AFLW Round 4 – Melbourne v Collingwood: Comfort Eating through the third quarter blues.

Melbourne v Collingwood

5.40 PM CST  Traeger Park, Alice Springs


Alice Springs, population 20,000 – about ten per cent of them are at Traeger Park in what can only be described as brutal conditions. It’s 36 degrees in the shade. I can’t even walk to the mail box when it’s that hot, yet here are some of Australia’s fittest women giving it a red hot go in the centre of the nation.


Collingwood start off in complete control, shutting Melbourne down, playing ‘keepings off’ with the ball, but they can’t convert their kicks. About six minutes in we get the first score – and it’s Melbourne’s Kate Hore with a steady goal.


Collingwood’s plan seems to be to keep Daisy Pearce out of action. That’s fine, but it takes extra players to cut Daisy down, and it frees up other Melbourne players to make mischief. A sloppy bit of play near Melbourne’s goal results in a free kick, played on to O’Dea who makes the next goal look effortless.


The Dees keep the Pies scoreless (always a joy to watch) and kick two goals two.


This could have been a fun report to write if the game had ended there. Unfortunately, Melbourne had three more quarters of football to play and Collingwood had brought secret ingredients with them to the red centre: guts and determination.


The Pies turn the tables so effectively in the second quarter I wonder if the players have changed footy jumpers instead of just ends. Now it’s Melbourne’s turn to be scoreless while Collingwood takes control. A couple of scrappy points get them on the board, and then it’s a Hope kick to Bernardi that sets them up for their first goal. With a minute and a half left, Bernardi kicks another which doesn’t quite reach, but then Hope grabs it and kicks it in.


Barely a minute later, I keep hearing the same names because Bernardi kicks it to Hope and it’s another goal. Hope isn’t bouncing around. She’s curling into the pain rather than standing tall like someone who’s just kicked two goals should be.


At the break, ice vests are in high demand. The cameras show Mo Hope in the change rooms, looking ready to collapse. I wouldn’t be surprised if some of them were having a quiet spew, and not just the Melbourne players from shame at their poor second quarter performances.


This is Melbourne’s game to lose. Do I have to keep writing?


Yes I do.


There’s a saying amongst writers; to create great characters, give them hope, then pull it away, because ‘It’s the hope that kills ya’.


In watching the Dees v Pies match on Saturday night, I came to realise the painful truth: It’s the Mo Hope that kills ya.


In the third quarter, she comes back from physical distress to kick beautifully to an umarked Edwards right in front of the goal, who converts all too easily. I barely have time to take notes before Kuys kicks another for Collingwood and it’s time to start comfort eating.


Alas, not even Aldi’s limited edition Pina Colada mocktail icecream offers solace.


Oh look, Melbourne gets another free kick (they’re expensive!) and Mifsud (who’s had a quiet match) kicks properly and keeps Melbourne within sniffing distance.


If the third quarter was where Collingwood drove the first few nails into Melbourne’s coffin, the last quarter was where they got out the nail gun and hammered it home.


Three more goals in the final quarter go to Collingwood who look like they’re having fun. Melbourne can only answer with two more points.


Dammit, Dees, you were being touted as possible flag contenders and now it’s like the season’s already over.


Best players: 3 Hope (Coll) 2 Bernardi (Coll) 1 Ice Vests (Coll).

Q1: Collingwood 0.0 (0) Melbourne 2.2 (14)

Q2: Collingwood 3.2 (20) Melbourne 2.2 (14)

Q3: Collingwood  6.4  (40)  Melbourne  3.4 (22)

Final: Collingwood 9.4 (58) to Melbourne 3.6 (24)



Melbourne: Hore, Mifsud, O’Dea

Collingwood: Hope 2, Edwards 2, Bernardi, Barden, Chiocci, Hutchins, Kuys



Melbourne: Smith (concussion), Cranston (hand)

Collingwood: Nil

Reports: Nil

Umpires: Galbraith, Crosby, Broadbent


Official (or estimated) crowd: 2000 approx. at TIO Traeger Park



Ebony McKenna was a contributor to The Women’s Footy Almanac 2017. Read more about the book HERE





Ebony McKenna is a total show off and has trouble shutting up. The most important reason she's here at The Footy Almanac is because she's Rod Oaten's daughter.


  1. Yvette Wroby says

    Love the line that Hope kills… Mo Hope that is. I was watching Daisy as she shook all the hands and she was shattered.

    Do you think she will play on next year? Such a competitor.

    Great report!

  2. I really want Mo to get more goals and attention. I felt she may have been a little overhyped at the beginning, but she’s really coming into her powers now and it’s excellent to see.
    All the teams are playing so well as teams.
    Daisy has to come back next year, she’s got too many sponsorship deals to stop now, LOL.

  3. A firing Mo Hope is good for footy I reckon.

    I think Paxman was a bit stiff to miss out on your bests, Ebony; she tried hard and won a fair share of contests in the first half. Hard to argue she had a greater impact than the indomitable ice vests though!

  4. Thanks Jarrod – Ha, I do try and have a bit of fun with the points. Paxman was amazing. She’s like an engine that keeps everything ticking over. I should give her more.

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