Close Roy victory like pulling teeth.

by Derrinalphil


Had a bloke come into see me on Saturday morning. He needed a tooth out and having a look at the radiograph, I thought to myself, “piece of cake.” This looks easy and it started out that way. He went numb straight away and the top of the tooth came away as planned. Then it happened. The bloody thing would not give up so out came the surgical setup; scalpels, periosteal elevators and bone burs. Can I let you into a secret? I love a bit of surgery. Remember “only cold steel can heal”.

At the old Brunswick Street Oval (sorry the WT Peterson Community Oval) against Camberwell Old Boys, it was the same:  it started out well but then it happened. Things got difficult. We dug deep and got there in the end. Just like my extraction it was a great feeling when the final siren rang or the last root came free. Had it closed over with a few sutures, looking clean as a whistle (think having a few beers after the game) but not showing the battle that had raged previously. For the second week in a row, we played one very poor quarter of football.

What a battle we witnessed, but before I go there, let’s go back to derrinalphil’s week in football; down to the North Fitzroy Arms, with Mrs Derrinalphil on Thursday night for tea. My Grandfather was a publican and bookmaker but it is the “trouble and strife” that loves a raffle. She grew up with Methodists, who hate gambling, so she is a sucker for a raffle. Gareth, the barman who always buys a ticket, won the meat raffle again this week, but donated the prize back. I won it the second time around but you had more chance of hearing praise for the umpires today than Mrs Derrinalphil giving up her prize. I won the second prize but gave it back and this was the last loss for the week.

Ninety people at the Reds Foundation Lunch. What a club we now have at Fitzroy. Camberwell have a group of wealthy supporters who fund the club, big property developers but we have a supporter-based club and it showed on Saturday. I have some news; the Serafini family have come on board as a player-sponsor. Don’t know who the sponsored player will be. Fran Bromage, whose husband was a Fitzroy player, has joined the Reds Foundation as well. The momentum is continuing.

We missed out on percentage today!  I really mean this. While everyone was  fixated on the nature of a dying- minute win, the scor board does not lie. We had fifty per cent more scoring opportunities and, apart from a fifteen minute period when Camberwell kicked six unanswered goals, we dominated play. Viewed dispassionately (something I do not recommend) we could/should have won easily.

What happened in that second quarter? I was up the other end, up our end where the ball was not, and with the rain coming down, it was hard to see the play at the other end of the Oval. And the ball was up the other end all the time. EVERY ONE was whinging about the umpires but, in this brief period of time, the game was being played in the Camberwell fifty metre arc. We were murdered out of the centre and the Camberwell pressure did not allow any easy transfers of play. Brian, that footballing guru from Seaford, had remarked at quarter time that four goals, two out on the full, and seven behinds was a score that might come back to bite us.

I believe the players thought the game was over at quarter time. With the easy win last week and dominating the first quarter, players thought it was going to be a cake walk. A Tim Killworth coached team does not lie down.They wanted the ball more than we did for a short period and let’s face it. Kicking six straight, in those conditions, well luck is a factor in all sport. Tim’s address to his Camberwell players after the match was along the lines that if a loss like that doesn’t hurt, something is wrong. These sentiments parallel what Pickers said after our loss to PEGS.

The third quarter was an arm wrestle, really the only quarter that was an even contest.

What about that last quarter?  You will all download the thing so I won’t go through my notes taken at the time but it started out going the wrong way. Their ruckman was dominating the clearances but Two Dads, that awesome competitor, never gives up and was an influential player at the end. Ross Borland was in everything, playing forward, fighting and scrapping, winning contested ball, loose ball and one easy chest mark. Parko and the Eastern Distributor, aka Johnny Clark, were repelling any Camberwell advance and distributing the ball to our forward line.

Right at the end, Speckie, who had a great game, ran onto a spillage fifteen yards out. He had exhaustion screaming on his face. His kick off the ground missed by a mile but we locked it in. Speckie, my boy, don’t take up soccer.

We now have three games coming up against teams below us on the ladder. I reckon today we thought it was all over at quarter time and took our eye off the ball. We cannot afford to do this again, especially in the next few games. Wins are paramount but percentage may determine where we finish up.

See you all out at Monash and remember; it always rains at Monash.


Fitzroy 11.19.85 d Old Camberwell 13.6.84






  1. Great stuff, Phil.
    Ammos footy is alive and well in many different guises.

  2. John Harms says

    Well played Doc.

    Loving the extraction.

    Unfortunately the weather precluded me from getting the kids down there. Another day.

    Where does the ‘only cold steel’ line come from?

  3. 11. 19 (85) to 13 6 (84) interesting.

    There was a drawn game in Southern Tasmania last weekend. 8.31 (85) to 13 7 (85)

  4. Wrong score. 9 . 31 (85) to 13 . 7 (85)

    Had to take my shoes and socks off to count.

  5. Hamsie,

    There are a few surgical sayings that are now very old fashioned and the “cold steel” one is one of them. Try “a chance to cut is a chance to heal” for size. Or “never let the sun set on pus.”

    I will try to use them.

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