FPS: Whatever it was, the Pies should bottle it

It was always going to be an interesting week.  We haven’t had to worry about the Pies on the rebound for the best part of 12 months so I was keen to see how they’d handle it.  I know they lost to the Hawks in Round 22 but the Pies were always going to be ‘up’ for the Qualifying Final against the Doggies.  Furthermore, the Crows usually play OK against the Pies…think back to a cold and wet MCG one Saturday night late last season.  The Crows are also having their own player and coaching issues so deal with so there was a significant element of uncertainty going into Sunday.

The Pies too have been hard to read so far.  Most weeks they’ve done what they needed to without being really convincing.  Clearly there’s some tinkering happening at the Westpac Centre, not just with player selection but rotations as well.  Despite getting lots of the ball, Swannie hasn’t been himself recently and Didak is way out of touch.  I was surprised to see him as the ‘sub’ this week.  Paul Harkin and I both felt last Friday night that it was time for a run in the VFL for him.  I’m not quite sure what sitting on the bench for three quarters was going to achieve.  He wasn’t going to find any touch there and if he was there as an ‘impact’ player who kicked two or three in a quarter, it didn’t happen either.   Last week we were on the bad end of a 22 tackle differential against the Catters, the biggest such thumping the Pies have had since 2001.

An Under 13 soccer game meant I was going to struggle to be at Etihad by 1.10pm.  I wasn’t filled with confidence when number two son Nick’s East Bentleigh Soccer Club led 3 – 1 at half time only to be overrun by Aspendale in the second half losing 4 – 3.

I told Paul Harkin I’d need his thoughts.  Paul’s always happy to share his ideas and opinions particularly when they’re not asked for.  He was reasonably upbeat at quarter time despite groaning that the Crows kicked their goals from right in front whereas we persisted in attempting to convert from all sorts of odd angles.  We were being beaten at the stoppages but had been fairly competitive.

The second quarter started where the first had left off…a quick Crow clearance and a shot from thirty metres out right in front.  A Krakouer miss and a Blair ‘poster’ followed.  Number one son Rich told me Krakouer had minus 1 Supercoach points at quarter time which roughly translated meant he hadn’t done much.  The Blair point was his first touch for the game.  From there, everything that could go wrong, did.  Skill errors, turnovers, poor decision-making, little defensive  pressure and innacurate kicking for goal saw the frustration meter rise to extreme levels.  The Crowies could have been much further than five goals in front at half-time.

Perhaps a Malthouse bake would do the trick.  To their credit the Maggies did bring an intensity to their game (and a Tarrant to the forward line) after the break.  They began winning contested possession and some individual brilliance from Daisy, Shaw and Krakouer gave the crowd some hope.  However, the Crowwies seemed to have their measure and kicked quite easy goals which deflated somewhat the Pies comeback while maintaining the scoreboard gap between the sides.

Who would have imagined what was to follow….

Early in the last the teams went goal for goal and you just sensed that Adelaide might have had the Pies measure.  Six minutes in and we were still 23 points down.  Suddenly it all clicked.  Perhaps it was superior fitness as the Crows, who had run hard all day, began to tire.  Perhaps it was Krakouers mark of the year that almost lifted the roof off the stadium that inspired the riot.  Perhaps it was Daisy’s 55m torpedo.  Perhaps it was just another example of a side doing what it needs to at this stage of the year and trying to save its best until much later in the season.

To the votes…

3… Daisy: inspirational and ferocious and the 55 metre torp was the icing on the cake
2…Pendles:  a prolific ball winner who fought hard all day even when things weren’t going right

1…Luke Ball:  a terrier with 25 possessions and 7 tackles

The Grantley Fielke Medal goes to…Daisy!!!

An interesting aside…hope Leigh Brown is OK for next week.  We’ll need him for Cox and Naitanui in the absence of Jolly.  He is the second player in AFL/VFL history to have played at least 50 games at three clubs, the Pies, Fremantle and North.  He’s played 230 in total.  Can anyone name the first player to achieve this feat??????

We’ll need to be at our best next week against the rampaging Weagles!!!

Go Pies!

Phil Cornell


  1. Alovesupreme says

    A wild stab and without consulting the record books: Adrian Fletcher.

  2. Danielle says

    we may not be able to ‘bottle’ what happened to cause the crazy turn around- BUT fans sure can bottle some Alan Didak sweat, that is if you are crazy enough to wring it out…yes im talking his match worn jumper for a small fee of $655.00 with another 7 days of bidding left! Says its unwashed, problem is, Dids didn’t sweat enough, he was a SUB! LOL


  3. thefreeak says

    Personally, I’m getting a little sick and tired of this ‘flick the switch’ style the Pies have adopted this year. I know it’s good to have a contest for most of the game, and maybe someone down at AFL HQ had a word in their ear after the first few rounds, but I’m on pills for me nerves. They’re expensive. And I don’t need to be chewing on them like Tic Tacs unnecessarily for three quarters on a weekly basis thank you very much.

  4. Steve Fahey says

    The answer is Glenn “Galaxy” Coleman, who played at Fitzroy, Sydney and Footscray.

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