AFL Round 2 – Brisbane v Adelaide: The ambivalent Croweater

I always have a sense of ambivalence about South Australian Football although I am a born and bred Croweater.

On the one hand I have great memories of going to the very occasional match with Dad in the fifties, he was a Norwood man through and through and thus of course I was. Some players that stand out in my memories as fantastic were Peter Vivian, Peter Aish (how that name lives on in South Australian footy) Graham Skinner, Norm Walker and the  great Lindsay Head from West Torrens and later on of course the incomparable Barrie Robran from North Adelaide.

I vaguely remember going to my first match, Tailem Bend v the Murray Bridge Ramblers  at “Tailem” on the River Murray, and then many matches at Birdwood, a small town in the Adelaide Hills.  At both venues appreciative patrons would drive to the ground with vehicles then parked around the boundary facing the play. Each home team goal was greeted with appreciative blasts of the horn. This was real home town footy but I did not appreciate this at the time but merely thought that it was the way things were, just great.

The overall towering default position behind all of this was that we and those all around us hated Victorians with a passion because not only did they did not know about us, but they were so disdainful of South Australian Football that they did not care. South Australians forgot that they had a similar  view of footy played in Tasmania. Anyway Dad and I went to a few interstate games, the first way back in the dark ages, cannot remember when, we won by about nine goals but on the other hand even we had appreciate Hudson, Jezza in their pomp.

So why all this preamble about Adelaide when I am a Brisbane supporter. Don’t the Lions have a history? Of course, the struggles to have any relevance at all as the Bears and the first signs of stirring when the nearly beat Carlton, I think in 1999, from over ten goals  behind and of course the great teams of 2001-2003. And that’s the thing, there was not much Aussie Rules culture in Queensland that I was aware of having lived there in 1969, and 1977- 1980 bit it was starting to pick up a bit when I next moved back up there in 1987 and stayed until the end of 2000. Rugby League which I am the first to concede is a great game absolutely ruled the roost and I would suggest still does. That’s the culture up there particularly up the coast and in the big regional towns of Toowoomba and Townsville. So it used to really irritate me when Malt Mickhouse and others would whinge and moan about the supposed breaks that Lions were getting. Brisbane weren’t in a Melbourne Aussie Rules footy nirvana, or for that matter the  Adelaide equivalent, they were battling for survival in a largely alien environment. And that’s my point. South Australia should have been able, should be able to field teams which are top four finishers  every year given the fact that by comparison to the Lions environment in particular, no other code got or gets a look in. So I was hoping that my mob would have a great stirring win.

Which they didn’t, they played well enough of course and indeed as has been the case a few times this year were reminiscent of the Lions of old with quick ball movement from defence to goal but the problem was that Adelaide had passages of play which were better yet.

The first quarter was of course even enough but I have to say that it was a bit embarrassing the way that Henderson was allowed to almost run the length of the field almost and goal without any Lions defender going near him. Still, from a Crows perspective that would have been great. What was great though for us was a transition from Hanley at half back, to Rich to Zorko to Martin and subsequent goal. Martin could be a great acquisition from Melbourne if can offer an alternative to Brown who was either out of sorts or outplayed by Rutten or both. Taylor Walker looked dangerous, what a prospect he is although he was psyched out of a goal at one stage later on in the game.

The second quarter saw Adelaide get ahead with Rory Sloane proving a handful. Green got a great goal for us and Pearce Hanley was playing a great game from the half back line with most of his disposals being effective. He has improved so much.

Brisbane won the third quarter but they weren’t ahead enough to be really confident that they could get up, but they were at home. Both sides were the recipients or victims of really soft 50 metre penalties. It suited me fine but I really couldn’t see why  Zorko received  the fifty that resulted in his goal.

Adelaide played really well in the last quarter but Dangerfield’s first goal of the quarter was the result of a “misbounce’ which should have been recalled and the second must have gone horribly close to hitting the post. All the same Sloane was still killing us. We missed really gettable shots, Karnezis, Rockcliff and Hanley being very close, in fact one “poster”. Brisbane played well but I just hope that it is not no Brown, no Brisbane. One really positive thing to come out of the game was the return of Leuenberger. How much have we missed him? Really encouraging for a first up.

Overall, at the time of the viewing I was disappointed in this game, perhaps because my crowd didn’t get up, but having reviewed it, it was a real cracker, it being a close game with both teams showing real skills, toughness and resilience in not easily giving up possession by the dint of relentless tackling. The final result was not indicative of the difference between the two sides both of whom will be finals contenders.


Adelaide 2.3 7.6 9.11 14.12

Brisbane 2.3 6.5 10.13 10.17



Adelaide: Walker, Jenkins, Petrenko, Dangerfield 2, Henderson, Sloane, Douglas, Reilly, Jacobs, Jaensch

Brisbane: Martin, Green, Zorko 2, Polkinghorne, Hanley, Rockliff, Bewick


Adelaide: Sloane, Dangerfield, Thompson, Douglas, Rutten

Brisbane: Hanley, Moloney, Rockliff, Zorko, Leuenberger

Umpires: B. Ryan, Stewart , H.Ryan

Official Crowd: 21,308

Our Votes: 3 Sloane (Adel), 2 Dangerfield (Adel), 1, Hanley (Bris)

About Peter Schumacher

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


  1. Bob Utber says

    “The Shoe” – 32’s first goal was the result of brilliant football and maybe a poor umpiring mistake but que sera sera. As for the second it was a ripper que sera sera.
    Blood is thicker than water and those solos using two different feet were fantastic.
    Should apologise for writing this but I wont of course.

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