AFL Round 21 Post Wrap: The Birth of the Blues Round


Round XXI Post Wrap

Where life imitates Football

What a round in Football Eddie.  The Cats proved once more that GTWTCO.  Buddy celebrated his 200th game with a 9-5-1 match and a resounding Swans’ victory against The Saints.  In conditions ranging from beautiful to perfect, or so the Bananabenders tell us, Port consolidated their September credentials by finished in front of The Ablettless Suns.  The Western Wedgies blew their season when they blew a six goal lead under relentless pressure from The High Flying Syringes.  And The Tigers of Old beat The Crows in the rain in The City of Light.

There have been numerous emails about the fact that we omitted any pre-round mention of Collingwood.  With paranormal foresight we thought it would be tacky & tasteless to speak ill of the dead.

Come Sunday and The Kangas hopped away with the Four Points against The Bullies, GWS took them against The Tankers, and Freo strengthened its Top Four credentials.

Will no one rid us of this wearisome scandal?  On and on it goes, doesn’t it Wrappers?  Now there’s a call from the Chairperson at Whingy Hill, to we suppose Merlin the Magician – to have the whole thing go away.  He may as well try the Wizard of Oz, or even Mandrake – there’s no end of candidates with powers more potent than the Sports Minister of the Commonwealth of Australia.  A request BTW that we, here deep in the Wrapcave, heartily endorse.  Apart from the incompetence of the key authorities in this squalid saga – incompetence that at times could be mistaken for something ranging from dysfunction to a state of funk – there remains a few unanswered questions.  For instance –

  • If Essendon insist that they don’t know what was in the syringes stuck into their players with such reckless abandon, and under such dubious circumstances, how can they then put their hands on their heart and declare that their pharmacological experimentation was legal within the rules laid down by WADA? As hazy as those rules were at the time.
  • Those samples from the Essendon dressing room that were sent to Cologne throw up another conundrum. From all we’ve read – and remember we’ve had a dedicated team on this case from the very beginning – after the samples left the country, there’s been no mention of them other than to say No action was taken. (You might leave yourself open to accusations of mischievousness here Wrap. In Saturday’s Sage it was reported that someone from the AFL told a conference over in Zurich that the tests proved negative – Ed.) Over in Zurich? Why not say it here then Oh Masterful Masher of Prose? If this year’s HSC English Expression exam paper asked the candidates to write a thousand words on what, in the context of the circumstances that could mean, No Action was taken, there’d be high fives all round as they left the high-domed intimidation of the Exhibition Buildings. The possibilities are boundless, and Edward de Bono would laud the open question for not intimidating the imagination with the possibility of a correct answer. (If you wanted a de Bono hat Wrap, it would have to be the Mad Hatter – Ed.)
  • How, in the search for truth, as has been the Melrose Drive mantra all along, would the way in which the evidence was collected contaminate it? Are we to presume that given the opportunity, the answers volunteered under Essendon’s self-reporting would be different if given the option of legal instruction? Or that we would have seen the cone of silence lowered on the grounds that any evidence provided may incriminate the provider? If there were any integrity in the first tract of answers, sure the same questions would elicit the same answers?
  • As an alternative topic on community values in Sport the more philosophically minded English Expression candidates could be offered 1,000 words to answer the follow (include reasons & precedents).  If, as rumour and reliable sources confirm, the Essendon board is only 50% behind the return of the Anointed One, and the Chairperson has it put it about that the board, the players and the coaching staff are 100% behind it, whom do you believe? And if you were Shoeless Jim, which statement would you be most worried about? (That didn’t come out of the enquiry Wrap. Tighten it up will you – Ed.)

Now here’s something that Stan from Stradbroke Island might like to tease out.  The Footy Almanac run an August Ladder competition, one that carries healthy prize money and is professionally run by Andrew ‘Gigz’ Gigacz.  You know the drill; you gain a point for every place your end of August selection is off reality.  In other words, low is good, high is bad.  The leader had lost 20 points to round XX.  He had 8 teams in their exact rung and another 6 only one rung off where they were at the end of the round.  Trying hard to get their money back was Dunny Long Shot on 154.  But the median was 44 and most punters were under 60.  The interesting thing about these statstist … statical … stisticals … facts & figures is this.  Gigz has included the ladders at the same time for years going back to 2005.  It’s not quite a linear digression, but there is a clear changing of the guard.  (Point being Wrap? – Ed.)  Point being Oh Yee of Little Intellect or Patience, that the drafting system is working, as clearly demonstrated by the ladder movement over the seasons.

Observe these readings –

Year  Deviation  Grand Finalists

2014      0        Not sure yet, but let’s say out of Sydney, Geelong,

Hawthorn & Fremantle.

2012    40       Sydney & Hawthorn

2013    60       Hawthorn & Fremantle

2007    72       Geelong & Port Adelaide

2008    78       Hawthorn & Geelong

2011    84       Geelong & Collingwood

2010    90       Collingwood & St Kilda (twice)

2005    90       West Coast & Sydney

2006    100      Sydney & West Coast

2009    102      Geelong & St Kilda

Notice a reoccurring theme?  Three names keep flowing through the Grand Finalists – Sydney, Hawthorn & Geelong.  Might it have something to do with the way a club is run determines its ultimate success?  However, eight of the 18 clubs have played off for Glory on TLSIS over those nine years.

But enough of my yackin’, let’s see who’s going to be holding the gun after Round XXI.

The Miseries v The Catters.  The Cats with Nine Lives gave their fans some bragging rights on Friday night, but their coach will be wanting to take to them with the cat ‘n nine tails on Tuesday night.  They kicked 5-11 in the second half, including 2-8 in the Championship Quarter, to give The Silvertails a sniff.  But cream rises to the top, even when the milk is curdled.  Highlights for us were Gibbs & Murphy’s skills and nous, The Big Tomahawk’s presence, slowness and kicking yips which were counterbalanced by Motlop’s superb skills and kicking, although he too had his share of the yips as The Moggies butchered opportunity after opportunity in the Third Stanza.  Our standout highlight for the night was of course Mick the Maltster’s job application.  We stayed up to catch his presser – after all, his Beloved Bluebaggers once more snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.  But no, he was as charming as a Spring rose garden.  (Some SOTG sensed a suppressed seething, but the power to suppress a natural negative impulse is a step in the right direction.  Eliminating it altogether is another matter – Ed.)  The job’s his for the taking you’d expect.  Next week The Miseries are off to the Picturesque Adelaide Oval to take on another September candidate – Port Adelaide.  The Pivotonians line up against The Mayblooms.

The Battle of the Lakeside – the Junction Oval Seagulls v The Emerald Hill Swans.  The Saints were brave, but bravery will only get you so far when you’re up against the Raging Premiership Favourites.  And hey, Buddy’s lazy nine lifted him six clear of his old forward buddy at The Family Club.  With The Undermanned Doggies next Sunday under cover he could easily clinch his 3rd Coleman before the season ends.  The Feeling Faints have The Rampaging Tigers on the Big Stage to close off the Penultimate Round of the Home&Away Series for Season 2014.

The Gold Coast Sunbeams v That Old Port Adelaide Aggression.  Beautiful one day, perfect the next.  Well, that’s what the ducks are saying up on the Gold Coast.  This was an endurance test and a clear reminder that football is a Winter Game.  The Power hang onto 5th rung for a home opening finals’ match against the Also Rans of September.  They have The Bluebaggers under the Shadows of Mount Lofty to open proceedings for Round XXII.  The Suns get some relief from the weather when they tackle The Dons under cover next Saturday at the traditional time.  They have had a terrific season, and may have lost some momentum when The Little Master fell to injury.  They can look to next season with confidence built on hard won respect and Self Belief.

The Club That Dare Not Speak Its Name v The Western Wedgies.  Fair dinkum, love ‘em or hate ‘em, you can’t help but admire The Whingy Hill Mob.  Gone for all money at the Long Break, they ran all over The Eddie Eagles in the Second Half to all but book a place in September.  With The Ablettless Suns on the Shifting Sands next Saturday arvo they look all but home.  And you can put your first born on Dyson Heppell for The Fairest & Best.  This kids a vote magnet.  The Mothers of Melbourne have already voted him the boy they’d like their daughters to marry, and remember, umpires all have mothers.  (Though some unkind SOTG may suggest a few of them would have trouble naming their fathers – Ed.)  The Weagles are back home next week to host The Fuchsias.  They really must take a good hard look at themselves over there in The West.  Three times now they’ve looked to have the Four Points in hand over in Bleak City, and three times they’ve capitulated.  Two points in the Final Stanza with their season on the line; 3-2 for a half of Football in the air conditioned splendour of The Dumb; coughing up a four goal half time lead.  If anyone can think of a better word for it than capitulation, please drop us a line to The Wrapcave, PB 1, The South Pole.

Collingwood v Brissy.  The blackest day in Australian sport?  Can’t be far off it.  Certainly the blackest day at the Westpac Centre for some time.  Maybe the black cat that cursed the Crows was meant for Carringbush.  Who knows?  But it’s put paid to September for Bucks & his charges.  They have a real Danger Game up against The Breakfast Point Juniors before closing off the season against a percentage hungry Hawks.  Never mind September, just getting through these two contests with pride and credibility intact will be challenge enough.  The Maroons have now won three of their last four and Lipper and his team are quietly building Self Belief up at The Gabba.  They test themselves in the Lion’s’ Den against The Anchormen next Sunday.

The Pride of South Australia v Struggletown.  Com’on, just one more time.  Follow the bouncing ball if you don’t remember the words.   It’s a catchy tune and you’ll be hearing a bit of it over the next few seasons.

We’re from Tigerland

A fighting fury

We’re from Tigerland

In any weather you’ll see us with a grin, ouy

Risking head and shin, ouy

If we’re behind well never mind we’ll fight and fight and win

For we’re from Tigerland

We never weaken till the final siren’s gone

Like the Tigers of old

We’re strong and we’re bold

For we’re from Tiger – YELLOW AND BLACK!!

We’re from Tigerland

That’s it.  Belt it out.  Pump that fist on the YELLOW & BLACK.  Although September may be a Season too far for the Tiges, they’ll go into the following season in far better shape mentally that they did this one.  They’ve got some very fine youngsters and mid-experienced recruits coming through giving the club a new energy and attitude.  Add that to the maturing Cotchin, Deledio and Martin and you’ve got a team that can challenge the best of them.  (I notice you didn’t include Jumping Jack amongst the maturing group Wrap – Ed.)  They have The Junction Oval Seagulls to close off Round XXII on the People’s Ground, then The Bloods up there in Round XXIII.  September’s a big ask, but not impossible.  You’d imagine The Chardonnays will be training in hair shirts on Tuesday.  They took control of this contest towards the end of the Championship Quarter and were storming home to victory before The Tigers unleashed an effort that outmatched the intensity of The Rabid Adelaide Mob.  And while it can be argued that The Mob may have influenced the trend of the adjudication, one that didn’t go their way was Sloane’s bouncing shot on goal.  Let it be stated categorically, right here and now in the Wraproom, the goal line video review is going to cost someone a Grand Final one day.  (You don’t want to review Freddy Swift’s mark on the goal line in the 1967 Grand Final while you’re about it do you Wrap? – Ed.)  We’ve been over that a thousand times Oh Worldly Wordsmith, the Cheer Squad at The Punt Road end were unanimous, the mark was taken inside the field of play.  But getting back to The Pride of South Australia. They’re in the Eight on percentage, courtesy of Richmond’s poor goal shooting in the 3rd Quarter when they dominated play, but play The Shinboners on the Little Ground at The End of Latrobe Street for the early one next Saturday followed by The Feeling Faints in The City of Churches.  There’s a good chance they’ll play in September.

North Melbourne v Footscray.  North did enough to win, and The Scrays did enough for self respect.  North face firmer opposition next round when they drag The Unwooded Chardonnays down to the Blundstone Arena for some Football in The Raw for the early one on Saturday.  For The Sons of The West it’s back to the Shifting Sands to host South Melbourne.

The Fuchsias v The Leviathans.  Never mind HSC students, here’s one for the preppies.  With a 3-16 (34) score line on a dry day, on your home ground, with 17,218 of your Fanatical Redleg Faithful cheering you on, you would be entitled to ask – when is a tank not a tank?  We had a quick whip around the subbies here at Wrap Publications for an answer.  With their usual elastic wit and worldly wisdom hands shot up everywhere.  Challenging the claim that the art of imagination is lost, they came up with a range of plausible answers.  When it’s a jam jar?  To get to the other side?  When it’s a butterfly?  Can I please go to the bathroom?  It took our Girl on The Front Desk to bring some mundane reality to this perennial teaser.  Nurelle said that if it looks like a tank, clunks like a tank, and has tank written all over it, it’s a tank.  (Can we say their Senior Consultant has been vindicated; old habits die hard? – Ed.)  The Fuchsias rumble across the Nullarbor next Saturday to take on the State of Excitement’s major disappointment.  The Orangemen get another chance to Make A Big Big Sound To The West Of The Town when they take on The Remnants of Carringbush in Saturday’s gathering gloom.

The Mauve Miasma v The Leafblowers.  In a round where several teams developed an attack of the yips in front of goal, The Mustard Pots kicked 4-7 in the Opening Stanza.  In the Second Term the fans – mostly Knowledgeable Fremantle Faithful – were treated to an all out attack as The Purple Haze kicked 7-3 to The Mayblooms’ 6-2.  But that was it.  With The Pav & Mayne cutting loose, and The Iconic Zac leading the Stevedores’ boa constrictor defence, The Dockers squeezed the life out of the Roughie & Rioliless Hawthorn attack, restricting them to 3-4 while their own forwards piled on 7-5.  The Leafblowers slip back across the Treeless Plains of the Great Australian Bight to regroup against their old rival and nemesis Geelong.  With The Woodsmen not being expected to field a senior team by Round XXIII, they finish with the bye.  On percentage, which they worked hard to protect against Freo, they should finish top two with a win against The Moggies.  The Barry Crockers are off to tackle The Bad News Bears under the palms next Sunday in the early one.  They finish with Port back on the balmy Indian Ocean shores of Western Australia.

And remember, if you read it in The Wrap, you’ll know it’s not crap.

About John Mosig

I'm an Aussie Rules tragic who can remember, as a four year old, shaking the hand of Captain Blood in the rooms just before he ran out onto the ground after half time, as my Old Man slipped him a packet of under-the-counter Craven A cork tipped. Now it's my turn to take my grandson Ben through the ritual of character building that is the journey through PUNT ROAD to the outside world.


  1. I would comment on your perceptive analysis Mr Wrap, but my interest in football has been overtaken by a sudden hunger for penguin meat and seal blubber.
    I may be gone a little while.
    Captain Scott (Robert – Brad and Chris’ long lost uncle)

  2. A sad time indeed for High Flying Birds, Kings of The Big Game Mr B. Actually, you had every Tiger in Melbourne cheering you on. Wha hoppened? And why does it keep happening?

  3. Wrap – the Tigers win was superb. It cements them into 9th place.

    Great questions of the Bombers who are as bent as Chopper Reid’s elbow was. I love the Essendon argument of “We didn’t know what was going on, but if we did we’re sure it wasn’t illegal.”

    I’d love to receive $800 per hour to dismantle that.

  4. Why are you asking me Mr Wrap? I got 4/9 in the Almanac tipping comp, and 5/9 in the work comp that I gave up on a month ago and just get given the home teams.
    I am letting Shandy the Wonder Dog tip for me next week.

  5. $800 an hopur Dips? Is that all they’re paying? Cheapskates. No wonder it’s being drawn out for long.

    That’s not a bad system that Mr B – getting Shandy the Wonder Dog to tip for you. Do you think he’d be willing to take on the coaching job at The Weagles too?

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