AFL Round 23 – Adelaide v St Kilda: In Enemy Territory

On this fateful day last season, when the Saints played the Crows in Adelaide, I learnt a life long lesson. That lesson was, ‘Do not sit with your significant other at the football when they barrack for the opposition.’ I repeat, DO NOT SIT WITH THE ENEMY.

When the opportunity arose this year for my St Kilda supporting boyfriend and I to head home to my native state to watch Lenny’s last game I couldn’t knock it back. However being a Crows supporter and making the mistake of sitting beside him the last occasion our teams played, this time around I ensured there would be plenty of distance between us.

So Mr St Kilda was relegated to the Adelaide Oval Hill, his choice mind you, and with his Saints supporting dad it tow. I was a safe distance away, with my dad, in the Fos Williams section of the new eastern stand.

Both sides were playing for pride after the Tigers knocked off the Swans the previous night. This meant that Richmond secured the final spot in the top eight and there was no way the Crows could make it in. Conversely, St Kilda had all but secured the wooden spoon before the first bounce because really, were they any chance of conquering the Crows?

We got off to a typical slow start as the Saints slotted a couple of goals on the board early in the game. I must admit an element of doubt started to creep into my mind as we had been playing some ordinary footy of late.

But fear not the Crows soon kicked into gear and we finished the first term with a 12-point advantage.

We broke the game open in the second quarter kicking seven goals to St Kilda’s one. This saw us with a very comfortable lead of 51 points at half-time.

At this point it was time to check in with Mr St Kilda on the hill. Now let me first say that he informed me pre game that he would be more than happy for his side to lose so they could claim 2014’s number one draft pick, so when I called him I thought he would be reasonably pleased with how the match was panning out.

Instead, I was greeted with a conversation that went a little like ‘insert expletive here’. He wasn’t happy with his team’s performance, which was fair enough, so I then took on the task of reminding him he actually wanted the Saints to lose.

Nevertheless it sounded as if he was having a good time with his fellow supporters on the hill and his dad hadn’t complained yet about having to stand up all afternoon, so that was a win!

After play resumed for the second half it didn’t take long for Lenny Hayes to break the all time tackling record. FYI Hayes finished his career with 1496 tackles, six ahead of ex-Swans Jude Bolton, after laying 13 all-up against the Crows.

While Lenny had his moment in the third term it was Ben Rutten’s time to shine in the fourth. The retiring full-back kicked just his ninth, and final career goal, when Eddie Betts dished off from a set shot to set Truck up who slotted the running goal beautifully.

When the final siren sounded on two superb careers the Crows had recorded a 79-point win over the Saints. Perhaps the most pleasing moment of the day was the dual guard of honour formed by both teams to send off Hayes and Rutten.

Perspective had dawned on Mr St Kilda when we caught up post game, perhaps a sense of relief even that the Saints’ season had come to an end. I was much the same in my opinion on the Crows.

Most importantly for me in the end was that the day’s separation between my Saints man and I was a success. There were no cold-shoulders and no hard feelings. I can confidently say the practice of avoiding your opposition-supporting partner is 100 per cent approved.


ADELAIDE    4.2   11.10    15.5   22.9 (141)

ST KILDA     2.2     4.5      8.7     9.8  (62)          



Adelaide: Betts 5, Sloane 3, Walker 3, Lyons 2, Kerridge 2, Podsiadly, Mackay, Douglas, M Crouch, Smith, Dangerfield, Rutten

St Kilda: Armitage 2, White, Ray, Schneider, Murdoch, Stanley, Jones, Montagna



Adelaide: Sloane, Jacobs, Smith, Betts, Talia, Dangerfield

St Kilda: Fisher, Steven, Dempster, Montagna, Hayes, Jones



Adelaide: Nil

St Kilda: Nil



Adelaide: David Mackay replaced by Mitch Grigg in the third quarter

St Kilda: Billy Longer replaced by Brodie Murdoch at half-time



Adelaide: Nil

St Kilda: Nil


Umpires: Fleer, Farmer, Armstrong

Official crowd: 44,969 at  Adelaide Oval

Best: Betts, Smith, Sloane


  1. Sound advice Anne – although I still favour conversion.

    Sorry to tell you this, given your role, but don’t trust the AFL report – the role of Mitch Grigg was admirably performed by Matt Crouch on the day.

  2. You’re right Dave! I should’ve picked that one up.

    For AFL Media’s sake the game’s match report came from AAP and not our local reporter.

  3. Anne,
    As a Kangaroo who has been married to a passionate Bulldog for over 20 years, I am sure I am speaking for my wife also when I tell you that it does not get any easier.

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