pundits would be happy with the EFC being denied 1st & 2nd round draft picks for three years and a $3m fine paid at a mill a year over the period.  The coach, as the perpetrator of the scheme, and the person from day 1 has said he’ll take full responsibility, would have to be suspended, say for three years.  How the EFC deal with him financially in that period would be up to them, but from all accounts he’s hardly on the bones of his arse.  The Dons should be happy with that.  After all, they have a coach in waiting, a successful one at that, and a Premiership Captain.  The Golden Child is still a young man, and can come back into the fold officially after serving bis penance.  They might even find the next James Hird amongst those late draft picks.  Remember, they recruited Bambi at #79 remember.  How to deal with the images and reflections that are not of the Essendon Football Club we should wait until the smoke clears.  They might get off scot-free initially, but it’s likely that history won’t judge them kindly.

Speaking of smoke clearing, any one pick up that the report is an Interim Report?  From experience of reports, an interim report can be a fairly nebulous piece of writing.  We’ve stopped the boats.  Scrapped the tax.  Now we’re just waiting for the Final Report to come out.

Maggot Watch I.  Are you getting used to balls being dropped & thrown, players being held, every infringement under the sun being ignored in the close-in encounters?  In the packs & scrimmages?  Even the one on one contests?  In the name of keeping the game flowing?  Us too, especially the holding.  But let a player stray a centimetre over some imaginary ‘free space‘ when a player’s taking a free and bang!  Fifty metres.

The Baggy Greens are getting on with it.  In a fashion.  We fell asleep counting the number of times those brave England bats prodded down some pretty innocuous Aussie bowling.  Looks like the weather will win and the protagonists will have to settle for a draw.

And those Aussie swimmers are amongst the Gold.  Not that that has set the nation alight.   They really didn’t do themselves any favours when they blotted their copy book in London.  As Joseph hall once said: A reputation once broken may possibly be repaired, but the world will always keep their eyes on the spot where the crack was.

But enough of my gabbin’.  Let’s see who’s hungry & lean after Round XIX.

The Kangaroos v The Bangkok Guccis.  Are we alone in thinking that John Fahey and his ever vigilant team of investigators may be looking in the wrong cupboard for the uncle dougs?  And that they’d be better off rummaging around in the rubble of The Arden Street Gasometer?  Either that, or ban the use of magic elixirs from The Game.  Just how many hearts have The Shinboners broken this season?  How many tipping competitions have they wrecked?  How many bank accounts have they drained?  (You left out how many delusions have they shattered Wrap – Ed)  We’ll get to that in a minute Ed.  Look, North must be wondering whatever happened to Season 2013.  And how they’re going to cope should Boomer Harvey’s batteries ever run down.  Then there was their opponents: The Sleepy Hollow Millionaires.  This is the 4th time this season that they’ve been beaten by teams below them.  And yes Wrappers, last time we looked, Collingwood was and is below them.  This doesn’t happen to teams that have sat near the Top of The Table all year, and are spoken of as Genuine Contenders, and the only team that has beaten Hawthorn twice.  And before you butt in Ed, we’ll talk about that later too. Collingwood, Brissy, Port and now North have all KO’ed The Aging Champs.   Tommy Waterhouse is offering a round of golf with Peter Baker Finch for anyone who wants to take them outright for The Flag.  They have Port Adelaide down at Kardinia Park at the traditional time for Round XX.  The Boners hop aboard the Overlander for the middle match on the Sunday at Crow Park.

The Giants v The Fuchsias.  This was the no-brainer.  The Breakfast Pointers led at every change and wrapped it up with a 7-goal Final Stanza.  Jeremy Cameron continued to excite, which would entitle SOTG to ask why Sheedy’s so keen to recruit Buddy to stand in the goalsquare.  Sure he’s a big name, but big names cast big shadows.  And we all know nothing blooms in the shade.  (Besides, Buddy will always be seen as a Hawthorn turncoat – Ed)  That’s right Oh Font of Wisdom.  The 8,308 who were in the rooms after the game to follow the bouncing ball as they sung the club’s stirring battle hymn will want to follow their boys as they grow into men.  Not a foreign legion of discards and marquee names.  It didn’t work in the early days at Sydney and The Bad News Bears, so why should it work out in the Shadows of The Blue Mountains?  Out where they’ve had roundball and knuckle dragging mixed in with their Farax?  (And it didn’t work with Israel Folau* – E)  The Fuchsias are reboard the team bus to face that ribbon of fate – the Pacific Highway.  They’re due at Wally World for a spin on the Metricon next Saturday night.  The Giant Killers are off the Western Extremities of The Fatal Shore to take on The Barry Crockers to wind up proceedings.

The Mayblooms v The Striped Marvels.  The blogsites have been bombarded with the question – is Hawthorn Richmond’s bitch?  For the second time in two season’s The Tiges have dismembered the Highly Fancied Hawks.  And as they join Geelong as the only team to have toppled The Family Club this season, other questions are raised.  Are the Hawks a one trick pony – kick it long to Buddy, Cyril & Roughie?  (That’s three tricks Wrap – Ed)  Are they susceptible to pace?  And have they lost their desire for the Pigskin?  True, anyone can have an off day; and the talk back lines were full of calls from the Leafy East on that theme.  But more rational Leafblowers were recalling how they lost The Unlosable Flag last year to a team that had an insatiable avariciousness for the leather encase air conveyance and an unmatchable leg speed.  They’l be taking it one day at a time out at Waverley until they go undercover against The Eel Race Road Seagulls next Friday night.  What can you say about The Tigers?  They were certainly up & about.  Their improvement is not measured in games lost, but how they’ve lost them.  When they jumped Sydney last week, and The Bloods hauled them in by the 1st Huddle, they produced a goalless 2nd Quarter.  Saturday saw a similar situation.  But this time they rallied and had regained the ascendency by the Citrus Huddle.  We’ll never know what Coach Hardnose put in the OT, but whatever it was it worked.  The Mustard pots opened the Final Stanza with an early goal but it was the 28 minute mark of the quarter before they managed to raise the twin calicos again.  In the meantime The Ecstatic Tiger Army had cheered through no less than six majors.  They have four more very winnable matches against The Lions (H), The Blues (H), GWS (A – danger game), and Essendon (A – but on The G)  They’re not getting ahead of themselves at Punt Road, but the win will be seen as a season Defining Victory.  They have Vossie’s Lions for the early one next Saturday.  The Squawkers are in The Pipeopener under cover on Friday.

The West Coast v The Cold Coast.  The Wedgies, as expected, took the consolation prize over in The West.   They had to work hard to do it, but with Big Coxie dominating, especially when the match was up for grabs in the last, and Josh Kennedy booting a lazy five to take him to the top of the Coleman Medal leader board, they managed to salvage something from the Season against the Valiant Suns.  The Eddie Eagles have The Flying Pharmas next Sunday under cover to kick off the Sunday segment of Round XX.  The Gold Coasters are back home to host Melbourne’s visit to Cane Toad Country.

The Miseries v The Barry Crockers.  Fair dinkum; if those Bluebaggers were any softer they’d be selling them in margarine tubs.  How they got 30,457 through the turnstiles on the foulest night Melbourne’s endured all Winter speaks more for the tenacity of the Docker Faithful than any Silvertail Steadfastness.  You’d see more backbone in a scoop net of pond life than Carlton displayed on Saturday night.  The Kreuzer was given a free rucking lesson by Big Laurie and the three Amigos amassed 29 touches and 2-3 between them.  I can’t vouch for this because I was throwing another log on the Wrap fire at the time, but Mrs Wrap swears she saw Judd go in and get his own ball.  Not that The Miseries shirked the tough stuff.  It was just that when there was a ball involved they found less stressful options.  They ripped Ballantyne’s jumper in two at one stage.  Now we know Hayden can be a regular twerp, but he is only 174cm and 78kg.  The Anchormen will be chuffed that they one, won in Melbourne, and two, kicked their second highest score for the year behind the 130 points they notched up against The Demonic Demons.  (They’ve only topped the ton on six other occasions so far in 2013: WCE 108 & 121, The Dogs 103; The Saints 100; and Collingwood 100 – Ed)  Although, some SOTG will be shaking their heads and suggesting The Purple Haze should evaluate the opposition on the night before they get too excited.  They have GWS at home in the twilight game next Sunday.  As for Mickey & The Powder Blues, they’ve challenged That Tragic Club from across the Maribyrnong to meet them at sundown on the Saturday.  And if Mickey’s wondering what he’s got himself into, imagine what The Bluebagger Faithful are wondering.

The Lion Kings v The Feeling Faints.  The Lions took the Four Points and lost their Skipper for the season.  (Troy Chaplain & Alex Rance breathe easier – Ed)  But the real story was that The Saints who ran through the banner included Ahmed Saad.  True, apart from two fine 1st-half goals he had little influence, but the poor kid must have been as nervous as slater in a chookhouse.  His first goal, shamefully, triggered unwarranted howls, and it obviously got to him.  Another off his oats, but whom St Kilda are standing by, was Stinky Milne.  He contributed one sausage and was responsible for several turnovers, to the delight of the knowledgeable Gabba crowd.  The Roys take their game down to THOF next Saturday for the early one against Struggletown.  The Seagulls help Hawthorn get over their shattered illusions from Round XIX.

The Sons of the West v The Reigning Premiers.  The Boys of The Bulldog Breed gave their Long Suffering Faithful something to look forward to in the years to come.  The Doggies may not have run The Swans to a close thing on the scoreboard, but SOTG noted that it took every ounce of skill, courage and energy reserves The Reigning Premiers could draw for them to claim Victory.  The pressure all day was intense, and it wasn’t till time-on in the Championship Quarter that The Bloods were able to gain a dominance over The Scrays that they carried through to the Final Bell.  The Sons of The West have The Powder Blues under cover in next Saturday’s gathering gloom.  The Swans have invited The Woodsmen up to the Other Olympic Stadium on Saturday night.

The Free Settlers v The Power From Port.  This was the Final Showdown at Footy Park.  It’s hard to believe there’s been XXXV of them, eh?  And it was the final showdown for The Chardonnays 2013 season.  And for all those irreligious zealots who insist there are no Football Gods, let them measure the break on, with 1 minute & 57 seconds to go, the break on Angus Monfries’ shot on an unguarded goal.  (The pop down to your local Footy Oval and see how many goes it takes to emulate it – Ed)  When Chad Wingard accepted a pass from Monfries a minute later and converted, he completed what would have to be the greatest comeback since they crossed a merino with border leicester/merino cross.  (Keep it simple for us folks here in the Big Smoke will you please Wrap – Ed)  The Free Radicals lament the season that got away.  It got off to a disrupted pre-season because of the Tippett Affair, and never regained momentum.  The Football Gods deserted them on several occasions, the match in review here being just one example.  The Power not only hold bragging rights for the City of Churches, but are set to engage in their first September Campaign since they helped launch Geelong’s rise to power back in 2007.  And if Self Belief counts for anything, they will make an honest account of themselves.  They get to test their Self Belief down at Skilled Stadium at the traditional time in Round XX.  The Pride of South Australia have invited The Shinboners over for the middle match on the Sunday.

The Woodsmen v The Dieticians.  Anyone else have that feeling of déjà vu all over again?  Isn’t this a repeat of 2011 & 2012 Bombers?  King Kong one minute, Tarzan’s chimp the next.  Fair dinkum, you’d want to swab them over the last two outings.  After Round XVII they were 2nd with a percentage of 131.4.  Two rounds later they’re 5th with a percentage of 117.4.  Even Julia Gillard, in her day, on her day, didn’t have a fall from grace as dramatic.  You still wanna talk about Football Gods?  If they had any smarts out there at Bomberland you’d think they’d be willing to throw this season onto the sacrificial pyre., take the loss of points, defend the players and bargain to save draft picks with a huge fine.  It’s not like they haven’t got the dosh.  Those fortnightly 200 table coterie lunches up at the Park Hyatt @ $10K a table must have racked up a fair sort of slush fund by now.  All that aside, like the prices at Coles, they’re going down, down, down.  They’ve got West Coast & North undercover and Carlton & Richmond on the Big Stage.  You wouldn’t think they could miss September from here, but wouldn’t it make You-Know-Who’s life a lot easier if they did?  But I tell you what, keep this up and they could be looking at an away Elimination Final at Footy Park.  How good are The Pies?  They played like peptides yesterday, but you’d be entitled to ask if The Marshmallows made them look better than they actually are.  They’re playing hot and cold.  They’ve had their share of dustings, but they in their turn have got hold of a few.  They certainly clicked yesterday, and deserved the four points and percentage.  (C’mon Wrap, they were magnificent – Ed)  They’ve got a tough month ahead.  Gary Pert will be happy to bank the gates, but Bucks might have preferred a softer run into September.  They’ve got Sydney up there followed by Hawthorn, West Coast & North at THOF.

And remember, if you read it in the Wrap you’ll know it’s not crap.

Here’re are some quotes to mix and match Wrappers.  You may not have heard the quotes, but if you haven’t heard of the authors you haven’t been living on Planet Earth.  The author are Albert Schweitzer – Khaled Hosseini – Margaret Meade – Woody Allen & John Wayne.  Khaled Hosseini?  He only wrote The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Sons Ed.  (If you don’t get the Woody Allen one straight off you’re in a bit of trouble. – Ed)

Better to get hurt by the truth than comforted with a lie.

Life’s hard.  It’s even harder when you’re stupid.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world.  Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.

I don’t know the question, but sex is definitely the answer.

Sometimes our light goes out, but is blown again into instant flame by an encounter with another human being.”

Syntax is everything isn’t it?  They say that chimpanzees, when their communication skills were developed to use blocks and symbols, already had a built-in circuitry for syntax.  So what do the following examples of the abstract communication skills of 21st Century humans tell us about evolution?  Below is a collection of signs from our Arden Street communicant.  They’re a compendium from around the Globe.

?In an office: TOILET OUT OF ORDER……. PLEASE USE FLOOR BELOW.

In a Laundromat: AUTOMATIC WASHING MACHINES: PLEASE REMOVE ALL YOUR CLOTHES WHEN THE LIGHT GOES OUT.

In a London department store: BARGAIN BASEMENT UPSTAIRS

In an office: WOULD THE PERSON WHO TOOK THE STEP LADDER YESTERDAY PLEASE BRING IT BACK OR FURTHER STEPS WILL BE TAKEN

In an office: AFTER TEA BREAK STAFF SHOULD EMPTY THE TEAPOT AND STAND UPSIDE DOWN ON THE DRAINING BOARD

Outside a second-hand shop: WE EXCHANGE ANYTHING – BICYCLES, WASHING MACHINES, ETC. WHY NOT BRING YOUR WIFE ALONG AND GET A WONDERFUL BARGAIN?

Notice in health food shop window: CLOSED DUE TO ILLNES.

?Spotted in a safari park: ELEPHANTS PLEASE STAY IN YOUR CAR.

Seen during a conference: FOR ANYONE WHO HAS CHILDREN AND DOESN’T KNOW IT, THERE IS A DAY CARE ON THE 1ST FLOOR.

?Notice in a farmer’s field: THE FARMER ALLOWS WALKERS TO CROSS THE FIELD FOR FREE, BUT THE BULL CHARGES

?On a repair shop door: WE CAN REPAIR ANYTHING. (PLEASE KNOCK HARD ON THE DOOR – THE BELL DOESN’T WORK).?

* Israel Folau (Tongan: Isileli Folau; born 3 April 1989) is an Australian professional rugby union footballer with the NSW Waratahs in Super Rugby.

Folau made his AFL debut in the GWS Giants first match in the competition, against the Sydney Swans in Round 1, 2012. He gave up on his AFL career at the end of the 2012 season, and although his time playing AFL on-field has been described as a failure, he is also credited with helping to establish the Giants in Western Sydney. – Wikipedia entry

And for this we, The Long Suffering Football Public, paid him a million dollars a year.

About John Mosig

I'm an Aussie Rules tragic who can remember, as a four year old, shaking the hand of Captain Blood in the rooms just before he ran out onto the ground after half time, as my Old Man slipped him a packet of under-the-counter Craven A cork tipped. Now it's my turn to take my grandson Ben through the ritual of character building that is the journey through PUNT ROAD to the outside world.

Comments

  1. Another triumph of persipacity Mr Wrap. I know you are a great believer in the goodness of the human spirit, but do you reckon there’s any chance that the former Sleepy Hollow incumbent has a wry smile on the dial? When he saw the Golden Child mixing with dodgy company did he suggest he come in out of the rain before he got wet? Or did he let out a bit more rope all the better for TGC to hang himself with? Just a thought.
    By the way congrats on the double dose of Shinboner in your Friday preview. Readers of the Da Vinci Code down at St F Xaviers would have picked up that they were a Wrap Code special and doubled the investment.
    A word of warning though O Prescient One, who is this Ed you keep chatting with? i often talk to myself, but when I start to hear the voices coming back its time to up the purple pills. Just a thought.

  2. Dan Crane says:

    Baker Finch given a mention? he encapsulates 90s Geelong FC for me……:)

  3. Wrap – I have a strange tingling feeling in my bones. The Tigers are certainties this week against the Lions! Horrible thought. Certainties forchrissakes! Could they? Will they? By golly they’re good for football.

  4. The Wrap says:

    PBF does epitomise the GFC circa 1990 Dan. Astute of you to pick up on it.

    And Mr B, I wish I could take credit for the code to get on The Tiges, but sadly, your second line of thinking was the more accurate. I’ve upped the purple pills.

    Dips, let me tell you, in the words of The Late Great Living Legend, Captain Blood, The Tigers are BIT. And they’re going to be BIT for some time. As you’ve so rightly noted: they’re a regular excitement machine.

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