Cam Hooke’s Collingwood Life: Rounds 1 and 2

Firstly, a very warm welcome to Jess. We met at the Casino Royale evening at the Harden/Murrumburrah Country Club. A great success raising money for two hugely deserving community charities – the Harden District Education Foundation, providing scholarships to locals for further education, and Flexible Care, providing transport and other support to particularly older local citizens to attend key appointments further afield. Well done to both organisations and to all those who enjoyed themselves. Jess, this is just a bit of fun, enjoy and we look forward to hearing from you.


Greetings to everyone, all True Believers. Now that wasn’t much fun, though I might suggest we understand where we are in the Season and just relax a little. There’s a long way to go. That said, I’m going to assess the game, below, to identify a few shortcomings (and strengths) in our performance. But, let’s lay off the “sacking” suggestions on Facebook. Please.


Round 1

Western Bulldogs 10.9.69 defeated the Pies 7.11.53

Extraordinary things we saw (just a couple):

  • Mihocek having a shot from 60m when there were players, open and better placed, (7.46 minute mark of Q1; watch it). Selfish. Need to emphasise Goal Assist numbers in preference to Goals;
  • Pendles (and I would acknowledge this does NOT happen often) – dropping a sitter mark and, on another occasion, being caught with the ball;
  • Howe, welcome back. Some great marks in varied positions. Same for Moore; and
  • Treloar (You just knew it was coming, didn’t you?) surprised me. His first kick went direct to his teammate recipient, so at this point he had a Disposal Efficiency of 100%. But reality stepped in – he finished the game with 18 Disposal with a DE of 66.7%. So? He achieved, statistically, 12 effective Disposals. Not an effective day at the office for him? Your views (and lets please avoid ’emotional’ arguments)?

Some other statistics and comments:

  • Hit Outs – 46 (us) / 19 (them). I have to say, I find this statistic hard to believe, but it doesn’t matter because the next one is all-important. In broad terms Grundy and Cox were beaten by the Martin / English combination. This was especially evident around the ground where English dominated. It was not a great display;
  • Clearances – 32 / 38. From a massive disadvantage the Bulldogs reversed it. This reflects very poorly on our Midfield (all of it);
  • Inside 50s – 41 / 60. Again, the statistics between the Clearances and Inside 50 does not flatter us;
  • Uncontested possessions – 180/304. Yep, they got the ball and kept it. Their kicking and handball were simply outstanding. Handball numbers are illustrative – 119 / 206. Early on I was convinced the ball must have been slippery, however watching their performance I had to acknowledge our basic skills were simply awful. Marks Inside 50 also show something: 5 / 11;
  • Disposal Efficiency – 71.2% / 78.1%. This is a significant difference, though Inside 50 this was only marginally different between the teams. Of course, the major difference was the number of Inside 50s; not the DE. Worse are the individual DE – well done to Howe (100%), Moore (94.4%) and Maynard (85.7%) but they were the only three with a DE over 80%; the WB had 10. We had 6 players with DE equal to or under 60% (look them up if you want). This not good enough; and
  • Tackles – 52 / 57. Bucks also highlighted this. He considered it a reflection of team pressure. Don’t disagree, particularly given our past claims to this.
  • Winning margin. We were fortunate to be so close during the game – a bounce here, a bounce there could have changed the game – there were a number of 12-Point turn-arounds (a failure to score a goal for us immediately heads up the other end of the ground resulting in an opposition goal). Bucks referred to ‘gilt-edged’ opportunities. But we didn’t deserve to Win; they did. Their commitment and application and basic skills were terrific; unlike ours; and
  • Scoring Shots – 18 / 19. Close, wasn’t it?


  • Back 6 – well done. A great performance.
  • Crumbing packs, both behind and in front?
  • Midfield collaboration? Hit Out numbers are useless, unless turned into Clearances? Buck’s comment on Grundy’s performance in his interview? Very telling.
  • Emphasise Goal Assist in preference to Goal numbers?
  • Bucks emphasised the absence of adequate ‘supply’ to the Forwards rather than the Forward line performance. Not sure I agree. The delivery needs to have alternative entry avenues.
  • Have a look at the VFL practice match against Footscray (Report at h ) – some pretty solid performances. While I would always be hesitant about changes (particularly wholesale changes) based on one game there are things to like about many in the VFL side.


Plus? Pull the highlights of Adelaide’s performance against Geelong. Want to see some application?


Round 2

Carlton versus Collingwood. Yep, the olde enemy.

Thursday, 25 March at the MCG; bounce at 7.20pm.

History. We’ve only met three times in the last few years, winning each time:

  • 24 June 2018: Pies defeated Blues by 24 Points;
  • 11 May 2019: Pies defeated Blues by 19; and
  • 30 March 2020: Pies defeated Blues by 24.


Looking at last year’s game,  and their recent Community Series Loss to St Kilda there are some lessons (noting this Loss is still, essentially, a practice match):

  • In last year’s game Carlton led us for much of Q2 and Q3. In fact, they were 10 Points up mid-Q3. This is not too different to their Community Series match where St Kilda established a 20 Point margin early in Q2, a margin that stayed in place until the 10-minute mark of Q4. So? In both games Carlton slowed down in Q4 after a mostly competitive performance. For us? Play hard for four full Quarters;
  • Cripps is critical in the Centre. Note the Midfield of Cripps, Curnow and Walsh excludes the ruck. This should provide an outstanding opportunity for Grundy to shine. Cripps is also emerging as a Brownlow favourite. So? Maybe tag him;
  • Their Best overlapping both games include:
    • Walsh (rover);
    • Setterfield (wing);
    • Weitering (CHB);
  • Others to be watched (in addition to Cripps, above) are:
    • Saad (HB);
    • Newnes (wing – injury test);
    • Curnow (ruck rover – out injured);
    • Casboult (FF – injury test); and
    • Eddie Betts (Who to put on him? I love watching this incredibly annoying, but highly talented, player?).
  • The Blues should be respected as a team but remember they are The Enemy.



  • Expect Sidebottom to come in to replace Hoskin-Elliott.
  • A changed Interchange to include:
    • Quaynor;
    • Sier;
    • Cameron; and
    • Greenwood.
  • Lynch / C.Brown / Rantall – Emergencies and potential inclusions (Lynch – Medical Sub).

Specific tasks: As above, under Them.

Game Plan:

  • We need to run hard for four Quarters starting with the domination of the Midfield – measured with Clearances;
  • Our Forwards must get into the habit of providing multiple concurrent leads to divide the opponents’ defence. And look for better positions to kick at goal from;
  • Back 6. Keep up the good work; and
  • Midfield. Right now we have doubts about our Forward line, our access to Goal. Keep De Goey forward; let Sier have a decent period in the Midfield. Alternate De Goey into the Midfield only as necessary. Crisp had a run in the Midfield last week – I’d suggest nothing be done to unbalance the Back 6; and
  • Lift individual player Disposal Efficiency – we can’t continue to waste our possessions.

We can Win this well and get the season started properly. Your thoughts?


My Picks. Collingwood to Win by 37 Points. BOG – Grundy – 43 HO, 11 personal Clearances, five Tackles and one goal; Elliott, De Goey and Cox each get two goals. Mihocek has five Goal Assists. Your thoughts?


Weather – Rain (and some snow) is forecast. Another of my favourite bitches: ‘Stops’, not moulded sole, boots.


Experts – Later for Round2. I look forward with great amusement to those occasions when the experts are all (or most) wrong – see how they picked for Geelong / Adelaide.

TV. FTA – 7mate from 7.00. Routine for FOXTEL and Kayo.



An appeal. Guys, this should be a two-way flow of views and opinions. Pls consider this and contribute. Remember we are all ‘family’.


Go Pies.




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