The Wrap: Finals — Week 1

THE WRAP

Where Life Imitates Sport

What a round it’s been in Footy Eddie.  The Mighty Adelaide Crows provided the Fred Hesse Annihilation Scoreboard for the 2nd consecutive week as Coach Knighter’s Brave Mosquito Bombers learn that you can only fly so far on empty.   The Cats & Dogs fight out an inconclusive battle at THOF with The Cats taking the bacon this time.  From up under the palm trees Coach Ratts promised more Viagra at Optus Oval in 2010 as The Whole Football World witnessed the embarrassing premature ejaculation of the CFC from 2009.  There was nothing inconclusive about Sunday’s 1966 GF Rematch.  The Sinners throttled the life out of Carringbush’s Title Tilt.

The League Captains Against Violence got some exposure over the weekend.  It was warming to see Matty Lloyd’s face amongst them.  However, it must highlight the dangers of pre-recorded societal targeted advertisements of this nature in a fluid situation.

Still out at Whingy Hill, traditionalists, heartened by the selection of a six game rookie in place of the 201 cm Bellchambers, were seen toasting Marshmallows beneath a tied down windsock and chanting Bring in The Mighty Quinn!!!  In true reverence to the Four Flag Mentor of bygone days, the Selectors decided to forfeit the rucks and outrun the opposition.  It worked a treat.  In fact it worked exactly as any Student of The Game would have expected it work.  Mickey Quinn played his part to a tee.  He shanked one from dead in front and his fumbled receive in the goal mouth will go down in the annals.  The Sheed is dead!  Long live The Sheed!

And there’s a rumour going around, unsubstantiated and vehemently denied of course, that the Essendon Playing Group showed more fight off the field than on it.  But then, you look sideways in the City of Churches and you’re a troublemaker.

The real violent happened up at The Gabbattoir.  And it may deliver another windfall to The Bagmen.  One of the favourites for this years’ Fairest & Best was captured by the Channel Rove cameras at, to be kind, not his professional best.  The Juddanaught appears to be indulging in a bit of eye gouging on Brisbane’s Michael Rischitelli.  The Carlton Captain was quick to say he was just looking for a pressure point on Rischitelli’s temple.  Pressure point?  What sort of game are they playing around there at Visy Park?  If the head is sacrosanct, what price sight?  Ten weeks seems fair.  It comes under the Four C rule – it was calculated, callous, cowardly – did we forget to mention Judd was standing over Rischitelli at the time the alleged event took place – and he plays for Carlton.  We feel sure that had he played for Essendon, the Whingy Hill legal team of Downright Lie & Procrastinate would have told him to say nothing.  As it is, the lame excuse would suggest a certain amount of intent.  The Football World awaits the review of the incident by the invertebrates around at the Star Chamber.

But enough of my gabbin’. Let’s see who’s left of the September Contenders.

ADELAIDE        4.3    12.4    18.9    26.10    (166)
ESSENDON        3.3      5.7      8.8    10.10      (70)
The Pride of South Australia v The Mosquito Bombers.  Mrs Wrap was asked half way through the Championship Quarter whether Essendon could come back from here to night.  Without looking up from her knitting she replied that it wouldn’t matter if they missed the redeye.  There’d be another plane in the morning.  And that about sums up The Bombers trip to Crow Park.  Mark McVeigh and Andrew Welsh tried to get a discussion group together on the merits of early Etruscan poets and their influence on later Roman literature, but too many Adelaide players turned up and the group discussion had to be abandoned.  The Gliders hardly got off the ground before they were shot down.  It was no indictment of The Dons.  They were simply outgunned.  And outgunned in a manner that will send a shiver through the collective spine of the remaining five Premiership Aspirants.  Remember when you’d be out on the ground making tracks in the dew, waiting for your U17 opposition to come out of the shed.  Opposition from Dandenong, Frankston or Xavier.  Half of them would be shaving and most had tattoos.  (Surely not tatts at Xavier Wrap – Ed)  Well that was Adelaide on Friday night.  By the end of the night they had totally monstered Essendon.  And what about that forward line?  Big bodies and strong hands.  And can they move?  Purists have been salivating about the Collingwood St Kilda GF Replay with a repeat of the result.  It may yet be a GF Replay – Adelaide v St Kilda.  And judging from what we all saw on Friday night, the result could be repeated.

GEELONG        6.5    7.5    13.9    14.12    (96)
BULLDOGS        2.1    4.3    8.4    12.10    (82)
Geelong v The Western Bulldogs.  The Sleepy Hollow Millionaires won this one with two quarters of football.  The Sons of The West, that is their want, missed the chance for a week off with some errant kicking when they had the momentum.   The match opened at a furious pace and it was The Moggies who showed the greater desire.  They swarmed all over The Scrays in the Opening Stanza and, when The Doggies midfielders finally found the handle on the pigskin, The Pivotonian’s defence, led by an earlier Full Back of The Century, denied the Bulldog forwards any breathing space.  There’s been some support through the mail this week for a shorter season and the seesawing nature of this match may have something to do with Football fatigue.  The Cats looked unstoppable in two quarters kicking 6-5 & 6-4.  Then they scrambled 1-0 & 1-3 in the other two.  That The Dogs weren’t able to penetrate the Geelong Defence may say as much about the Scraggers’ lack of dominant forwards (Something they could well get a lesson in next week – Ed) or the strength of The Handbaggers’ backline is open to debate.  The results are on the board.  The talk around the fruit stalls & live seafood outlets of Little Saigon and the smart cafés of Sedon will be heavy with what if’s, but the truth is they didn’t nail the opportunities they had in a frantic 10 minutes in the Final Stanza so they host The Brisbane Lions next weekend.  The Cats will sit on the mat, purring.  The battle weary Stevie J and Max Rorke get an extra week’s recuperation and the XXII from Saturday alternate between the massage tables t Skilled Stadium and the icy waters of Eastern Beach.  Bomber knows he might just have got out of jail on Saturday, and he’s hinted that they’ll be doing things a bit differently in preparation for a tilt at this year’s’ Flag.  He said that after The Hawks caught them on the hop last year if our memory serves us well.  He now realises Port Adelaides only come along once in a lifetime.

THE MAROONS        4.4    8.7    10.10    16.15    (111)
THE BLUES            5.4    8.8    14.10    14.14    (104)
The Brisbane Lions v The Royal Parade Silvertails.  Here was one for purists.  After witnessing the slog out at The G between two 21st Century sides, this one felt like a return to the 60s & 70’s when they used to Kick it long to Royce at Punt Road and full forwards regularly bagged a ton.  There was no Ted Hopkins, but the 30 point margin was the biggest reversal in a final since that fateful LSIS so many years ago.  The Miseries really seemed to have the game sewn up after a brilliant Championship Quarter and the flags along La Via Lygon would have been on the halyard ready to run them up to the masthead.  But the excitement proved too much for them and now the Blues Brothers will be careful to bring their lunch to work and eat in their offices for a week or so.  Their coach has said they’ll do better next year with the return of Waite & Jamison.  But 2010 is another season.  So they pack the Old Dark Navy Blue Jumpers away for the Long Dark Summer along Royal Parade and wait for Christmas to come.  Maybe that’s what the graffiti on the red brick walls of Princes Park meant all along?  Glorious Leader was amongst the 32,702 throng at The Gabbattoir.  And with a Test between The Boks & The Wallabys being played just down the road at Lang Park it was a bit of a coup for OGG.  To see the son of a Queensland sharefarmer jumping up and down in his Roy Boy Colours would have given the spin doctors writing his autobiography a pix or two, and the film version some humanising footage.  All round, the win was good for Football and for rookie coach Boss Voss.  He has maintained The Bad News Bears’ unbeaten finals’ record at The Gabba and gets his Young List a trip to Melbourne for a taste of Finals’ Fever.

St Kilda v Collingwood.  For those who were worried that The Feeling Faints had reverted to The Culture Club once the Sun had slipped south of the Vernal Equinox rest easy.  The Linton Street Misers were back to their mingy worst on Sunday.  A boa constrictor couldn’t have done a better job on a warthog.  They crushed the life out of Collingwood and went on to kick a enough goals to win comfortably.  And wasn’t St Riewoldt supreme?  Talk about leading from the front.  The performance of The Saints’ Skipper highlighted The Woodsmen’s main weakness: the absence of key forwards.  Anthony Rocca’s return to the senior XXII grossed five touches and two goals – minus the 100m penalty & goal he gave away.  To be honest, the penalty was just a bit of argy bargy with an old adversary, the Ionic Zac Dawson, but you don’t mess with Maggot of the Year Aspirant Ray Chamberlain.  The player Big Anthony replaced in the goal square had an equally forgettable day.  Jack Anthony had three touches and brought up the twin calicos on only the one occasion.  Their CHF Cloke took 13 marks for his 0-2-1.  The Saint Kilda CHF took 13 marks and kicked 5-1-3.  The first three goals of which turned the match around.  But the Magpie forwards weren’t alone.  Presti had three touches for his three turnovers and Harry O’Bree had 12 touches for eight turnovers in a nightmarish 72% game time.  That the margin was so small would be a worry for Coach Lyon.  But it’s Mickey The Maltster who has the real worries.  With a match next Saturday against a team that has kicked 52 majors over it’s last two outings, his tattered defence and ineffectual attack would have him contemplating life after football.  A goal converted from an errant kick along the boundary line and one against Didak for a throw summed up Carringbush’s year.  All year they’ve relied on the all too slick camouflaged handball and the white line magic of a few.  That two youngsters dropped from Collingwood’s late season winning combination – Brad Dick & Cameron Wood – starred in the Magpie Magoos would have to be an embarrassment to whoever decided to drop them for the journeyman Leigh Brown and the over-the-hill Rocca.  It will be interesting to see how they react at the selection table on Thursday night.  A Straight Set Exit awaits them unless the Overlander from Adelaide overshoots the Spencer Street Station and lands in the Yarra.  The Saints looked mean and will retreat to the Moorabbin Bunker of Strike Force St Kilda to ready themselves for either Brisbane or Footscray.

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.

Leave a Comment

*