AFL Round 6 – Port Adelaide v Geelong: Retribution at last



Dan Hansen                                                                           


During the pre-game build-up one of the commentators said that this was the first meeting of Port Adelaide and Geelong at Adelaide Oval. Unfortunately the commentator is misinformed, as the Port Adelaide Football Club had first hosted the Geelong Football Club at Adelaide Oval on the 21st of July 1879. Of course some people may say that the Geelong that fronted up for round six of 2014 was a different club to the one that took the field in 1879. After all, this was the Cats and one hundred and thirty five years earlier the club playing was known as the Pivotonians. They may also argue that the Geelong Pivitonians were playing in the Victorian Football Association and they became a different club when they entered the VFL as the Geelong Cats. They may also say that because Geelong opted out of the 1943 season that the continuity isn’t there and that in 1944 Geelong became a new club. As a last resort these nah-sayers may also play the ‘legal entity’ card. Geelong became incorporated through ASIC in the mid seventies therefore becoming a different legal entity. Some may argue that this makes Geelong a new club established in 1975. The problem with the people that put forward these arguments is they don’t understand what a club is. A club is not its nickname, it is independent of the competition it plays in and it is definitely not defined by its official legal status.  Make no mistake, this was the same Geelong Football Club that back in 1879 embarrassed the Port Adelaide Football Club by scoring 8 goals 24 behinds to a solitary behind.


The Round 6 game was first versus second on the AFL ladder, as it was one hundred and thirty five years earlier. Albeit there was no AFL in 1879 but Geelong was top of the VFA and Port Adelaide were second in the SAFA. Many of the pundits were saying that this is Port’s opportunity to prove its credentials. Others were convinced that this was the same Port Adelaide that lost to the Gold Coast and GWS in their inaugural years. But this was a new Port Adelaide. It has been said that the way a team plays often resembles the way their coach played. Under Mark Williams, it could be argued, that Port was a dogged, determined team that played percentage football and only took risks when required. Under Matthew Primus Port resembled a bunch of plodders that played safe more often than not. Ken Hinkley’s Port Adelaide has been different. Hinkley was a dashing defender who took the game on. He would often leave his man to take the intercept mark and without breaking stride he would rebound the ball. Under Hinkley Port has gone from one of the teams that used to kick backwards the most to one of the teams that kicks backwards the least.


The game itself had a finals-type intensity. The first half was remarkably similar to Geelong’s victorious semi final last year. Geelong had their periods of dominance as did Port. The Port players took the game on, ran a bit more and went into half time with a deserved three goal lead. However we all remembered what happened in the semi final last year. In that game Port Adelaide worked hard for a four goal half time lead only to have it blown away in about ten minutes. There was a real fear that the same could happen again.


The second half was the complete opposite to what had happened at the MCG seven months earlier. Instead of Geelong wiping away Port’s lead in ten minutes, Port doubled their lead in five. From that point on Port’s lead varied from twenty four points to fifty points until the game ended with a forty point lead. The statistics showed that the teams were evenly matched. Both teams had the same amount of inside fifties and the contested possessions were similar. Port simply ran a bit more and created more opportunities in their forward fifty. Carlile managed to keep the dangerous Hawkins to two goals and wasn’t scared to run off him when required. Boak’s inside work was highly influential and Lobbe was sensational in the ruck and around the ground.


After the game there was a lot of talk about Port getting the Geelong monkey of its back and that they somehow had a bit of redemption for the 2007 Grand Final. However this was not about the last ten games nor was it about the 2007 Grand Final. Payback for the last Saturday in September seven years ago can only be attained at the MCG. This was retribution for the eight goal “pants down” victory that Geelong inflicted upon us at the Adelaide Oval one hundred and thirty five years ago … and, boy, was it sweet.



PORT ADELAIDE      4.2   8.3    13.6    16.11    (107)

GEELONG                 4.4   4.9    6.10    9.13      (67)



Port Adelaide: Wingard 3, White, Boak, R.Gray, Hartlett, Lobbe 2, Young, Schulz, S.Gray

Geelong: Hawkins 3, Walker 2, Johnson, Horlin-Smith, Blicavs, Bartel



Port Adelaide: Boak, Lobbe, Carlile, Cornes, Hombsch, R Gray

Geelong: Duncan, Stokes, Johnson, Kelly, Horlin-Smith, Varcoe


Umpires: Fleer, Meredith, Mollison


Official crowd: 47,007 at Adelaide Oval


Our Votes: 3 Boak (PA), 2 Lobbe (PA), 1 Carlile (PA)



  1. Well done Dan. You Port supporters really know how to hold a grudge. And you have long memories!

  2. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Good report on the game , Danny Valdemeer , Valdemar holiday handbag hurricane
    the dane ,Hansen .you no my thoughts on the other crap

  3. Peter Schumacher says

    I really liked your report in particular the way that you built up in the first paragraph the fact that the club is everything irrespective of the path it has been on to get to the present. And even as a died in the wool Norwood supporter and even 135 years on it pains me to think that yet again a South Australian side got beaten by those terrible Victorians.

  4. Dan Hansen says

    Peter, If it’s any consolation Norwood pushed Geelong in 1879 in a game described as the “best match which has ever been played in the colony”.

    Although it could be argued that the Norwood in 1879 was a different club to the one that won the SANFL premiership last year. After all in 1879 they played in a different jumper, weren’t known as the Redlegs, they played in a different competition and in September 2002 they became an incorporated entity through ASIC therefore becoming a new club.

  5. Nick Raschella says

    Nice report Dan. Yep retribution for 2007 can only happen in one place in September and 1 point is enough.

    Some people will live a life time and never understand the following bit you wrote

    “The problem with the people that put forward these arguments is they don’t understand what a club is. A club is not its nickname, it is independent of the competition it plays in and it is definitely not defined by its official legal status. “

  6. G’day DV!

    Book, you forgot “Domestic Violence” as one of DV’s nicknames), given for his infliction of the same in 1996 in A4/A4R “Grade from Hell”. As an older “hard bodied” player (much like myself at the time), one of our small handful of players who had little or no fear in that Grade, and would go toe to toe with tatooed bogans quite happily (in fact, I think we both enjoyed stirring them up!)

    Re “WE ARE PORT ADELAIDE” – I think I’m gonna cry ;-)

    I have 4 children and 3 of them have been very well educated – and are Port supporters, and hence now expect a lifetime of reward. Unfortunately one of the risks in living in Melbourne (for nearly 15 years now), is that one’s kids have Victorian friends at Victorian schools, who most regularly go for Victorian teams, and I’ve lost Ben to Richmond – but 3/4 ain’t bad.

    Lastly, I agree, full redemption since that dark day in 2007 can only come with another Premiership… if we keep doing exactly what we have been doing, without derivation, it is very achievable in the near future. What a list we have! Extreme talent and/or extreme determination on every line.


  7. Peter Fuller says

    I think that the appropriate piece of history which Port’s avenged on Sunday was their brave but ultimately fruitless effort in last year’s semi-final. Most of the same players (and both coaches) involved, and a strong hint of Port continuing their progress. I agree with other posters that it doesn’t begin to wipe out the ignominy of the 2007 GF capitulation.
    Congratulations Dan on your sense of history with the reference to the 1879 match. I strongly endorse Nick R.’s approval of your point about the true nature of clubs.

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