AFLW Round 2 – Western Bulldogs v Adelaide: Procrastination into Pace
Friday Night Footy. The prime viewing slot and the perfect opportunity to unwind on the couch with a couple of coldies.
Well, back in BC times (aka Before Children) it was anyway. Alas, getting the derriere to the foam filled delight that is the couch by game time is quite the challenge post offspring – and so it proves again tonight. The lengthy evening dawdle of the youngsters hurries for no one. Women or Men, the excruciatingly slow night time routine does not discriminate.
FINALLY they get through the bath and the wife takes one for the team by volunteering to put the young lad to bed. I get the daughter in her pjs and get the hair brushed (hers, not mine – brushing mine is a distant memory!) and we assume position in the lounge room to take in the game.
Well, I’ll take in the game. The daughter is more interested in the iPad. It seems the AFL still has some work to do in our house!
By the time we get settled the game is well underway. I didn’t get a chance to take in much of the first round so this is my first real look at the standard and I have to say I’m impressed. There are times when the play disintegrates into a bit of a scrap, but when it opens up both teams move the ball up and down the outer wing with pace and skill.
Unfortunately both teams squander several chances in front of goal, but given the breeze favouring the Bulldogs they’d be disappointed going into quarter time at 0.5 to Adelaide’s 1.2.
As the second quarter begins Adelaide are clearly on top, they are much harder at the footy and seem to have a lot more pace. They are moving the ball with confidence and look far more dangerous in attack. Erin Phillips is clearly a cut above with her long background in professional sport, and Marinoff picking up where she left off last week.
Late in the quarter Sarah ‘Tex’ Perkins nails a cracking set shot considering the stiff breeze and Adelaide goes into half time 11 points up. What a story Sarah Perkins is, devastated at being passed over at the draft, she has dropped 40kgs and has an incredible presence in the forward arc for the Crows. Still solid in build, I’d hazard a guess that she would’ve copped her fair share of awfulness and had some dark times over her journey so far. In the space of a week she has become a cult hero and found a place where she belongs. More than that – in that forward line she can just be, all aggression and instinct, and she is loved by all and sundry for it. Just wonderful to watch.
Despite the best efforts of Bulldog stars Emma Kearney and Ellie Blackburn, they just can’t get back into the contest after half time. Adelaide are remarkably cohesive considering they are a composite side that has prepared for the most part separately in Adelaide and Darwin.
Late in the third Jenna, McCormick keeps the ball from rolling through for a behind and doubles back and around to slot a fantastic snap shot from the pocket, and this is quickly followed by a goal from Kellie Gibson to give Adelaide what ends up being a match winning buffer.
The final highlight comes as the final siren sounds and television coverage takes in the wonderful scenes of jubilation from the Adelaide players. A comprehensive win away from home against the early premiership favourites clearly means a huge amount to these girls.
I’m struck by footage of Sarah Perkins shaking hands and sharing hugs with the opposition. Far from going through the motions as you often see in professional sport, the appreciation and affection here seems incredibly genuine.
I think a hug from Sarah would be a delightful thing.
Western Bulldogs 0.5 1.6 2.9 2.11 (23)
Adelaide 1.2 3.5 6.5 7.6 (48)
Western Bulldogs: Brennan, McLeod.
Adelaide: Perkins 2, Sedunary, Killian, McCormick, Gibson, Foley.
Adelaide: Marinoff, Phillips, Holmes, Killian, Sedunary, Perkins
Western Bulldogs: Blackburn, Kearney, McLeod, Scott, Spark.
UMPIRES Cheever, Burns, Mirabile CROWD 7,669
OUR VOTES Marinoff (Adelaide) 3 Votes, Phillips (Adelaide) 2 Votes, Sedunary (Adelaide) 1 Votes.