AFL Round 18: St. Kilda v Fremantle – A Miracle at the Dome

miracle at dome

Shoshana is visiting from San Francisco, and in 2010, when visiting her, I wrote my first Almanac article. One hundred and twenty four articles later, it felt only fitting that I take her and her brother Zamir, to the footy and write about it. You can’t visit Melbourne in winter and not see a game live. She kept telling me she is a lucky charm. When she goes places, good things happen. So it seems.

We came with no expectations of success, though Zamir joked that we could win. It was also Uncle Bob’s last game for the season, he’s heading off to Europe before the next home game, a rare thing for him, a trip interrupting his footy season. But we had no expectations. Our magnificent man and leader Lenny Hayes had announced his retirement at the end of the year, and we have six weeks to celebrate our Love of Lenny.

We had no expectations when Dempster was concussed and motored off the ground on a stretcher, happily OK soon after. Shenton our sub, was on within moments of the start. So we had no expectations when Reiwoldt kicked the first and Murdoch the second. We were waiting for Freo to switch on. A slow start perhaps. I turned to Bob and said, we’ll take this, fully expecting the anchor to drop and shut us down. No anchor in sight, as Dunstan slotted a beauty and Stanley came of age with the fourth for the quarter. Mayne stole one back for the Dockers and we went into quarter time expecting the Dockers to get a fry from Ross Lyon and for the re-establishment of the true world order.

Stanley put his fingerprints on our new universe, slotting his second and Morabito got his first goal after years of injury. Riewoldt slotted the next two. The stadium of Saints had gone wild. We were witnessing a rebirth, a team of old and young showing us something wonderful. There were no quiet Sainters tonight, on or off the field of dreams. Sixteen thousand supporters witnessed something special. Curren joined the party followed by a Schneider from old, goal. In this unlikely goal fest, an anomaly in a Freo game, Barlow got another before Stanley stamped “future champion” on his forehead. St.Kilda went into half time 6 goals, 4 points up. Unheard of. Shock. Awe. Saintly expectation of a Docker shut down and come back. Were we really pantsing the 2nd on the ladder?

We refuelled with dinner and prepared with no great expectations of this dream continuing. We are Saints supporters. I would expect nothing less.

But the miracle continued. It was a 6-2 goal third quarter, with a strong, determined Armitage goaling the next, Pavlich followed trying to pull his team out of their shock, before Riewoldt again smashed another one, followed by Montagna and two within a minute from Ray. The scenes of happy players bathed our hearts in happiness. The purple haze had disappeared. There was no purple anywhere, not even on their jumpers. Dunstan kicked our last for the quarter before Pavlich goaled again. Third quarter found us 10 goals ahead.

Each time the Saints goaled, I got a soft elbow in the ribs and Shoshana reminding me she was lucky. NOW I believed her. Zamir and I made a plot to burn her passport and keep her here for ever. All around us, the cranky Saints of past became the happy Saints, the hopeful Saints, the future witnessing Saints. St.Kilda had won three quarters of football. Un-bloody-believable.

Freo finally came out fighting in the last, with Fyfe slotting the first before Shenton told them “no-way”. Pearce goaled and Riewoldt answered. Take that Freo. No coming back thanks. Fyfe rallied for another and Taberner finished off the night, and it was a scrappy til the last. The song was sung with gusto.

In the three months since we last won a game, I have talked of parts of games, then reduced to positive good moments of a game. Today, I saw moments of poor play in the third quarter when we made the rookie mistakes that our team had made their own this season. There were only moments, perhaps 10 minutes in the whole game, that the Saints lost focus and skill. We kicked accurately, man to man, no bombing, we kicked straight and we tackled like there was no tomorrow. Thankfully, there is a bye and the boys will recover and no one will treat us like the easy beats again this season.

Currently, Shoshana and Uncle Bob are chained to a goal post, still singing, and will not be released until our next Premiership.

St.Kilda 4.3 9.6 15.14 17.16 (118)

Fremantle 1.1 3.2 5.6 9.6 (60)


St.Kilda: Riewoldt 4, Stanley 3, Ray 2, Dunstan 2, Murdoch, Curren, Schneider, Montagna, Armitage, Shenton.

Fremantle: Pavlich 2, Fyfe 2, Mayne, Morabito, Barlow,Pearche, Taberner.


St.Kilda Riewoldt, Stanley, Hayes, Savage, Dunstan, Ray

Fremantle: Barlow, Crowley, Duffield

Umpires: Fisher, Rosebury, McIerney

Official Crowd 16, 594

Our Votes: Riewoldt, Stanley, Hayes with special mention of Savage and Shoshana.


About Yvette Wroby

Yvette Wroby writes, cartoons, paints through life and gets most pleasure when it's about football, and more specifically the Saints. Believes in following dreams and having a go.


  1. tony robb says

    Well played Yvette
    I think we might name round 18 the Restoration of Pride round

  2. Neil Anderson says

    One for a true-believer Yvette. Still coming down from the Bulldog’s narrow defeat, hoping we could have both celebrated together. Any chance of borrowing Shashana for the last few Bulldog matches…except for the one against the Saints of course?

  3. Matt Zurbo says

    Top stuff, Yvette!!

  4. This is the one game that has had me rethink the ban on foxtel.

    Living it through newspaper reports is one thing, but reading your report is so much better Yvette. Is there a keep Shoshana and Uncle Bob fund available for crowd sourcing?

  5. Yvette Wroby says

    Hi guys still flying hi and Gus we watched the replay that night. Am keeping it so heads up if u want to watch it. Bad luck re doggies Neil I was hoping for matching bookends. It’s great to have such a positive buzz about the saints. Yvette

  6. I would say you have risen from the dead. But its the wrong faith.
    My Carlton barracking neighbour and I were doing some joint gardening on Sunday. We both said that this was the most enjoyable game we had watched all season – even better than our own team wins (not much competition there).
    The Saints tactic of kick to the top of the 50 arc, and never bomb long, is very effective against the Ross Wall. You just have to be able to convert from distance, which the Saints did admirably in the first half.

  7. Patrick O'Brien says

    The Shashana Round.

  8. Malcolm Ashwood says

    At the Ad Uni FC Greys combined lunch with the Knackery yesterday the assembled were genuinely excited for you Yvette well played !

  9. I was happy to give up one point in my footy tips for Lenny.

    Can’t say the same for Mick tho.

  10. Don Meadows says

    Truly memorable Yvette.
    And mazel tov Shoshana, Uncle Bob and your good self!

  11. Hi Yvette,

    Nearly four months after the match, I still remember how big the win was. It was the massive win for mighty Saints. I watched the match at the Australian pub and replay with the DVDs my friend gave me twice. Your match report topped up excitement I had gained.

    It’s a great article and I would like to thank Shoshana to attend the game.

    As always, I hope we can watch St Kilda games at Etihad Stadium and MCG soon.

    All the best,


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