View From Shepparton: Good on you, Gazza, and thank goodness Judd fell short

Well Gazza got up and good on him. I recently became aware that some commentators have criticised him for standing clear of the play to receive easy handballs or kicks but I must say that this has never been obvious to me. I would just go to a game to see him play. The other thing is that he plays the game in a really fair manner. I have never been aware of any on-field petulance or dirty play from him. I think that he is an absolute credit to his club and through his club the game.

Unlike Chris Judd. My better half reckoned that the Brownlow would have lost all credibility with her had he been the winner. Given that the count is conducted on the Monday before the grand final I think that suspensions  incurred in all matches before that last game should make those players ineligible and in the unfortunate event that the winner was suspended as a result of a report incurred in the grand final the medal should be taken from that player and awarded to the runner-up.

The next point I want to make is the black and white way that commentators dismiss teams who have been finals losers. Collingwood have now been said to be useless four weeks out yet until a couple of weeks ago they were favourites because at that time their form was outstanding. Now suddenly they have no rucks and their forward set-up was hopeless. Key players were said not to be up to finals pressure. Now while I will admit that a 73 point hiding is scarcely a great platform from which to launch a rebuttal, the fact is that they did come back from the dead against Adelaide, a team which was in red hot form.

The Bulldogs apparently need a key forward but surely Big Bad isn’t the answer. Had they kicked straight in the last quarter everyone would be now saying that the Saints relied too much on an injured Riewoldt and that key players like Milne and Schneider weren’t up to finals footy and that some decent small players were needed at the club. We will probably hear all of this and more after next Saturday. I am not aware of the current critique of Brisbane but even I would have to admit that they need more players to kick goals. Adelaide is perennially seen to have players that are getting too old.

Back to the games. St Kilda were very lucky to get out of that one. I reckon that Riewoldt’s last goal was a bit of a fluke, the ball fell his way after an attempted pack mark and there was no Bulldog defender between him and the goal. I also thought that the free against Lake was pretty soft. The Saints did get up, though, and in most people’s view that was fair enough given that they were the minor premiers.

Geelong have come back with a vengeance and the way the match turned out made me wish even more that it had been the Crows playing against them. One will never know of course but I reckon that Adelaide would have really pushed them. Collingwood were pretty hopeless after half-time, it has to be admitted. I really think that they need a new coach, because surely for some players it would be more of the same old same old given Mick’s extended tenure. Look at how Sydney picked up after Paul Roos took over.

I have come out of the major round as possibly the worst tipster. With more than my heart than my mind I thought that both Geelong and St Kilda had run out of puff and thus that neither would make the final. As it is now, a combination of St Kilda’s great defence and Geelong’s grand final kicking yips could make it a great close game but I think Geelong by 45.

In a tough call I will be supporting St Kilda because they have been the best side all year and they now deserve another premiership.

About Peter Schumacher

Wannabe footy commentator and writer, used to be a wannabe footballer

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