AFL Finals Week 1 – Richmond v Carlton: Who Gives a Toss

Ambivalent. That’s how I feel. Ambivalent. Like the bloke who is the best man at a lifelong friend’s wedding knowing that he had shagged the bride-to-be while on holiday in Bali three years ago. You know, he’s there but not proud of it. Ambivalent. That’s how I felt Sunday afternoon and that how I still feel. Sure, it was a good win over the Tigers and knowing that having the chance to do that came at the expense of Essendon should make it all the better. However, rather than elation, I’m as flat as a shit carter’s hat.

Ambivalent. Could it be a hangover from unquestionably the worse political campaign in history being led by two of the greatest political dolts to walk the planet? Was it the realisation that Warren Truss could one day be Prime Minister if Jug Ears gets knocked of his treadly? Three years of the Poodle, Pain and Cat’s Arse smirking across the benches. Fuck, it is just too awful much to contemplate.

Ambivalent. I should be booking my seat for the 2nd semi but I don’t give a toss about next Saturday. I loathe the Swans but I think I loathe Mick Malthouse above all things. For 60 minutes yesterday, Carlton played uninspired Malthouse football. For the following 60 minutes, Carlton played open, attacking football, that being get the ball to Judd and we will see how he goes. Turns out he went off like a frog in a sock and so did Carlton. What, did someone find Ratten’s old magnet board at half time? Same goes the week before. A stirring comeback on both occasions and great for the club, had we actually made the bloody finals on merit. But we didn’t and that is what this year should be judged on. Not a default final’s appearance thanks to the dribblers at Windgy Hill. Based on the actual results, Carlton finished ninth, the year has been wasted and Malthouse has failed.

Ambivalent. Watching Yarran and Garlett jogging of the spot for most of the game, when I should be seeing them rip and dash, is insipid. The Amigos may just not be up to the big stage or maybe they just do not have the confidence to play a brand of football that stifles creativity and results in the fear of a gobful of Malthouse bile after every quarter. A bit of both I think. Ambivalent.

Ambivalent. I should be excited by a list that has young blokes such as Casboult, Bell, and Menzel, However, I also see a list that has many duds and duds let you down when it matters. Ask the Tigers. I look into a coaching box and see not people that I would go to war with but officers wearing brown pants in case they shit themselves. I was waiting for Brad Green to run on the field after the final goal waving a pointed finger towards the MCC members. How could Brad Green inspire any person that has seen him play.

Ambivalent. A 12 goal to 3 goal second half with the Chosen One leading from the front, as only he can, was inspiring to all that watched. A dismal and flattering 6 goal to 10 goal first half with 7-8 players with fewer than 5 touches is a 60 point train load of whoop arse coming straight at you at the hands of Hawthorn. Guigan and Waite’s 4 goal hauls were great to see. Three fifty mete penalty in the second quarter resulting in Richmond goals was stupid and unwarranted. Robinson last quarter goal to put the Blues in front for the first time all day was a game breaker. The same bloke punching it through Richmond’s goal to gift them a freebie was the work of a, well a bloke like Robinson.

So Carton live to fight their extended season against team that has its’ own problems. Maybe if Malthouse misses the flight, they might be a chance. Maybe if second half Carlton turns up, the Blues could go one week further. I’ll be watching but will I be cheering? Most likely. Do I care if they get thumped? No, as ninth placed side don’t play in finals. They set small people on fire and harass the wheel chair bound. Ninth placed sides have nothing to play for and that is maybe why Carlton might win. But I don’t care. I just feel Ambivalent.

OUR Votes
Judd 3
Cotchin 2
Warnock 1

CARLTON 2.3 6.5 12.6 18.8 (116) RICHMOND 3.5 10.7 12.10 14.12 (96)

Goals: Carlton: J Waite 4 N Duigan 4 E Betts 3 J Garlett 2 M Robinson 2 C Judd H Scotland R Warnock. Richmond: A Edwards 2 I Maric 2 T Cotchin 2 T Vickery 2 B Ellis C Newman D Martin J Riewoldt R Petterd S Tuck.

BEST Carlton: Judd, Duigan, Gibbs, Waite, Betts, Robinson, Murphy, Bell. Richmond: Cotchin, Jackson, Deledio, Maric, Vlastuin, Houli

About Tony Robb

A life long Blues supporter of 49 years who has seen some light at the end of the tunnel that isn't Mick Malthouse driving a train.


  1. You seem to be feeling a lot of things TR. Pissed off. Angry. Regretful. Hateful. But I don’t reckon ‘ambivalent’ made the Top 100.
    You sound like a man that got a date with Elle MacPherson because she thinks you’re gay.

  2. Cheryl Critchley says

    Hi Tony,
    Great piece but very hard to read for a Richmond supporter after my team busted its gut all year to make the finals legitimately for the first time in 12 years. It just shows what a terrible year it has been for the AFL when you end up with a situation like this. No winners.

  3. What do you mean “no winners” Cheryl??? 16 teams are laughing like drains.

  4. Pete
    I am many things as you say. The more I think about, the more I think it’s Tony Abbott’s fault . To take from one of Australians great philosophical musical pieces from Bazza McKenzie ” If it was raining virgins, I’d be washed down the gutter with a poof”and bloody Abbott would let me marry one of them
    It has that feel about but last weekend’s other games on Saturday lifted the belief again

  5. Peter Fuller says

    I share your distress about the dire state of Australian politics; if you want to feel even worse take a dekko at some of the (likely) Senators from 1st July 2014 – and they have 6 years if there isn’t a DD!!
    However, we don’t have to be ambivalent; the Blues were the 8th best side in the compof those playing by the rules. There is also a precedent. Denmark won the European Nations’ Championship in 1992. They finished second in their group to Yugoslavia, and only qualified when that country was exluded because of international sanctions over the war (which ended with the break-up of the Yugoslav Federation). Denmark topped their group ahead of England and France, and beat the Netherlands and Germany to win the trophy.
    So, if the Blues go to Sydney and win, to Subiaco and overcome Freo, and then beat Hawthorn or Geelong (or Port Adelaide, ref. JTH) in the Grand Final, they will be legitimate Premiers (and then I woke up).

  6. Cheryl Critchley says

    I was going to steer clear of politics but the most frustrating part is that Kevin Rudd is even less likeable than Tony Abbott. His concession speech was one of the worst things I’ve seen for a long time – it was all about him and you’d think he’d just steered Melbourne to victory in the 2014 Grand Final. The AFL and politics are both in a perilous state and their credibility at the moment makes used car salesmen look good.

  7. Senator Brick with Eyes. The country is in good hands. Or pockets.

  8. Tony

    Reckon you’re too hard on your yourself mate. Your team Carlton rightfully came 8th. Essendon cheated and they distorted the ladder positions for 22 rounds. Can understand that that has taken away your enjoyment -as it has spolit the year for everyone – but try and rise above it, I say. After all, should Carlton fans fail to enjoy the inspiring performances over the last couple of games, you’ve let those Windy Hill scumbags ruin what should you’ve earnt (and shit, no one wants to see that.)

  9. Malcolm Ashwood says

    I agree with T Bone above and love Peter B Elle McPherson line . Essendon have correctly been booted out 4 cheating so Carlyon
    Deserve to be in also The AFL is a compromised Competion in the 1st Place with every 1 not Playing Each other Twice so why worry
    about been given the last Finals Spot Tony ?

  10. Andrew Starkie says

    Agreed, Tony. A horrible, horrible year for the AFL – inwhich their all their sins have retruned – has left me flat and barely interested.


    Find it very hard to believe that when Jeff kicked that goal in the last, any Blues fan could feel ambivalent.

Leave a Comment