THE PRE WRAP – ROUND XVI

FOR THE PHILOSOPHICAL MARNGROOK FAN

What a week it’s been in Footy Eddie.  What goes around, comes around.  In a scene that would be familiar from his playing days at Tigerland when La Geisha was coaching, the Playing Group fronted the Essendon Coach with a few items that they felt was tearing at the fabric of the Club.  But the malaise is deeper than that at Whingy Hill.  With more dirty linen being hung out each day, the Football Club is on the nose with the Bowling Club and they’ve been asked to clean out their lockers.  With factional in-fighting to rival Trades Hall at its best and a steady murmur of discontent along Puckle Street, the shift to John Pascoe Fawkner Reserve appears more imminent with each public denial.  Some of the less sophisticated – although it would seem widely travelled – members are clamouring for a more direct method of dealing with the core issue distracting the club at the moment, although it may take them a while to convince the Appalling Football League that bringing back the guillotine is the way to go.

Like everyone wondering what the hell is going on between Coach Knighta and the adjudicating maggots, we reviewed the 50m penalties paid against The Dons in their match against Melbourne.  Technically they were there, but they’re not always paid.  And as Max Walker said when Chapperelli asked him to give a recognized batsman an easy single to get a tail-end bunny on strike – “Sure Boss, but we’ll make him earn ‘em, eh?”.  That’s right Max, you have to earn ‘em.  And that’s all the Essendon players were doing to their Melbourne counterparts – making them earn ‘em.  Of course, SOTG may argue that if they’d been in front they wouldn’t have to worry about scragging after the contest was completed, and there’s a great deal of truth in that.  Letting frustration show should be counter to team discipline, especially if the adjudicators are obviously targeting it.  It wasn’t a good look any more than Coach Knighta’s Citrus Huddle performance.  And even though we bailed him up for a gratuitous remark at the time, Blighty’s advice from an old coach to a young coach back in Essendon’s disastrous visit to the City of Light a couple of rounds back is worth repeating. .  When you cop a thumping the 1st thing you should do is look at yourself as a coach.  Look at your structures; look at what you said to people through the week.  Until you get yourself sorted out you can never help your team.

But at the end of the day, it must be bringing a tear to the eye of every Football Follower to see such a great club brought to its knees in such unseemly circumstances.  (Your insincerity will catch up to you one day Wrap – Ed)

And it must be tough on Golly Josh Fraser.  He can’t convince Mick to give him that one more game to take him to the 200 Club.  Meanwhile, at sentimental Whingy Hill they’ve given Tripper Fletcher another season.  They even reckon he was in line for All Australian selection this year before his two suspensions.  It must be difficult to coach purposefully amongst such deep-rooted delusion.

With the hair flicking, the aquarium footage of the smartest person in soccer (After Sepp Blatter surely Wrap – Ed), yellow cards and penalty shootouts behind us, the World Circus has faded from our consciousness.  Well, not quite.  Explaining the reason for a free at Under 11 level in the Frankston & Mornington Peninsular League, the double knee reconstructed dad umpiring the match called it about right  – “against you number 56.  You dived”.  Our Great Game appears to be in safe hands.

Away from the Fatal Shore the Aussies are mixing it with the best of them.  Well, maybe not at Lords.  Mark Webber has had to swallow his Red Bull and apologize to his teammate for calling him 2nd best.  But the saddest thing is what’s happening to the Aussie contingent on Le Tour.  Never convinced some of these crashes aren’t orchestrated, Cadel is struggling with his broken elbow and Renshaw has been red carded for a Glasgow kiss on an opponent, who no doubt was asking for one.  And are we alone in our growing dislike for yellow Jersey wearer Andy Sckleck?

But enough of my gabbin.  They’re slugging it out pound for pound in the XVIth Round, so let’s see who’s going to be the top hound.

The Chardonnays v The Handbags in the City of Churches tonight.  The Cats have left out the aging Milburn and dropped Duncan to make room for Moon Doggie and Joel Corey.  The Crows have dropped The Porpoise and Armstrong to make way for the veteran McLeod and Mackay.   They’re talking mathematic possibilities along Rundle Mall and they’ve certainly being playing some Inspired Football, albeit against Cellar Dwellers Essendon, & West Coast, and the less than consistent Melbourne.  The Moggies are close to full strength and have only been bested thrice this season.  It’s difficult to see The Free Settlers being in front when they ring the Final Bell.  The Pivotonians.  The main interest here will be maggot McInerney’s performance.  Making a late but concerted run for the Beitzel, he has a great chance for bonus votes if he can keep the Rabid Adelaide Mob baying for full four quarters.

Collingwood v St Kilda at The Peoples’ Ground at the traditional time.  The Sainters regain Goddard & Kossy.  The Pies have had to bring in Neon Leon & Macaffer.  The St Kilda Skipper will be better for the run and the rest of the forward line knows what to do.  The Carringbush defence looks a bit undermanned.  Sure, they’re no slouches, but McQualter & Jones have lifted to match Montagna and Nasty Milne over the last few weeks.  No doubt Shaw will be doing some poetry reading to young Milne at some stage during the game, and this alone will be worth the train fare down from Wunghnu.  It’s at the other end of the ground where the outcome is less certain.  Gram & Ball get to renew acquaintances and the icon Zac Dawson has to mind the livewire Beams.  Sidebottom & Diddums Didak are deadly goalsneaks.  Cloke’s run and contested marking ability will be missed across half forward; his shooting on goal won’t.  The question is: can Dawes & Leroy Brown get enough ball inside fifty to make a difference?  We’ve seen Dawes steadiness from set shots and if Big Leroy can chip in with a few it should tip the scales Carringbush’s way in the scoring stakes.  But it’s in the midfield where the match is likely to be decided.  Swan & Thomas are on fire, but so are Del Santo, Goddard and St Kilda’s Spiritual Leader.  Big Darren will have a say in where the ball hits the ground from the ball ups.  Look, we’re saying, as much as Rossy Lyon will be talking it down, there might be a bit too much pressure on Big Nick to perform.  It’s a toughie, but we’re going for the under dog here: The Woodsmen in a high class thriller.  The Channel Rove broadcast picks up proceedings at 14.30 hrs.  Get the weekend shopping over early and forget digging up the vegetable patch for the spring planting.  This is the Match of The Round.

The Leafblowers v The Gorillas down at Hork Park at the traditional time.  Big Bad Jonathon Brown’s back in for the trip and his old sparring mate from Hampden League, Goose McGuire.  They’ve wielded the axe out at Waverly.  Shoenmakers & Sewell paying the penalty for The Hawkers last quarter fade out against The Cats.  Someone had to go to make room for the return of the Captain, and he’s been joined by Whitecross.  Stratton v The Fev should be worth riding your bike across from Queenstown for.  The young Hawk is gathering an impressive belt of scalps and they have him down in the same class as Langford & Moore around at Glenferrie Oval.  There’s a question mark over Buddy, but isn’t he a living question mark?  Brisbane?  What about them?  They’re just not playing good Footy.  We’ve marked them no way José around here in The Wrapcave.  And has been The Bagmen’s want of late, their consciences have got the better of them.  Competing with a northward surging Bourse, they’ve put The Mayblooms out to $1.26.  Grab as much as you can before they change their minds.  Without doubt, The Hawkers are The Wrap Investment Opportunity of The Round.

The Born To Rule Bombers v The Wavering Weagles on the Shifting Sands of Ethelred Stadium on Saturday night.  Not since Tweedledee challenged Tweedledum to a game of tiddlywinks have we witnessed a contest of this magnitude.   The Coasters, vying for their first ever Coveted Sylvan Shield, face a Danger Game against an Essendon Outfit riven by Self Doubt and Factionalism.  The revolving door at the Bomberland selection table sees the return of Melksham, Bumbleton and Tripper Fletcher.  The Eagles have made one change.  It wasn’t Eddie The Eagle, but it would have been tempting.  At least it would have saved an airfare.  It will be worth hitching down from Peechelba to catch The Nat on Tripper.  The importance the Appalling Football League has placed on this match is reflected in the selection of Scotty McLaren as the senior maggot.  Losing ground in the Beitzel due to suspension he’s sure to be seeking bonus votes.  The 50m count could go through the roof at Docklands, and if he can get Coach Knighta to give him the meerkat treatment by the 1st Huddle he could leap into favouritism.  The Bagmen have The Marshmallows at $1.42, and you’d expect them to win.  However, if The Coasters do cause The Boilover, there’ll be no holding the Madame Defarges gathered outside the Puckle Street Patisserie.  We’re going for The Homeside, mainly because we don’t think The Visitors can win.

The Sons of The West v The Power From Port for the Channel Rove match up at Darwin.  Port have a rebound coach but The Doggies just have too much at stake here.  The dropping of Carr from The Tealers would suggest the new coach is going for the aspirins.  He’ll need more than the aspirins by the time The Boys of The Bulldog Breed have finished with his charges.  And at $1.17 we have more evidence of a Bagmen brain fade.  The Bullies from us here at The Wrap.

The Silvertails v The Lakers under cover for the early one on Sunday.  The Playing Group around at Visy Park would have had a decent old shake-up during the week.  While it was amusing to see them flogged last round, they’re really better than that.  They’ve finally woken up that O’hAilpin & Thornton are only along for the ride, and they’ve regained the undisciplined Waite and the promising Warnock.  Make no mistake, it will be a hard fought battle but we expect The Bluebaggers to have too many forward options for The Swans.  Having said that, The Bloods aren’t without a chance, and if Adam The Goodes is on target, he’ll have a big say in the outcome.  It’s Cartoon for us here in Wrapland, but not with a lot of confidence..

Richmond v North Melbourne on The Big Stage at the traditional time on Sunday.  The Tiges have won their last four, the last two against September Contenders.  North have lost their last two, both against September Contenders.  This is a Danger Game for Richmond.  Underdogs at their previous 15 matches this season, and strongly tipped to go through the season winless, they’re lukewarm favourites to win this one.  And while it can be said that their two wins against fancied opposition occurred when their opponents squandered opportunities, they still had to make the most of those gaps in the traffic.  With the promising Griffith sidelined for the remainder of the season, The Punt Road Brains’ Trust have put the beanpole Vickery in the goal square on Thompson and moved Jumping Jack Riewoldt out to CHF.  Cousins has come into the centre replacing the Errant Jackson.  He’s on Boomer Harvey, and will need to match the Roos Skippers output, or at least be accountable one-on-one.  The Norsemen have a beanpole of their own, and Thursfield spots Goldstein 20cm and 20kg in the other goalsquare.  Hansen & Deledio are both in great form, in fact there are even match-ups all over the ground.  Being the hunted will be a test for The Tiger Cubs, but we’re sticking with them.  Struggletown to win in another thriller for TLSPRF.  Jumping Jack to boot a lazy six.

Fremantle v Melbourne over on the Indian Ocean for the late one.  The Barry Crockers haven’t looked all that Top Fourish since their trip to the City of Churches where the Chardonnays gave them a dusting.  Their percentage suggests that even when they’re winning they’re not putting sides away.  They rely a lot on a few stars giving them a lift.  Pavlich has been in eclipse the last few weeks and they’ve lost the Dynamo Barlow.  They regain Tarrant to bolster the defence.  The Fuchsias come off a good win against Essendon.  They faded in the Last Quarter, which may or may not mean anything.  They’re a young team with a few stars.  They play hot and cold Football.  This far from home and with The Anchormen back in their Gouldian Finch outfits it’s hard to give The Dees much credence.  OTR it has to be Freo.

Good tipping and even better punting.

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

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. Andrew Fithall says:

    And for all Marngrook Footy Show fans, particularly those who haven’t been able to get channel 31 because of poor reception, Channel 31 has now gone digital. I found it last night on Channel 44???

    Andrew

  2. John Mosig says:

    Great News Andrew. It’s my favourite Footy Show. I’ll give it a go next week. Thanks for drum.

  3. John Butler says:

    Well Wrap, you were right about the Magpies.

    Will it be safe to walk the streets on Monday?

  4. John Mosig says:

    Right about the Maggies, wrong about the Bombers. How bad can it get out there at Whingy Hill before they swing the axe?

    Never mind walking the streets on Monday. If they win this 2010 Flag they’ll trash the whole of inner Melbourne. Did you catch Eddie chatting up the players in the rooms after the match?

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