AFL Round 17: There’s fight in the Tigers yet

By Josh Barnstable

I go about my usual Sunday ritual: waking up to the sound of my alarm at 9.55am, just enough time to go nab the papers, return to my room and watch AFL Game Day, followed by the Footy Show. After an hour of the Footy Show, I decide to help myself to some leftover pizza from the previous night. Then it’s back to my room where I listen to the pre-match antics of the Triple M commentary box. I also keep my ear out for the scores between Melbourne and Sydney. I boldly tipped Melbourne to defeat the Swans on a ground where the Swans would hold a slight advantage. By half-time of the match it seems over for the Dees. It won’t stop me from staying up late to watch the first quarter of the replay on Seven.

But back to the Bombers and the Tigers; Richmond run out looking a different side. For one, because Shane Tuck is not playing for the first time in ages, and two, the Tigers are wearing their clash strip, which I had my doubts about it but it looks OK. Ben Cousins and Trent Cotchin return to the team that drew with North Melbourne last week. Had they been playing last week, the Tigers would have been gunning for two in a row today. Nathan Brown also gets his chance to grab a position in the team and hopefully head into 2010 with a new contract. He just hasn’t been the same since Round 10, 2005 when he snapped his leg.

The first quarter begins and the Bombers have a goal on the board after just two kicks, with Scott Lucas kicking the first after a free kick to Paddy Ryder before the ball has been bounced. The Tigers reply through Jack Riewoldt and Jake King before Mark McVeigh snaps a goal to put Essendon back in front. A late goal to Mitch Morton sees the Tigers leading by 3 points, 3.2 to 2.5. Cousins has started in fine form, with 12 touches in the first quarter while Andrew Welsh has 8 for the Bombers.

The second quarter starts and Jason Winderlich gathers from a stoppage and snaps a goal to give the Bombers back the lead. The Tigers get on a roll, though, with Riewoldt snapping a goal, Matt White somehow kicking a goal from 45m out that barely bounces through, Brown crumbing a pack in the goalsquare, Riewoldt getting on the end of a Richard Tambling run-and-kick which was very reminiscent of Phil Manassa and finally Brett Deledio kicking a big goal from 55m out. The Tigers lead by 29 points, not quite the 42 points they led by this time last week but still commanding. The Bombers claw back, though, with late goals to Ryder and Adam McPhee that sees the margin at half-time cut to 16 points, 5.6 to 8.4. Cousins is up to 19 possessions while Brent Prismall and Jobe Watson are on 15 disposals.

I take time out at half-time to make myself a quick Milo and return to the telly. The third quarter begins and the Bombers continue their momentum, with early goals to Ricky Dyson and Lucas cutting the margin to 3 points. Daniel Jackson replies for the Tigers with a running goal out of the centre before Andrew Lovett kicks two in a row to give Essendon a one-point lead. Kyle Reimers then goals, giving the Bombers a 6-point break. The Tigers reply with goals through Riewoldt twice and Jayden Post kicks the first goal of his AFL career; about time, it seemed he was there abouts in each game. The Tigers would have been feeling nervous though, as go into three quarter time with a 12 point lead, 12.9 to 10.9.

The final quarter begins and Riewoldt kicks his sixth goal to snuff out any Essendon revival in my opinion, especially when Post kicks his second. The Tigers lead by 23 points. Ryder kicks his second goal. Worry Richmond fans? No, Morton steadies the ship for the second time in two weeks with a goal, taking the margin out to 22 points. Courtenay Dempsey kicks a goal on the run, followed by a Brent Stanton goal after some clever work by Winderlich. The margin is 8 points.

Worry Richmond fans? YES!

The final minutes are frantic. Reimers takes a courageous mark and kicks a goal to cut the margin to 5 points. I feel bad for all the Richmond supporters who are above 80 years of age, and the Essendon supporters in that bracket as well. With the ball driving long inside the Essendon 50, they need a mark. Matthew Lloyd is off with a heel complaint and gone are the days of a Lucas screamer, if the days were ever present. They need Winderlich to take a specky, Davey to crumb a pack, Reimers to do the unthinkable. They need Jay Neagle in the side. The Tigers have Jarrod Silvester, Will Thursfield, Luke McGuane and Adam Pattison to take the mark and save the Tigers from defeat. Then a little player jumps out and marks. It’s Shane “Tich” Edwards. Of all the players to take a game-saving mark in defence, it’s little Tich. He clears the ball, the siren sounds, the Tigers win by 5 points, 15.11 (101) to 14.12 (96).

Rivalry Round has been a big hit this year, and today’s result certainly didn’t disappoint. I knew I should have picked Richmond today. I bloody knew it!

As I write the final details on my notepad, my kitten bounds into the room and jumps on my bed. She twirls around me, being Mrs. Nice Kitty so can get a pat. As I continue writing, she is distracted by my pen. She takes one swipe at it, connecting with my hand. Blood falls on the page. There’s fight in the old tiger yet, or in this case the young kitty.

Essendon 2.5—5.6—10.9—14.12.96
Richmond 3.2—8.4—12.9—15.11.101


Essendon-Ryder 2, Lucas 2, Lovett 2, Reimers 2, Stanton, Dempsey, Winderlich, McPhee, McVeigh, Dyson

Richmond-Riewoldt 6, Morton 2, Post 2, Jackson, White, Brown, King, Deledio


Essendon-Welsh, Ryder, Lovett, Prismall, Fletcher

Richmond-Riewoldt, Cotchin, Cousins, Nahas, Post, Deledio


47,412 at the MCG


3: Jack Riewoldt (R)
2: Trent Cotchin (R)
1: Andrew Welsh (E)


  1. Steve Healy says

    Josh, what is this notepad that you have? Do you write results of games in it?

    Sounds like it was a good game. I have only seen highlights. Richmond have been in two Sunday afternoon thrillers in a row.

    I have a similiar Sunday ritual-although Melbourne usually play on Sunday so I’m usually at the footy. And sometimes when I have to go to church I run home for the start of AFL game day.

    I’m also a Triple M listener- I usually listen to Friday night and Saturday afternoon games.

    I love the Sunday night replays on 7. Although there’s only a few a year it’s still good to watch or record coverage of games for people like me who don’t have Foxtel.

  2. Damian Watson says

    Great Writing Josh,
    Did you see Campell Brown horse racing call on Game Day? He isn’t too bad.
    I agree with your perception of Nathan Brown, I remember his brilliant form in 2005 prior to his injury, especially the match where he single-handedly won the game for the Tigers against Collingwood kicking 5 in the final term.
    I think One HD also provides replays of AFL games during the week and they are useful if you have missed a match on the weekend.

  3. Steve Healy says

    I love One HD. I’m always looking through the TV guide to see when the replays are on.
    Unfortunately, I think Geelong V Hawthorn was on late last night and St.Kilda V Bulldogs is on late tonight. I just watched a replay of One week at a time because I didn’t watch it last night.

    I remember Brown breaking his leg against the Demons. Matthew Whelan’s tackle was great though.

  4. Danielle says

    Nice job, annoying how one little scratch can give so much blood!
    what colour is your kitty??


  5. Josh Barnstable says

    Steve: My notepad is what i write in so i can refer to it later when i’m writing a report on the game i’m watching. Usually, i break the page down into quarters, and for each quarter i write who kicks each goal and how it was kicked, whether it was from a mark on the lead or a snap from the boundary line. I also write down certain things like an injury to a player, a report by an umpire and just things that happened earlier in the day so i can put in my report.

    Damian: Yeah i saw Campbell Brown. I’m not really into Horse Racing so i didn’t really know if he did well or not but if he was calling a piece of footy action i’m sure he would have excelled as well. Commentary is something i want to do when i’m older so i look to the footy players who can also call a match as someone to look up to.

    Danielle: My kitty is orange. Haha

  6. Danielle says

    aww how cute!!
    in that case you should name it ‘Lingy!!
    Cos of Cameron LING!!

  7. Josh Barnstable says

    Haha i’ve been calling it ranga and all these red-head jokes but Mum doesn’t like it. We ended up calling it Knackers. And don’t ask why we called a girl kitty Knackers! Long story lol

  8. Danielle says

    Knackers??? lol
    if i had a girl kitty i would call her ‘Muddles’i have no idea why..but its a cute name!

  9. Josh Barnstable says

    I was gonna call it “Flitter” but Mum said no to that for some reason.

  10. Danielle says

    Flitter!! omg no wonder she said NO
    thats so wierd… lmaooo
    its sounds like FILTER!!

  11. Josh Barnstable says

    Well i heard people talking about that Twitter website on TV and i mixed the word around and Flitter sounds like a girly name…I think??

  12. Danielle says

    haha maybe if you had called her ‘Flutter’
    like a butterfly!!
    ps. i hate writing up timelines for History homework!

  13. Josh Barnstable says

    Hmm maybe that would have worked.

    Haha really? In my history writing timelines was so easy! Especially when all the dates and stuff are right in front of you in a text book! I found them quite fun to make :)

  14. Danielle says

    fun..isnt the word to use..
    this text book is thick and you have to read everything to make sure its relevant and make sure you dont miss any important dates!!
    im learning about the Vietnam war..its not as interesting as the Nazi stuff.

  15. Josh Barnstable says

    Ohh when I was doing history it was about the First Fleet and all that stuff. I found it quite interesting and got an A! Yipee! Oh and by the way, thanks for stealing Nathan Buckley away from North Melbourne. I really didn’t want him as coach, way too inexperenced.

  16. Danielle says

    …..well EXCUSE ME
    first off..I didnt steal anyone.
    Second you can have him..I WANT TO TAKE OVER AT COLLINGWOOD or Toovey will reach 200 games!!!

  17. Josh Barnstable says

    Haha. Well if you do succeed in taking over the Lexus Centre, get rid of Anthony Rocca!

  18. Danielle says

    NO WAY Rocca is PERFECT as my own personal bodygaurd!! along with Nathan as my umbrella boy, to hold my umbrella for me when it rains!! ive got it all set out. :)

  19. Steve Healy says

    Rocca should stay at Collingwood.

    He is one of the best players to watch in the comp, because you never know what you will get from him. It could be a goaless two possession game or a 7-goal game including a few bombs from 60+ metres out.

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