AFLW Round 7 – Melbourne v Western Bulldogs: Footy. What an emotional rollercoaster

Western Bulldogs vs Melbourne
7:10pm March 17th
Whitten Oval, Melbourne
Alyce Collett



A week is a very long time in footy.


After last weekend, I knew what the Dees needed to do. I couldn’t wait. I was excited, but I was also nervous at the same time as I made my way to Whitten Oval. I had replayed the possibilities in terms of results in my head, and how I was going to feel. As I got comfortable in my seat and realised that more and more people that were coming to sit around me were Dogs supporters, I did start to feel like the odd one out. In hindsight I suppose I should not have been surprised. I was at the Dogs home ground after all.


The first quarter started just how I wanted it to. The ball was in the Dees 50 for the majority of the time. They put on plenty of pressure and the Dogs had to work hard to get it down their end. Melbourne were a team on a mission.


I held my breath halfway for a moment about through the term when Sarah Lampard went down with what I believed was a knee injury. I remembered that she had just come back from an injury and  realised just how unfair the situation is. Football can be cruel sometimes.


Boy emotions can change quickly. For most of the 2nd quarter I was feeling very worried. The Dogs kicked three easy goals and I couldn’t help but start to think the worst. Thankfully Karen Paxman kicked a goal late to keep the Dees in it.


The third quarter started, thankfully like the first. The Dees’ pressure was up, and they were a team on a mission again. They were only able to get one goal for the quarter, which was a little bit annoying considering how many opportunities they had. The goal surprisingly came from someone who a few weeks ago would have been the unlikeliest of sources – defender turned midfielder Katherine Smith.


I was a bit surprised when she was first put in the midfield because for as long as I’ve known her she’s been a defender. But in my opinion, putting her in the midfield was a stroke of genius. I’m not saying she is a bad defender, but she appears to have flourished in her new role.


Have you ever felt like the world is conspiring against you? Well, that could sum up how Dees fans were feeling in that last quarter.


When there was 90 seconds to go, the Dees had the lead and I dared to dream. Yes, I dared to dream.


That turned out to be a mistake.


Once the final siren went, I felt absolute heartbreak, something I am just not used to or have ever felt before in my life. I had even prepared myself pregame for the worst, as you do when you are a Melbourne supporter. Even then, nothing can prepare you for how you’re going to feel.


I did cry when the final siren went. I tried not to, I know I should not get so emotional, but sometimes you just can’t help it. I was on the verge of bursting into tears the whole trip home. I reflected and tried to work out why I was feeling the way I was, because to me it didn’t make sense. It’s just a game after all. It made me realise how emotionally invested I am in this team. Years ago, I would have never even dreamed of this league existing, let alone my beloved Demons being in it from day one.


Despite all these negatives, I should take a moment to reflect on the season that has been and think about the positives.


I am immensely proud of my Dees.


They have given me more joy and reasons to be proud of them in two years of existence then the men’s team has given me in about 15 years. Sure, they’ve broken my heart two years running, but I’ve got faith in them that they’ll get the ultimate success.


One thing that has impressed me this year is the Dees’ new recruits, particularly Teagan Cunningham and Erin Hoare. I was a bit confused when we drafted so many players that hadn’t played the game, and even though Hoare had played footy before, she hadn’t played much. Boy did I underestimate the quality of footballers they would be. In my opinion, they have been the finds of the season.


So, as I’m so used to saying as a Dees supporter, bring on next year. Fingers crossed that next year will finally be our year.


Go Dees!


Western Bulldogs     0.0     3.2     3.2     5.3     (33)
Melbourne                 1.1     2.1     3.7     4.7     (31)

Western Bulldogs: Kearney, Brennan, Berry, Lochland, Conti
Melbourne: Cranston, Paxman, Smith, Hore

Umpires: Mirable, Dore, Johanson



  1. Yvette Wroby says

    Well said Alyse. It is hard when those friends you’ve come with (us) all screamed in happiness when the Doggies got in! Note to self: next time we’ll find Almanackers to sit with us who are Melbourne. There were a few scattered around the ground it seems. It is a terrible feeling when all around you others are celebrating and your heart is breaking. I think you could also see how shattered the team itself were, and that doesn’t help. That’s what brings me back to earth. A win for one is a loss for the other. The nature of the beast. Will you be joining us for the Grand Final??

    Look after yourself and thanks for your company and contributions.

  2. Kasey Symons says

    Great report Alyce. I can’t imagine what it would have felt like for Dees supporters when Brooke kicked that goal with a minute to go – after reading yours and a few other Almanackers reports the heartbreak is coming through strongly. Take care of yourselves Melbourne fans xoxo

  3. Hi Alyce

    I understand how you feel. It’s really hurting, isn’t it?

    You are a passionate Dees supporter and your club would be happy to have such a great fan. Girls will remember emotion and kick goals with these feelings next season.

    When I watch my Saint boys are on action, I always get nervous. So I understand your senses whilst watching your Demons playing.

    It’s good to let emotion out. I hope you are feeling better by let your chest out.

    For me, I need to put all emotion on footy while kicking. I need patience to improve my playing skilks.



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