Cam Hooke’s Collingwood Life: Bye Bye, it’s on again


True Believers, last week was terrific. Onward and upward. Hope everyone, including players and supporters, enjoyed the week off.


A slight detour to start. Bucks has been criticised fairly strongly in the last year or two based on our performance. I want to restate Sal’s observations from last week (particularly for the Footy Almanac readers who otherwise would not see them):


Two things about Bucks yesterday that may have been missed; both non-game observations:-


  1.        Most of the coverage re the 18 coaches sliding in the ice bath left Bucks out of their articles/photos and focused on the coaches showing their ‘lighter’ side.  You’ll be hard-pressed to find the Buckley plunge unless you read the Herald Sun. Reason why is that he didn’t dress up in ‘costume’ of any sort but in firefighter uniform. He did this to respect a fireman (and Pie supporter) he’d been introduced to by Neale Daniher. The fireman, Murray Swinton, was recently diagnosed with MND and was at the game with his family. Bucks wore the uniform and Swinton’s own helmet for the plunge. Swinton was in the rooms and put in the middle of the players’ circle when they sang the song after the game.  This is an example of the Buck’s personal values that aren’t publicised.


  1.        When it was Buck’s turn to plunge, he was happy to wait his turn and didn’t ask to go on first even though he had coaching duties to attend to in an hour’s time.  To leave his team and fellow coaches to organise themselves before their huge game speaks volumes about his attitude and approach. When it was his turn, the Pie players, who were on the ground warming up, all came over to watch his efforts. We were close enough to see their faces and witness first hand the admiration and respect they had for him. Their laughter amongst them said a bit about how they’re relating to each other.


This is the side of our team that we don’t see much of. Pendles was interviewed recently and he said that the atmosphere at the Club is the best it’s been in recent times. Even after 12 yrs he says he looks forward to going to training. The bet Bucks has made with his backline players resulting in his awful beard also says something about the camaraderie there.


The on-field actions speak for themselves.   The off-field actions are even louder.


Thanks Sal; well said. And if this needs reinforcing go to: We should be very proud of the actions by Bucks, the players and the Club. Well done. And, Mr Swinton, as a fellow-Pies’ supporter, thanks for that support, and good luck wherever life takes you.




A final comment on the Melbourne game –

(Observation 7). Worth a very quick read.


Next: Sunday, 24 June at the G; bounce at 3.20pm; the ‘olde enemy’, Carlton. I can hardly wait.




This game is between 6th and 18th; 118.6% and 61.9%; 8 Wins to 1. But Carlton have been competitive, but usually not for the whole game and their consistency, week by week, has been just awful. Going back a bit, following their sole Win over Essendon in Round 8, they Lost to Melbourne by about 100 points. The following week they Lost to Geelong but were level with them throughout the game apart from the first 10 minutes of Q1 and the final 10 minutes of Q4. More recently, they Lost to Sydney in Sydney (but then doesn’t everyone?). Then a Bye and last weekend, against the Freo Dockers, at Etihad, they were hammered (12 goals to none in the First Half. Cripps versus Fyfe – both on their Best lists: Cr – 38 Disposals @76%; F: 30 Disposals @90%). And a team that has performed so badly the week before, can bounce back. I think they are better than their one Win indicates. We should win, and win well, but it won’t be without effort.


Who to watch for? Cripps (Centre), Casboult (FF), Simpson (HB), the Curnow brothers (Wing & CHF), Kruezer and, yep, Daisy (runs off HF line if you’ve forgotten him). Also watch for Silvagni and Pickett maybe returning.


We last met in Round 3. We Won by 4 Goals, though they won the scoring shots 21 to 20. And excluding our total dominance between the middle of Q1 to the middle of Q2, they stayed with us. In fact, we were very even in Q3 and, technically, they won Q4. In that game Casboult (FF; 4 goals), both Curnow brothers (W & CHF), Cripps (C) and Murphy (W) all performed. Our Best included Sidebottom, Grundy, Hoskin-Elliott, Thomas (5 goals), Crisp and Reid.




How could you change last week’s team? Even my perennial concern regarding our FF is no basis for a change – Cox did well, superbly supported by the other Forwards. So, there are no grounds for any changes and Moore, Elliott, Reid and Varcoe will need to establish some game time through the VFL.


As a caution, I remember Carlton’s Win over us last year – an appalling performance –


What do I want to see this week (and every week)?


  • The Mids’ work at the stoppages linking Hit-outs to Clearances. Keep improving.
  • Continued great performance by the Back 6 (or 7).
  • Continued crumbing around packs, particularly in the Forward line – not everyone going for the mark.
  • Effort and intent shouldn’t stop. Well done, last week. Go get em. And don’t be concerned at mistakes – don’t play ‘safe’.

Following? After Carlton we have GC up North and then Essendon. Then, the fun really starts with games against WCE (at the G), North, Richmond and Sydney (at the SCG) before a reasonably soft finish for the season against Brisbane (God only knows how they’ll be playing by then, Linda), Port and the Dockers. My bet? Pies in the top 4 by the end of the season.


My picks: Noting that beating Carlton figures amongst my “successful season” criteria, this game is important. My pick: Collingwood by 47 points. BOG – Greenwood with 23 Disposals limiting Cripps to 13. Reid back with 7 goals.


  1. TV. No FTA TV. Find a friend with Foxtel.


Supporter Heaven. Footy supporters (actually, Pies supporters) look at this: If you can’t open it, check the timings and locations for next Sunday.


  • It could be a great Sunday. Reports pls?



  • Next: Sunday,  24 June, Round 12 vs Northern Blues at the Holden Centre; bounce 11.30



  • Next: Sunday, 24 June, Round 7 vs Carlton at the Holden Centre; bounce at 4.45pm.



  • Today, Sunday, 17 June a close Loss to the Giants 63 to 60, coming back from a significantly greater margin. The Giants are sitting 2nd on the ladder. The closeness of the game is indicative of our potential. Match Report at
  • Next: Sunday, 24 June, Round 8 vs Melbourne Vixens at the Margaret Court Arena; tip-off 1.00pm. The Vixens are placed above us, but below the Giants, on the Ladder. Go girls.




  • Today, Sunday, 17 June; 11.00pm – Richmond vs Collingwood – No result yet.
  • Next: Sunday, 24 June – Skills session and practice matches at Boroondara Sports Complex, 271C Belmore Road, Balwyn North.


Other sports, Canberra:


  • GWS – Saturday, 11 August; bounce 7.25pm vs Adelaide.
  • Raiders – Sunday, 17 June –  away – Wests Tigers.
  • Brumbies – Next game Saturday, 30 June; kick off 7.45pm – Home game – Hurricanes.  More on this later.





Go Pies.




  1. george smith says

    I think that 5th or sixth with a home final is a more realistic proposition this year rather than top 4. Given that our usual victim Adelaide and the ol’ Showponies won’t make it this year, what do we want?

    We have not beaten Melbourne in a final since 1958, so a chance at payback there would be good. An MCG final against the annoying GWS with 90% of the crowd on our side would also be useful. Finals between Hawthorn and Collingwood stand at 4-3 their way so a chance to even the score would be handy.

    Then week 2, a Sydney final against the Swans would be good for us Sydney and Canberra Magpies. Sadly the big stadium will not be available because the Swans hate it. Any of these scenarios with a week one finals win would mean a year of consolidation after the horrors of the last 5 years.

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