THE WRAP – ROUND XV

WHERE LIFE IMITATES FOOTBALL

What a round it’s been in Footy Eddie.  The Woodsmen gate crashed Chokko’s farewell party, but not before The Tealers had drunk their fair share of the booze.  The Tiges, Never Minding If They Were Behind, Risked Head & Shin, And Fought & Fought And Won to open the door to the Top Four.  The Sainters did it their way up in Brissy, and The Pride of South Australia saw off the gallant West Coast.

Come Sunday and South Melbourne closed the door on North Melbourne’s season with a hard fought but convincing win up in Steak & Kidney.  The Grand Old Flag Was A High Flying Flag as Jimmy’s Redlegs loosened the planks on the scaffold supporting the Essendon Caretaker Coach.  And to close off proceedings for Round XV, Les Misérables produced the Fred Hesse Annihilation Scoreboard with a little bit of help from The Sons of The West.

The word amongst the ticket sellers for the Coaches’ Carousel has it that Chokko won’t be the only incumbent coach to have his contract paid out early.  Our usually reliable informant expects the Williams family to be already talking with Brad Teal about accommodation options on Brad’s home patch.

The Troubled Port Power committee, prodded by some rambling remarks from their coach through the week, finally broke with him.  His farewell was one of the saddest things you’d ever want to witness, but not without a certain dignity.  Chokko had devoted his life to The Port Brand and given The Power a Flag in their first decade at the Elite Level.  The Williams name will live forever on the Honour Boards at Alberton.  Mark Williams – The Football World Salutes You.  A True Servant of The Game.

Speaking of servants, the signs that GAJ will be serving a new master next year are there for all to see .  Footballs Most Unstable Bottom Lip was in action again as his coach directed him to do the team thing rather than win the game – or at least more Brownlow votes – off his own boot last Saturday.  It’s been said before in this column, but we’ll say it again – the only side that can beat Geelong this season is Geelong.

Maggot Watch.  It was the usual unfathomable display again in Round XV and the question has to be asked – why isn’t La Geisha riding the Coaches’ Carousel?  Surely it’s time for a change at Maggot Central by now?  Richmond are on their 3rd coach since they unleashed The Giesch.  If nothing else demands a please explain from the invertebrates at Jellymont House, the painfully unmanly treatment handed out to the Other Riewoldt up in Brisbane should have.  One forearm to the St Kilda Skipper’s back happened off the ball and right in front of an adjudicating maggot.

What sort of game is so simple that an octopus can pick the winner?  As circus The World Cup was first class.  As a challenge of courage and skill under life & limb threatening pressure it fell a long way short of the benchmark established by Harrison & Wills in the colony of Victoria back in the middle of the 19th Century.

And how many felt the fireworks at Soccer Central were more impressive than the final itself?  The team at SBS talked up the match, and talked of ‘The Spanish Style’ and how everyone will have to work hard to catch up now the new criterion had been set.  The skill of the players is beyond question, it seems such a shame to see them wasted on such a mind-numbingly dull game.

But enough of my gabbin.  Let’s see who’s going to be making a pound in the 13th Round.

The Power From Port v The Carringbush Magpies.  The Tealers, stirred by their coach’s shabby treatment, and their part in triggering it, came out of the chute with eyes blazing and nostrils snorting.  Aided by a 2-3 goal wind blowing straight down the oval they had 5-3 on the board to Collingwood’s solitary behind by the 1st Change.  But as has been their want since their one Flag back in 2004, that was it.  The Victorian Maggies had levelled the scores by the Long Break and closed down the game to stay with The Power at the home turn.  From there on it was but a formality.  Coming home with the wind The Pies made it look a cakewalk, which we all know, it never is.  Davie Rodan chipped in with a couple of gems at the death to make sure Port raised the twin calicos in each quarter.  He’s back to his early season form after his mid-season injury and Richmond must be rueing the day they let him go, especially in light of the gap at the bottom of the packs left by Nathan Foley’s & Ben Cousins’ respective on-going health problems.  This is the last time interstate fans will see The Woodsmen in action as the have the remainder of their matches at THOF.  The first being against St Kilda at the traditional time.  The Power That Was has The Sons of The West up at Darwin on the Saturday night.

The Pivotonians v The Mayblooms.  These two never let you down, do they?  But just how good is this Sleepy Hollow Outfit?  The Hawks had their measure for most of the day and led at every change.  Out in the Leafy East they’ll be talking about what could have been if Buddy hadn’t Richoed one from 30m out on a slight angle.  But he wasn’t on his pat malone.  And sure, the maggoting was woeful, but the rough decisions were evenly spread.  It will be extra galling for The Mustard Pot Faithful that The Tiges went on to prop open the door to the Top Four.  But they’ll take more positives away from the match than negatives.  They would have to fall over to miss out on September Action from here and, with only Sydney to worry about, have every chance of securing a home final for the 1st Week in September.  They drag The Lions down to Lonny for some Unsociable Football next Saturday at the traditional time.  In full knowledge that GTWTCO, The Pivotonians await the arrival of The Mighty Adelaide Crows for the pipe opener at Kardinia Park.

The Weagles v The Chardonnays. With scores near enough to tied at the Citrus Huddle and the Home Crowd, all 26,976 of them, right behind them, destiny beckoned The Eagles.  Alas, they weren’t up to it.  The Crows lifted a notch and blew them away with a 7-3 Final Stanza.  The Victors have earned themselves a gig on the Friday Night stage down at The Cattery.  For The Weagles, it’s a Saturday night gig on the Shifting Sands of Ethelred Oval against The Bumbling Bombers.

The Bad News Bears v The Junction Oval Seagulls. You could be excused for thinking The Sainters had left their game plan on the team bus.  At the Long Break they trailed by 16 points and were playing some very ordinary Football.  Their tackling pressure finally broke Brisbane’s concentration and by the time The Lions resorted to a senseless and shabby display of physicality on the St Kilda Skipper the writing was on the wall.  Their season shot to ribbons, they’ll have a chance to flex their muscles again as guests of The Family Club down on the Apple Isle next Saturday.  The Seagulls have been invited to the Big Stage as the guests of The Carringbush Magpies in a Season Defining Match at the traditional time.

The Barry Crockers v Richmond. For the 2nd week in a row The Tigers had to did deep to produce a win.  For the 2nd week in a row they took on and beat a September Contender.  This time a Top Four Aspirant.  Each week The Tiger Cubs find someone to stand tall.  This round it was Daniel Connors.  Recently back in the Seniors after a club suspension, the youngster put in a 35 possession game – 21 of which came in the 2nd Half when the Tiges started putting their game together.  Some SOTG may be saying that Freo made some crucial errors.  Others may have noticed Sydney also made crucial, match-costing errors.  How much of this came from the pressure Richmond applied and how much had to do with the Football Gods is hard to say.  Under Coach Hardnose and his specialists they certainly won’t be getting ahead of themselves, but some of the younger Punt Road Faithful are taking it one week at a time – Glorious Ninth a distinct possibility.  Next weekend The Tiges host the NMFC on The Paddock That Grew.  The Anchormen slip back to Perth to prepare for The Rampaging Redlegs in the late one on the Sunday.

The Bloods v The Shinboners. Both OTR, this was a season defining match for these two teams.  It was a hard fought struggle, but once Kieran Jack cut down Boomer Harvey when the Roos’ Skipper was about to drive through a certain Captain’s Goal the wind left the Norsemen’s sails.  With their lowly percentage, The Kangaroos are as good as two games off the September Pace and have the Rampaging Richmond on The G at the traditional time next Sunday. The Lakers, with their Dual Brownlow Medallists ominously back in touch, trot along to the Boutique Facility at the end of Bourke Street for the early one on the same day.

Melbourne v Essendon. If the Essendon Caretaker Coach will be remembered for anything it will be for training his charges to stand and glare at the umpires taking their orange-aide at the centre circle during the final huddle.  Looking for all the world like a bunch of meerkats, they went on to win the final quarter handsomely, but not before putting in ¾ of Football that any self respecting meerkat would have been ashamed of.  The Dees on the other hand showed glimpses of the form that had the Football World abuzz earlier in the season.  As the rumblings along Puckle Street grow portentously louder, The Dons host the WCE on Saturday night.  The Demons visit Freo OTR to close off the round.

The Miseries v The Kennel Cough.  Showing every sign that they got the Stilnox mixed up with the NoDoze, Cartoon’s season has come and gone.  They showed all the commitment and desire of side used to tanking at this end of the season.  The Doggies showed plenty of run and it was their best display for some time.  Buoyed by Richmond’s opening of the door to the Top Four, they have The Dispirited Port up in Darwin on Saturday night.  The Miseries have The Swans on The Dumb for the early one on Sunday.

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. Great work, as always! Highly entertaining.

    Just thought I’d let you know the game between Geelong and Adelaide next week is actually at AAMI stadium. No night games are ever played at KP.

  2. John Mosig says:

    I thought that at the time Susie – from dawn till dark down at Kardinia Park. Can’t imagine what came over me.

    Thanks for the kind words BTW.

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