AFLW Round 3 – Collingwood v GWS: Someone was finally going to take home the points

Last week I broke the cardinal rule of not standing under a tree in a thunder storm, this week I had the comfort of the couch with no one to interrupt me.


I’d done some work on my thesis (about which we shall not speak again) and a bit of housework, so I could get settled in time for the whole 5 minutes of lead-in that Fox Footy gives us. Apparently Phoebe McWilliams had had a ‘scare’ – her fingers had to be taped in the warm up – and Heath Shaw had offered to pay for dinner for the entire GWS team if they won. My sister once promised my son $5 for every goal he scored in a game. He was so desperate for the money he was taking the ball from his team mates. Thankfully, Heath had the smarts to make this a team thing. And as Fridge said, he can afford it. She mentioned some Vietnamese might be on the cards.


As the commentator helpfully reminded us: neither of these teams had won so far this season, so today someone was going to win. Mo Hope and Meg Hutchins were back for Collingwood and I was very glad for both of them. I just hoped neither of them came back with a bang. Next week? Go for it. Chloe Molloy started up front, which was frightening. She may have played most of her football up front but whoever decided to play her down back is a genius. I was worried about what might happen if she got a shot in her natural slot. At least it would be good to watch.


The first quarter was Collingwood’s, with enviable goals from Bonicci and Chiocci. A lot of the quarter was played in one corner of the field as the ball continually crossed the line on the full or was deemed to fall under the lasso rule. The players seemed to find the wind difficult to predict, or that was what I was hoping. Not being at the ground it was hard to tell. The Giants were also half asleep. They needed more from Emma Swanson, Renee Forth and Jodie Hicks particularly. At quarter time they had 2 disposals and 1 tackle between the three of them. Alicia Eva, on the other hand, was stunning.


The last two weeks seemed to have knocked the confidence out of the Giants. They’d played well, for no result. Today they were tentative. They weren’t doing the basic things, like kicking to a target and taking marks. They needed to believe in themselves, and frankly, they need to be given a rocket.


I don’t know what McConnell said at quarter time but it worked. Perhaps it was a rocket. The Giants came out with more purpose and belief, just not a lot of accuracy. Great forward 50 pressure but 5 straight behinds, with Cora Staunton being guilty of some of the worst of it. She was blazing away at goal impatiently, kicking around her body, not confident with her drop punt. Four straight behinds, then gave away a 50. How long is she going to be given a licence? In the third round, it’s testing to watch. Then she got a nasty hit with what seemed to be a raised elbow in a tackle. She left the field, and no one could blame her.


The pressure of GWS suddenly paid off: two goals for Aimee Schmidt. The Giants rediscovered their expansive, quick style of play. It started with Bennetts’ quick hand pass to Swanson on the run and ended with Dal Pos’ smart ball over the top to Schmidt. This was better.


It was also in the second quarter that the umpires decided to apply the rule or rather, suggestion, of having 5-6-5 at restarts. They refuse to start play until everyone was standing in their memo-delegated spots. I’ll make no further comment about this.


The third quarter was all over the shop. The Giants were trying to play ahead quickly to stop Collingwood setting up their defence but in doing so they seemed to have forgotten that at some times it’s ok to slow down. McWilliams inexplicably hand passed off quickly after marks, one of them a fantastic mark on the lead, about 40 metres out. Both times the ball was turned over. Decision making, ladies: you’re killing me.


Fortunately for the Giants, Collingwood couldn’t put enough quality possession together to take full advantage of the Giants’ stutters. They did put enough together though to go in to the break with a lead. Hope dribbled in a speculator and no one could begrudge her that. A text from my sister in law assured me it was a “sweet goal”, and it was for Hope.


The fourth quarter? COURTNEY GUM. (Text from sister at this point: “New drinking game: take a swig every time the commentators mention that Gum or Hutchins are 36”) Gum’s work rate is ridiculous. Oh yes, and Phoebe McWilliams. Cramping up, marking, kicking goals. Staunton was back on, trussed up with her nose spread over her face, but digging in. The Giants lifted across the ground. This was what I saw at in the trial game against Brisbane and against Melbourne in Round 1. They fought, they held their marks and they kicked true.


I was punching the couch on the siren. FINALLY. They get what they deserve. Get out your credit card Heath.


I feel for the Pies women. I don’t know what is going on at Collingwood. There’s no doubting their commitment but Hope seems hollowed out, unsure and distracted. Chiocci seems frustrated. The team as a whole are turning over the ball and making mistakes. When the captain of your male team tweets “Who’s looking forward to footy being back on the screens tonight?”, referring to AFLX, it’s not the whole story but it’s a sign. You have to ask if the women are getting the support they need. Footy is footy is footy.


Collingwood  2.3   2.4   4.5   5.5 (35)
Greater Western Sydney 0.1   2.6   2.6   7.6 (48)

Collingwood: Hope 2, Bonnici, Chiocci, Duffin
Greater Western Sydney: Schmidt 2, Gum 2, McWilliams 2, Barclay

Collingwood: Bonnici, King, Lambert, Molloy
Greater Wester Sydney: Eva, Gum, Farrugia, Barclay

Rawlings, Adair, Burns

CROWD 3600



A Swans AFL member and a GWS AFLW member, quickly developing conflicting allegiances. Trying to finish a PhD but footy keeps getting in the way. Mother to a teenage half-forward who sometimes plays at half-back.


  1. Kasey Symons says

    Excellent report Georgina – your Giants certainly stood tall yesterday. That drinking game your sister suggested is genius! Though with the rate those two women’s ages are referenced I think I would be asleep after the first quarter!

    Thanks for writing – KS

  2. Thanks Kasey. The age thing does get mentioned a lot but my goodness, it’s great to see. I am in awe of them.

  3. Yvette Wroby says

    Warrior footy. Collongwood in a world of pain and now GWS has something to prove. Love McWilliams. Thanks for your report.

  4. “Get our your credit card, Heath.” Yes indeed.
    And Courtney Gum’s game definitely was worth capital letters!

Leave a Comment