AFL Round 10: Cats just too good

By Rod Oaten

Geelong 20.14 (134) d Essendon 11.4 (70)

I had my misgivings about this match, first of

all it’s at Docklands, I can’t recall what they call it these days and

frankly don’t care either . This Docklands “Fish Bowl” is a crap ground

as far as I’m concerned. Let’s face it there are plenty of footy

grounds that are good to watch our great game, and this is not one of

them. The first would have to be the Essendon ground, standing in

front of the Dick Reynolds Stand against the fence was fantastic

especially after a win, the Port Melbourne Oval was full of atmosphere,

especially the day Coburg got up to win by less than a goal and Phil

Cleary blew kisses to the Borough supporters. The Woodfull-Miller oval

at Melbourne High School, The Melbourne University Ground , the Lorne

football oval and all the other old VFL and VFA grounds were good to

watch our game and the” G” is great every time.

The Partner was coming with me, she is a born again

Geelong fan, actually she has always supported them but after 30+ years

of disappointment she has kept it pretty quiet. Her brother is a

different kettle of fish altogether, for all the years I have known

him he has tried to convince me that each particular year was going

to be Geelong‘s year. It was hard not to be slightly emotional for him

after the 2007 Grand Final. But back to The Partner, the last few

times we have been to an Essendon v Geelong game, the results have been

disastrous for the Dons which is a bit disconcerting , but you

banish these feelings and reckon there is new hope this year

It’s a bit misty as we jump on the tram, and

down to the ground behind Spencer Street. We get there early because

you regularly hear horror stories of thousands of people trying to get

through one entrance, because of cost cutting, and missing most of the

first half. The mist is clearing , the sun is out and watching the Dons

warm up, things look pretty good. But Geelong look good too and the

Partner looks confident.

The game starts and the Dons move the ball forward

and Jay Neagle kicks a good opening goal. We have hit the front, but

before I have a chance to get carried away the Geelong Machine gets

moving with the skill and pressure and not only match the early goal

by Essendon but kick plenty of there own. Luckily their accuracy

wasn’t the best , which sort of made us look a bit better than we

really were. The Dons are tackling and chasing all to no avail , second

to the ball, playing from behind and misdirecting hand balls and kicks,

this is a replay of Round 2, 2008!

The carnage continues, so by half time the only

interesting thing happening were the comments of a Geelong fan behind

us who added some well needed humour. The Partner had a contented smile

on her face, but said she would be happier if Geelong were further in

front! Further in front , at this stage they are about 8 goals up and

and it looks like they are having a training run. The Dons have a total

of three majors and as they move off the ground , Geelong have 12 and a

heap of points. I’m at a loss as to what the Essendon Brains Trust can


If I thought it couldn’t get worse, I will have

to think again, the Dons to their credit keep trying , but Geelong are

just playing at another level, far too good at everything. We managed

to get a goal or two but at three-quarter time, its Essendon5 goals 3

to Geelong 17.13. I have real fears that it will be another thrashing

like last year, and I thought that the Dons had improved! Can I stand

to sit through another 30+ minutes, of course I can, but I reckon lots

of the Essendon fans have called it quits. Anyway , The Partner, for

some unknown reason is enjoying it, although always fearing the worst

being a Geelong supporter, says that she would still be happier to have

a few more goals on the board .

The sun has moved behind the roof so that made

watching the game a little easier, and The Dons have got a bit of

direction in their game. Their efforts are putting a few goals on the

board, making our score vaguely respectable, but it’s still no

contest. What I was enjoying , in this back to reality game for The

Dons, was watching Steve Johnson play his own little game with the

Essendon defenders. With his knock kneed legs barely moving faster than

a slow shuffle and his lay back attitude he seemed to be having great

fun just muckin’ around the forward line for Geelong, kicking goals

from impossible angles. What a talent he is. Essendon get a couple of

late goals and the siren at last puts me out of my agony.

Final scores are Essendon 11.4 to Geelong 20.14 .

I suspect the cats eased off in the last quarter. The Dons didn’t stop

trying all day, and I was really cheesed off when some of the Essendon

barrackers gave some of the players the Bronx cheer. They tried the”

Bums Off”, they were just outclassed.

Comparing todays game to last year, Geelong far

far too good again and Essendon about a 10% improvement, But hope

springs eternal and next week against Adelaide we will bounce back.


  1. Pamela Sherpa says

    Rod, for the Bombers the one good things is ‘Thank heavens it wasn’t a final!’ I thought our youngsters looked a bit overawed- need to toughen up a lot, but at least can see what is required to become premiereship material. I love Jay Neagle as I loved hid dad ‘Swervin.’ Bit of strength and fire in the belly. Crunch game against the Crows, Here’s hoping we bounce back.

  2. Richard E. Jones says

    FOLKS, we let them kick too big a score.
    The Gliders’ three first half goals was quite sufficient.
    Inevitably, I suppose, with Tommy Harley off and Taylor playing injured, they were going to get a few more goals.
    But wasn’t it delightful Scarlo buzzing in Lloyd’s ear the whole day and allowing him just one, measly major. Always terrific to see the AFL’s most consistent supplicant to the umpires have such a miserable day.
    You can’t get a better Sunday than that — belting the Gliders by close to 11 goals and Lloyd being soundly whipped !

  3. I was thinking about that first goal of Neagle’s. It was as if there was a swarm of bees all buzzing contentedly, up close and personal with each other, and then the Bombers gave the swarm an almighty whack with that first goal and got it angry! It was ninety minutes before the swarm calmed down again!!! An awesome football team.

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