GigStuff 53


by Andrew Gigacz

I’d like to start with a question this week. A week ago, commentators everywhere were worryingly asking if the Gold Coast’s disastrous start to its life in the AFL was going to put off all those players who are going to be wooed by GWS. Now that the Suns have won a game way earlier than many expected and has showed dramatic improvement in just a month of footy, should we be worried that players are going to be flocking to the Giants because early success is surely likely?


And before I remove my tongue from my cheek (actually, that’s never gonna happen is it?), let me just point out that the signs for the Suns are even better than most would have imagined. To the point where the Gold Coast are now in line for a Grand Final berth.

How can that be? By virtue of the fact that the Suns were sitting on 2.2 (14) at quarter-time against Port and WON. We all know that last year, with only TWO exceptions, every side that ended its first quarter at 2.2 went on to lose that game. The only exceptions to that rule were St Kilda and Collingwood, last year’s Grand Finalists.


Gold Coast’s inaugural win was just one of seven games that went deep into the last quarter before being decided. In fact, it was a surprise we didn’t get a draw in amongst it all. But we are still on world-record pace for the most drawful season in history. Three draws every five rounds will give us 12 by Round 20. I’ll be happy with that.

Some other little records that Round 5 threw up:

  • The lowest score of the round was 76. Not since Round 20, 2000 have we seen such a high “round minimum”.
  • But we didn’t just get a high low score in Round 5, we also got a low high score. The highest score of the round was Geelong’s 117, making it the lowest “round maximum” since Sydney’s 116 was the top score of Round 18 in 2006.
  • And it will therefore come as not too much of a surprise that the weekend’s largest margin of 30 points (by Collingwood over Essendon) was the lowest “round maximum margin” since Round 17, 2005.
  • And with a such a low round maximum and a such high round minimum score, the gap between the round’s highest and lowest scores was an amazingly small 41 points. That is the lowest gap ever recorded in a round of seven or more games. Indeed the last time we had a smaller gap between the highest and lowest scores of a single round was Round 5 of 1970, when the highest score was 88 and the lowest 49 (yes, I did say 39 at first – typo!), a difference of just 39. All six of those games were played on the one Saturday in Melbourne and it will come as no surprise to any of you, I’m sure, that we had half an inch of rain on that day.

So what’s behind this convergence of scores and margins? Well my theory is that the scientists of “structures” at each of the clubs are all moving towards the current success model (i.e. Collingwood’s) which I believe to be a convergence of Saints Footy at one end of the spectrum and Cats Footy at the other. If all the teams’ strategists meet in the middle of this spectrum we end up with 17 teams following very similar game plans, with the score differential perhaps coming down to execution and the good old “bounce of the ball”.


Underlining the influence this column has on the real world of footy, two (and almost three) sides took notice of last week’s lamentation that this season had not featured a three-figure losing score. Congratulations to Port Adelaide and North Melbourne who took up the call to arms and posted losing scores of 101 and 103 respectively. (Incidentally North’s total was 14.19 and the last four times that score has been registered, it has been a losing one.) And an honourable mention to the Hawks, whose losing score against Geelong was 98.


And with that Hawthorn score, 98 takes the lead in Score Wars 2011. It’s now popped up five times, ahead of 84 and 79 which have been seen four times each.


Freo’s 7 point thriller and the Saints’ 13 point scrappy win over Brisbane mean that 7 and 13 have now joined 11, 20 and 71 as the equal second-most registered margins of this year. Each of those have come up twice, but the three draws means that zero is still ahead, Carn the Noughts!


PISCES – You’d better get a grip on yourself because it would only take one letter for you to go to PIECES.


The score at quarter-time between Port Adelaide and the Gold Coast was an indication of not only whence the Suns come, but also the peak they would reach at the end of the game. At the first break, they trailed 5.3 to 2.2 and 5322 is the postcode of both Sunlands and Golden Heights.


Many observers weren’t sure where Gold Coast’s first win would come from but the word from those in the know was that all the Suns had to do to get a win was play Port Adelaide. And it shows in the fact that SUNS AGAINST POWER is an anagram of PRESTO! SNAG US A WIN.

About Andrew Gigacz

Well, here we are. The Bulldogs have won a flag. What do I do now?


  1. Gigs,

    “…when the highest score was 88 and the lowest 39, a difference of just 39.” – You might want to check your sources… ;)

  2. John weldon says:

    Gigs there are statistics damn statistics and then there are people like Kat, who arejust good at maths. 88-39 has always equalled 39 for me, but then I went to school in bray brook. Come to think of it so did you!

  3. OK! OK! It was typo folks.

    The lowest that week was 49. Will correct that in the post and make all three of these comments look silly.

  4. And to Kat and JW, I say: Just testing, and you both passed. Well done!

  5. John Butler says:

    ‘It was typo’

    Does that make two?

    I think you’re onto something with the Theory of Convergence, Professor.

  6. Andrew Fithall says:

    I am not a critic – I just want to congratulate you on correct use of the word “whence”. Unlike most football writers and commentators, you didn’t precede it with “from”. Well done Gigs.

  7. Thanks Andrew. The misuse of the word whence has always bugged me. I seem to remember Peter Landy often talking about players kicking the ball “back from whence it came”.

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