Cam Hooke’s Collingwood Life: Round 14 Review / Round 15 Preview


True Believers, g’day.


What a game? From 54 Points down in the Q3. Simply unbelievable. Truly the ‘Amazing Magpies’. But let’s ensure we don’t forget the context – North played good football. There is no way you could assess the game on the basis of Ladder position or, worse the final result last year. North’s performance was simply outstanding. More below.


‘Miracle comeback’ (AAA); I don’t think so.


Go Pies.


Round 14


Collingwood 18.11.119 defeated North Melbourne 19.4.118.


Scoring shots 29 (us) / 23 (them).


Go Pies.


Match Have a look at the Match Timeline here to understand just how the game evolved, particularly Q1 and Q4.


Coach’s Worthwhile listening – He emphasised the North capability, noting their exceptional Midfield, and their endeavour with an outstanding work rate.




  • Q1      2 (us) / 8 (them) – I’m not sure we actually saw the ball during the Quarter apart from our game start goal. North were pretty magnificent establishing a 35 Point lead by the first change;
  • Q2      4 / 6 – More dominance by them, but at a slower rate. A 48 Point margin at the main break;
  • Q3      6 / 4 – They got the first goal of the 2ndHalf setting up our 54 Point deficit. Then a bit of a reversal by us, but probably not too much to concern the North players but reducing their lead to 31-Points at the final change; and
  • Q4      6 / 1 – Then, we took charge, taking the lead back very late; so
  • Total:   18 /19; a Win by 1 Point.


Numbers. The numbers should be treated with some caution because they are a record across the whole game. In this game we dominated in Q4; they certainly did Q1 and Q2. However, with some comments, they are interesting:


Statistic Numbers

Us / Them

Disposals 300 / 368 To highlight the game dynamism, at the first break (so including all of Q1) we had a deficiency of 50 so the Disposals number for the rest of the game was fairly even.
Hit Outs (HO) 40 / 36 This surprised me. I thought Cameron did a good job but, as always, it is the next step where we fell down – Clearance. The difference here is not overly significant because it is not ‘HO to advantage’ . For real significance see next.
Clearances 38 / 40 Includes: 16 / 20 Centre clearances and 22 / 20 stoppage clearances.

This is hugely significant. What is notable here, and accordingly significant, is how close the numbers are and that they do not reflect our HO advantage.

‘Clearance to Inside 50 to Goal’ is the ideal progression. Here, the Midfield is broadly equivalent See Next.

Inside 50s 48 / 51 Again, a comparison of Q1, we had a deficiency of 10 meaning our numbers for the rest of the game were higher.

This is also significant, but only insofar as how close it was to reflecting the Clearance numbers. Given the numbers are a comparison of the number of times the ball is in a position from where a score can result it usually flows from the Clearance numbers. The challenge? How effectively did each side use it? See below.

Disposal Efficiency (DE) 69.0% / 74.5% Not too different. Not particularly useful, anyway, across the whole game.
DE inside 50  62.5% / 52.9% This is a critical difference identified above. This is where you see how effectively the teams use their entry into the 50 – and we recorded a substantial advantage compared with them. With very similar Inside 50 numbers, our advantage here should have constituted a match-winning statistic. In essence both sides got the ball into the 50 with similar frequency but we used it far more effectively.
Players with DE of 80% 7 / 10 Not hugely significant. I thought the standard of ball-handling skills by both sides was very clean.
Contested Possessions (CP) 142 / 145 Again, a comparison of Q1, we had a deficiency of 11 indicating that for the rest of the game we dominated, but not by much.

The measure of how hard each team is working – CP, Tackles and Turnovers combined. Not hugely different between the sides – it was, of course, very different at different times – their Q1; our Q4 (well, most of it anyway).

Turnovers 59 / 67 Really important – see above.
Marks (M) 56 / 101 Across game.
M inside 50 11 /16 Again, a comparison of Q1, we had a deficiency of 6. Same regarding CP.

Impacts on DE inside 50 numbers.

Tackles (T)  61 / 62 Across game.


T inside 50 10 / 15 Also impacts on DE inside 50 numbers.


1 %’ers 52 / 28 Really important as a demonstration of application and commitment and it showed throughout the game with the exception of Q1 when they ran around us.

Courtesy Pat Sowry: One percenters:

Moore 9; Dean 6; Frampton, Sidebottom, Maynard 5, the rest were 1s and 2s.

Goals scored 18 / 19 All that matters (mostly). I usually expect Goal and Behind numbers to be close for any team. Here the goal kicking of both teams was outstanding; theirs even more so than ours. So Behinds count. Watch the scoring shot counts.
Free kicks 24 / 14 I thought the umps did a better job. The faster decisions for ‘caught with the ball’ were most welcome.My principal concerns were with the failure to pick-up many head-high tackles. The number difference here doesn’t reflect what I saw during the game. See my later comment regarding Clarkson’s comments, below.


The Game


This game should never be assessed on the basis of sitting Premier versus last placed team on the Ladder. North played convincingly throughout. Unfortunately for them, the Pies took note of what was happening at the first break and slowly worked back into the game, exploding into Q4. The team was missing seven Premiership players, had seven players with less than 20 games.


The game fell into three parts:


  • Q1. They dominated, apart from the first goal. They ran around us and kicked superbly between their teammates. It is almost impossible to be critical of their play at that time. We, on the other hand, barely saw the ball and when we did, their pressure applies unusual outcomes on us. When watching, I suppose my expectation was “When are they going to turn this around?” Didn’t happen in Q1. We looked slow and couldn’t kick to a target to save ourselves;
  • Q2 and early Q3. A closer competition between the sides dominated by them for periods, particularly earlier, and the same by us, later. But they built on their margin at each break, though more slowly as the game progressed. Their early goal in Q3 set the margin of 54 Points; and
  • Mid Q3 and Q4. And everything changed – we scored seven, unanswered goals until the last few minutes of the game. We started dominating the Midfield, the ball was passed accurately and quickly to good goal-kicking locations and we scored, repeatedly. And North players looked defeated and dejected quite early – not quite sure why, as their margin did not disappear quickly – they still had a 31 Point margin at the final break. Matthew Lloyd credits Collingwood’s ‘surge football’, taking risks, running in waves in the success on their pressure.


Interestingly the tag on NickD seemed successful for the first half of the game, but when released NickD cut loose starting in Q3 earning his Best inclusion after a quiet 1st Half. I still think that more needs to be done to counter this tagging.


Other changes, like Howe moving forward, clearly worked – he kicked the winning goal (actually the goal drawing level; I checked Bobby got the winner), but this move detracts from the backline, perhaps an acceptable risk given the way the game evolved.


And, we really miss Pendles (others, as well, of course) regarding his on-field coaching and management. I think the dire straights we ended up in in Q1 might have been significantly changed with him there.


Really good to see Clarkson not blame the late umpiring decisions for the game outcome.


From a Pies’ supporter’s perspective this was not an enjoyable game to watch – way too much stress. That said, it was a great game of footy and end-result met our requirement. Many thanks to all.


All, enjoy the break. No stories from Bali please.


The result: The Pies are now sitting 3rd on the Ladder but are likely to drop outside the Top 4 after next weekend. Keep an eye on the Essendon / WCE game next weekend. If Essendon Win, they’ll go past us on the Ladder. Further, the Geelong / Carlton game and the GWS / Port Adelaide game both may result in teams passing us, subject to their percentage after the game. Personally, I’d recommend you keep an eye on Hawthorn, Western Bulldogs and North Melbourne – I’m not sure how their timing works and doubt they will make the Finals, but they sure are playing good football.


Best: The AFL website identifies the following as Best – Hill, NickD, Crisp, Schultz, Sidebottom and Cameron. Don’t disagree but would have added JoshD – 20 Disposals @ 55% DE and 460 metres gained and Hoskin-Elliott – 16D @.68.8%DE and 6 Score Involvement and 7 Intercept Possessions.


Injuries: Howe went off with a blood nose but was back, good enough to kick the winning goal (actually his goal drew level; Bobby’s won the game).


Crowd – 38,311. Disappointing given it was between two Melbourne Clubs, even at Marvel.


Round 15




The Future


  • Round 16. Saturday, 29 June versus the Gold Coast Suns at the GC; bounce at 4.35pm. Broadcast TBA.
  • Round 17.  Friday, 5 July versus Essendon at the MCG; bounce at 7.40pm. Broadcast TBA.




  • VFL. Remember the VFL side making the Finals is important because it maintains the ability to have AFL players returning from injury, etc, to get some game time after the VFL H&A season ends (Round 21, 18 August) flowing into the Finals. After a pretty disappointing 41 Point Loss to North Melbourne last weekend, the VFL side, with still 10 games to go, is reasonably placed to make the Top10 into the Finals. Of note Bytel did well on the weekend – 37 Disposals, 6 Clearances. The team is sitting well down the Ladder but there is time. Round 14 on Saturday, 29 June is versus Essendon (our 19th versus their 17th) at Windy Hill; bounce at 1.05pm. Anyone attending? Briefs please? Go Boys.
  • VFLW. The ladies are actually better placed to move up into the Top 6 Finals. They demolished the Darebin Falcons (12th on Ladder) last weekend. Their next (final H&A) game is against Williamstown (sitting at the top of the Ladder and should provide a fantastic opportunity to bolt into the Finals) at Victoria Park on Saturday, 22 June; bounce at 11.00am. Go Girls.



Ground Reports? Now I’m not sure who went to the last game. Did anyone go to the NM game? I’d like to hear from the armchair warriors watching from afar?  More please.


Always believe. Go Pies.





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