AFL Round 7 – Brisbane v West Coast: The rain in ‘Bane falls gently on the slain

Brisbane Lions versus West Coast Eagles

2:10 pm, Saturday, 11 May 13, 2013

The Gabba.

 

At midday it began to rain! In Brisbane in May! The Navigator and I were bemused, to say the least, but we had decided to go to the game. so added an umbrella to the cool-bag, got into the car and drove off. This also was a new experience, but having bussed it so often and seeing the enticing empty blocks with a sign offering parking for $20 I had finally convinced The Navigator that I could park close to the ground and he could then walk with ease despite his walking stick and other non-specific ailments. I had the Record price in my top pocket, and we arrived at the seating area with a minimum of fuss and without needing the umbrellas.

 

The Gabba ground was lovely as ever, slightly greener than a fortnight earlier, and soon the teams were out for the warm-up, which gave me the chance to observe Naitanui’s choice of bluish boots – quite a nice touch. I also filled in some time trying to count the number of sponsors’ signs, but gave up at twenty. And that didn’t include the television shouters! What a load for the AFL or someone to carry, I thought…Macdonald’s was offering a quarter pounder for each quarter that Brisbane won, which I thought was a fine line between a reward and punishment, but as we were unlikely to avail ourselves in any case it didn’t matter.

Three West Coast supporters arrived to sit in front of us, the visitor asking ‘Where’s the crowd?’ Given the weather the crowd seemed not too bad, actually. For Brisbane supporters who are having a poor run at present, and the inclement weather the crowd seemed not too bad.

 

The teams ran through the banners and I shuddered inwardly again at the sight of the almost all-white ‘strips’ players are dressed in this year. Who designed them? They are awful! Big, strong, men forced to play a rugged game in almost all-white just doesn’t make sense. It was manageable in the olden days when one team wore black and the other white shorts. At least there was a reason for that: we were watching on black and white television sets if we were not at the game. Breaking the banner was obviously more fun for the Junior Lions than for the players – it was left almost in tatters and the kids were jubilant.

 

The game began and after less than five minutes we were treated to Josh Kennedy’s ‘rooster’ run-up – and a goal, so there is no point laughing at the stutter. At the same time a very black cloud appeared from the south, perhaps an omen, and soon the lights were switched on and light rain fell. I don’t think that it had much effect on the game, however. The contests between Kennedy and Merrett and Naitanui and Leuenberger throughout the game were consistently good. At the end of the first quarter the Eagles led 26 – 18, but it had been a good spectacle: skills on show, leaps and tackles aplenty and we actually looked like having a game!

 

And so it was, for a change. This was perhaps the best game I have seen at the Gabba in three years. Until the last ten minutes both teams showed endeavour and discipline, and the umpires were able to let the game flow. The ball often went from one end of the field to the other as it should and the scores stayed close enough to keep the crowd engrossed if not up and out of their seats.

 

Sights that remain in my memory: Kennedy’s first goal, Cox’s screamer of a mark that led to him wearing a headband for most of the game (after crashing heavily to the ground), Bewick’s lovely running goal from the centre square, the crowd’s reaction to Black’s entry into the game and then excitement when he goaled to put the Lion’s in front two minutes into the final quarter. Ahhh – that’s footy!

 

However it was not to be Brisbane’s day. Half-way through the final quarter Jonathan Brown goaled to put the Lions in front by a point and then they faded, or succumbed to the relentless pressure of the Eagles. Merrett, who had been mighty in defence made a fatal hand-pass mistake, which resulted in a goal to West Coast and the game was over.

 

The Navigator and I were happy, however. It had been a good game to watch and our car was safe and we drove home without difficulty. We might even do it again in a fortnight!

 

 

West Coast: 4.2  7.2  10.3  17.6  (108)

Brisbane:  3.0  6.6  9.9  12.10  (82)

Goals:

West Coast: Kennedy 4, Lecras 3, Sheppard 2, Naitanui 2, Darling, Dalziell, Shuey, Rosa.

Brisbane: Brown 2, Golby 2, Bewick 2, McGrath, Zorko, Lisle, Redden, Leuenberger, Black.

Best:

West Coast: Kennedy, Naitanui, Selwood, Glass.

Brisbane: Hanley, Leunberger, Lisle, Golby

Umpires: Schmitt, Leppard, Bannister.

Official crowd: 17,614.

My votes:3 Naitanui (West Coast) 2 Leunberger (Brisbane) 3 Kennedy (West coast)

Comments

  1. PeterSchumacher says:

    If only the Lions had won it would have been a perfect Saturday.

  2. I suspect Bill’s mum has jumped ship, giving 2 Eagles players 3 votes no less!

  3. Peter_B says:

    Lovely report Glenda. Very fair and balanced. Most of the local scribes had Priddis and Hurn as our best. Noticed they weren’t in your best. What did you make of them?
    For my part it is one of the few games I have not seen live at the ground or on TV in recent years. I decided that a bad day’s golf was better than an uncertain day’s footy. The replay was easier to watch once I knew the result.

  4. Oops, Igor! Kennedy is third, which means only 1 vote -but I did like his kicking style!

  5. It’s hard to get a vote from my mum Igor, I would have let that one go through to the keeper. You’ll have Kennedy after you now.

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