How to Watch Footy, part 9: Homegrounds and donuts

Homegrounds and donuts

Williamstown CYMS vs Old Geelong, Fearon Reserve, Williamstown., Round 5, Victorian Amateur Football Association, D1

Pre-match: The CYs clubrooms is the venue for a luncheon put on by the Williamstown Seagulls FIDA club, which has two teams in the Football Integration Development Association. The association is for players with an intellectual disability. Amongst others, I meet Peter Ryan, a former Williamstown player and Hawthorn recruiting officer, who co-founded FIDA 23 years ago. I catch glimpses of the Willi CYs reserves game (they got done), and also have my eye on the untouched pyramid of donuts iced in the club colours of blue and gold.

Main game: The seniors, like the visitors Old Geelong, are one and three. They’ve had two narrow losses, a win, and, last week, a ten goal thumping. As the FIDA luncheon winds up I quietly avail myself of a blue and gold donut and head into the rather warm May sunshine. It’s close to 25 degrees. Northerly breeze. Autumn’s having a late dash at being Summer.

Home ground: The Fearon has been the home-ground for the CYs since 1886.  In a way it’s my home ground too: I’ve been having a kick here every Sunday morning for heading towards a decade.

Distractions: The beach is just across the road.

First quarter: Old Geelong not surprisingly wear Geelong jumpers and after the Cats comprehensive win over the Bombers the night before I’m not sure I want to spend 120 minutes looking at more blue and white hoops. (I grew up in Geelong, where my kick-to-kick home ground was Elderslie Reserve, home of the red and black Newtown & Chilwell.) CYs are only a few points behind at the siren and their coach reckons the visitors haven’t done much with the four goal wind.

Second quarter: The blue and white hoops are getting the better of me. I’m having daytime nightmares of Stevie J instead of enjoying the sunshine and the CYs good form. I head to the beach for a dip in the clear cool water. From here I can hear the umpire’s whistle and the cheers of the CYs supporters. There’s one other swimmer, out in the deep, and some young families making sandcastles.

Half-time: I get back to the ground to see that the home team is nine points up. ‘Must have used the wind well. I’d like to stay but:

  1. I’m half-expecting visitors at home (See How to Watch Footy, part 8, becoming a grandparent).
  2. Much as I like footy there’s a limit to how much I can watch. (And I’ve already watched three-quarters of the Essendon-Geelong game on the telly on Friday night, some snippets of the CYs reserves game and one-and-a-half quarters of the CYs seniors.)
  3. I’ll be back here tomorrow for the Sunday morning kick.
  4. There are no more blue and gold donuts in the clubrooms.

Tuesday afternoon: The local paper tells me that CYs won by 41 points: 19.16 (130) to 14.5 (89).

I feel that I’ve dudded the CYs, that I should have stayed the distance. Maybe next time, especially if there are blue and gold donuts.

About Vin Maskell

Founder and editor of Stereo Stories, a partner site of The Footy Almanac. Likes a gentle kick of the footy on a Sunday morning, when his back's not playing up. Been known to take a more than keen interest in scoreboards - the older the better.


  1. Andrew Fithall says

    I have watched a bit of footy at this venue Vin (not as much as you that is certain) but I have never been tempted to go for a swim during the second quarter. Something to do with footy being a winter sport.

    Keep these coming. Very enjoyable.


  2. Thanks Andrew. The challenge will be to go for a swim in the second quarter in, say, July or August.

    Meanwhile, astute reader/s may have noticed I forgot to give my votes. I have wrested them from The Footy Almanac High Security Ballot Box: 3 votes to CYs seniors, 3 votes to May sunshine, 3 votes to Pekish caterers and their donuts.

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