NAB Cup, Round 2: It’s hard to find a score in the bathroom

It has been one of the worst days of my life. After hearing the bad news that I couldn’t make the trip down to Melbourne for a second consecutive week to the footy, I confide myself to listening and watching the game on the internet. As I log onto the computer to check the latest team news at midday, I find that Broadband isn’t working. I try it a few times and it still won’t connect. I give my sister a text, informing her of the problem, and soon enough she is trying to fix it for me. Still though, it does not work. I try and try and try, it’s like the internet has ganged up on me on the day I needed it most.

The bad thing about the NAB Cup, among many, is that footy matches aren’t the top priority for local radio stations, with cricket the choice of sport. So, with no internet and no radio to follow the game, what do I do? I wander around the house aimlessly, somehow thinking I’ll find out the score in the fridge, and then maybe it’s in the loungeroom, perhaps in the bathroom. But still, I’m on the outer of this game being played at Etihad Stadium.

My good friends Steve Healy and Damian Watson are attending this match, and I’d planned to call Steve at half time for a bit of an update. Although I put this off, choosing to call him at the end of the match, this seems like a reasonable choice. I then realised I can use my phone to get the scores of the match, although at the expense of 30c credit, and I was running quite low. “Screw it” I say to myself, and my first glimpse of the score flashes on my phone screen.

AFL Q1 23:31 R3 ES




NMFC: Harding 1

FRE: (SG) Ibbotson (G) Mayne

I then realised the sports news will be coming up soon on Channels Seven and Nine. They both come on at the same time, so I quickly switch between the two of them to see if I miss anything. All I see is Hayden Ballantyne setting up a goal to Chris Mayne and Brent Harvey capitalising on a Fremantle clanger in defence and snapping a goal. But no score update! After 40 minutes or so, I decide to check the score again.

AFL Q2 28:10 R3 ES




NMFC: Adams 1

FRE: (SG) Ibbotson (G) Mayne 2

My heart skips a beat at the update, and I contemplate ringing Steve as it seems it is nearing half time or must be at the main break. I decide not to, but after a while I ferociously try and find out the score again.

AFL Q3 14:44 R3 ES




NMFC: Adams 1

FRE: (SG) Ibbotson (G) Mayne 3

My mood lightens at this, and I decide to wait half an hour before checking again. That excruciating 30 minutes is up soon enough, and I predict the Roos have either fallen behind or surged ahead. It’s the former.

AFL Q4 6:04 R3 ES




NMFC: Hale 2

FRE: (SG) Ibbotson (G) Mayne 5

I start to think that the game is over. Freo have gotten out to a three goal lead. The old North Melbourne is kicking back in after last week’s spirited effort against Geelong. But I keep the updates coming.

AFL Q4 19:02 R3 ES




NMFC: Hale 3

FRE: (SG) Ibbotson (G) Mayne 5

“YES!” I shout to myself. But why? I’d rather my team fades out slowly than coming back into a nailbiting finish. The times between updates becomes shorter, like a pregnancy really with the contractions side of things.

AFL Q4 24:54 R3 ES




NMFC: Hale 3

FRE: (SG) Ibbotson (G) Mayne 5

I can’t believe it. Has the game ended? Is the final result a draw? Are they currently into extra-time?

AFL Q4 26:56 R3 ES




NMFC: Hale 3

FRE: (SG) Ibbotson (G) Mayne 5

This is killing me. The bad thing as that the updates don’t tell me if the match is finished, it just shows what the current quarter-minutes are. I check again, to see if the score is the magical 96-94 that I anticipate.

AFL Q4 27:49 R3 ES




NMFC: Hale 3

FRE: (SG) Ibbotson (G) Mayne 5

ARGH!! I quickly check again to see if any more time had elapsed, meaning the match was still on.

AFL Q4 27:49 R3 ES




NMFC: Hale 3

FRE: (SG) Ibbotson (G) Mayne 5

The game had finished. Fremantle had won. I’d gotten ahead of myself, all week I had been predicting the Roos to easily run over the top of Freo, but like the West Coast v Port Adelaide game suggests, nothing is certain in the NAB Cup. I give Steve a quick ring but my ears are confronted with one of the worst voicemail messages ever. Change it Healy! But I learnt two things from today’s match: NAB Cup games are useless to follow in the country, and Steve and Damo saw one hell of a match.

About Josh Barnstable

21 year old North Melbourne supporter from country Victoria. Currently living in Melbourne studying a Bachelor of Sports Media. Dreams of becoming a sports journalist and broadcaster.


  1. Danielle says

    nawwww poor joshy
    i tried to watch it on Foxsports…until mum got her way..
    “if u think im watching this ur dreaming” she said.

    like a pregnancy eyy?
    not sure u can compare tsuff to that, ask ur wife in few years

  2. Pregnancy is overrated. And i meant the time between score updates were getting shorter and shorter, like contractions when the baby is due.

  3. Danielle says

    2- contractions UNHUMANLPAINFUL (ive been told) score update can hurt, but not as much LMAOO

  4. It hurts as much for me when my team is tied with Freo in the dying minutes!

  5. Steve Healy says

    Sorry Josh, I set that voicemail when I got my phone and I cant figure out how to change it back. There’s something wrong with my phone, I never seem to hear ringing even when its on full volume

  6. “like a pregnancy really”
    LOL, you’re as bad as Harry Taylor. Last year he injured his groin and said it was “just like giving birth”. His girlfriend is pregnant at the moment, so I’d love to hear what she has to say to him after her labour.

    Steve – you wouldn’t happen to have a Motorola, would you?

  7. Danielle says

    6- lmaoo and theres my backup.
    Hey Susie! :)

  8. Steve Healy says

    Yeah i remember when Taylor said that, hahaha.

    No, a crap nokia

  9. I’ve got a Sony Ericsson, had it since early last year so i think i’m due for a change.

    I knew that pregnancy line would cause a bit of discussion.

  10. Susie – You know what my mum said the other day? “I laugh whenever I see a guy get whacked in the nuts, it feels like retribution because they don’t have to give birth.” This was after a French skier had accidentally had one leg go either side of the gate in the downhill. You can imagine what happened next.

    Not exactly the smoothest simile in the world Josh, but it was entertaining.

  11. Hey Danni! :D
    Happy to help ;)

  12. Hahaha, Josh. Keep this up and your articles will certainly be memorable.

    Adam – I like the sound of your mum. But I still don’t think it’s a proportionate pain, LoL.

  13. Danielle says

    my mum was telling me off the other day saying that after I get married my husband gets to chose the name for our kids, and so I now I have a saying
    “I went through the pain so I pick the name”
    Like it?
    Jack-Anthony and Andre-Federer is it!
    ( i want 2 boys and a girl)

  14. 12: Mum said after reading this report, that my articles have gone down in quality but i’m being more funny.

  15. Steve Healy says

    I think it is, at its worst a hit there is worse than pregnancy

  16. A proper hit to the knackers is one of the worst things about being a boy.

  17. 13: At the very least, the girl deserves veto power

    14: Lower quality may mean you miss out on awards, but funnier means more people talk about you and quote you in the general public

  18. I wholehartedly agree with Mitch Farmer, although they are different – pregnancy starts slowly and builds up to a climax, apparently, while for being hit in the groin, the climax is pretty much instant.

    Anyone heard the story of Peter Clough? He was a Tasmanian cricketer.

  19. Steve Healy says

    knackers? hahaha nice one.

    I reckon its the only bad thing.

  20. Steve, don’t make me go all gross and graphic on this one – just trust me, LoL. Giving birth would be way worse.

  21. That’s what we call them in the country, and no it has nothing to do with Almanackers.

  22. 20: Doubt it.

  23. Danielle says

    20- a agree, no need to go back to year 8 health class…

  24. Steve Healy says

    Have you had birth? Has Danni had birth? No, unless there’s some sort of secret.

    Me, Josh, Adam and Damo etc. have been hit there numerous times throughout our lives, well I can only speak for myself I guess.

  25. 23: We never learnt anything about pregnancy! Apparantly their is a video you get to watch, but i never saw it. Not that i want to..

  26. Danielle says

    22- JOSH….how can i say this…
    somethings gotta come out of ya when u give birth!!!

  27. 24: Definitely had my fair share Steve.

  28. The Story of Peter Clough: Part 1 of 2

    Peter Clough was a Tasmanian bowler, in the 70s or 80s. One day, he came in as nightwatchman against the two fastest bowlers in the world, Jeff Thomson and Carl Rackemann.

    During his short stint out at the wicket, he got repeatedly battered by the two bowlers. In the shoulder, on the helmet, on the hip, on the chest…seemingly everywhere except the area commentators fondly refer to as “the groin”.

    Mercifully for Clough, the day finally ended with him and his partner still out in the middle. He went to the dressing room, took off his pads, his helmet and reached down inside his pants to remove his protector…at which point he immediately went white. It wasn’t there!

    The whole dressing room erupted in laughter as they saw Clough’s shock at the realisation he’d been facing the two fastest bowlers in the world without a “frog”.

  29. 22: Getting hit in the nackers – it hurts because all the nerves are right there on the surface, no bone or muscle to protect (this is the only thing I remember from Grade 6 Sex ed :-p)
    Giving birth – girls likewise have all their nerves on the surface, but add on to that trying to squeeze something the size of a watermelon out of an opening the size of an apricot.
    There. I didn’t want to be disgusting, but your ignorance appalls me, LoL :P

  30. Danielle says

    hey just cos i havent had Andre-federer of Jack-Anthony Jr Yet doesnt mean i havent heard my fair share of stories!! i feel bad for my mother i was a 24hour contraction baby, mum said it was hell

  31. Danielle says

    29- There we go!

  32. Steve Healy says

    28- lol, are you serious.

    Here’s the difference- girls love being pregnant, they think it’s exciting and look forward to it etc.

    Do boys look forward to getting hit down stairs? NO!

  33. 30: My friend’s sister was in labour for over 40 hours. That effectively put me off having kids EVER, LoL.

  34. Danielle says

    32- yeah they are all happy when they throw up all morning and night and scream
    while they are going through hell.

  35. 29: Lol, i don’t know why but i find it so funny looking at the reactions girls get when i say pregnancy is nothing etc.

    I know how painful it is (well, not really) and i’m glad i’m not a girl because i’d be so scared of getting pregnant, but with guys you could be hit in the knackers at any time, while the girls only go through this pain once or twice, or in Steve’s mums case, eight times in their life.

  36. Danielle says

    33- omgg thats baddddddddddd.
    the pain is a big factor…A REALLY BIG FACTOR but i still want Andre-Federer and Jack-Anthony Jr.

  37. The Story of Peter Clough: Part 2 of 2

    Peter Clough stepped back out into the middle the next day for Tasmania against Queensland, timidly, nervously checking inside his pants to make sure his protector was still there.

    The first ball from Jeff Thomson hit him square in the groin, and his protector snapped in two!

  38. 32: We aren’t arguing what people look forward to, we’re arguing what hurts more, LoL. And for that matter, some girls may look forward to pregnancy and motherhood, but NO ONE looks forward to contractions or birth.

  39. 28: Well steve, it’s not like the joy of your life is going to pop out of you when you get hit in the nuts..

  40. Getting hit in the Knackerroos hurts a fruit load it lingers for a minute or two too.

  41. Steve Healy says

    Well, usually becoming pregnant is their own decision

  42. Damian Watson says

    Yep I know the feeling when your hit in that region out on the cricket field, it’s happened afew times actually lol the cricketing Gods don’t like me.

    10- Is this the skier you are referring to Adam: listen to the commentary it is hilarious.

  43. 37: Far out! Guy goes from being lucky to realising just how lucky he was, LoL.

  44. Rememeber Sean Wellman getting kneed in the knackers in a match in 2003? That made me go white.

  45. Yep Damo, it’s that one!

  46. Steve Healy says

    35- exactly

  47. Lol funny story Adam, i’ll ask if my Dad has heard of that.

  48. Steve Healy says

    Its the only thing worse that being kneed in the back of the head

  49. 42: Ouch! Haha its funny how you can hear me yell in pain. Imagine if Bruce McAvaney was commentating:

    “Oh Dennis, that was..Delicious!

  50. 42: Far out! That was nasty! :-S

  51. 49: Woops, i meant how you can hear *him yell in pain.

  52. Steve Healy says

    Yeah I was gonna say

  53. Damian Watson says

    Yep the ‘boys certainly took a beating on that one’. Yeah it would be funny to imagine Bruce calling that, I think he has been a commentator in a past Winter Olympics.

    I found another funny clip but I probably shouldn’t, that last one was painful enough.

  54. Steve Healy says

    Did anyone see when Naitanui was being interviewed after West Coast V Essendon and he was clearly handling his groin region?

  55. Damian Watson says

    Yeah I saw that interview, it rivals the performance Fev made last year during an interview.

  56. Steve Healy says

    Hahaha yeah I remember the Fev one

  57. 57: What can i say? He was just excited to play North Melbourne ;)

  58. Damian Watson says

    Yeah I’ve seen that before.

    Okay this video proves that winning a pole vault gold medal comes with sacrifices:

    By the way did anyone hear about Fev posting photos of lara Bingle to a magazine which was taken during their affair?

  59. 59: Nope

    I’m trying to find footage of that Sean Wellman incident

  60. Steve Healy says

    Damo, what was that expression I was using at the footy yesterday?

  61. Damian Watson says

    They’re getting back into the ‘scheme of things’.

  62. Damian Watson says

    I reckon you used that at least 5 times lol. that can be your trademark catch phrase.

  63. Steve Healy says

    thanks, lol, I forgot it

  64. So did anything of note happen yesterday? Did you see any Kangaroos players sitting the crowd like we did last week? Any funny moments like Michael’s slip-up? Lol

  65. Steve Healy says

    Michael Johnson came up to is and we patted him on the back after the game, and on the train home I was resting my soft footy on my feet and it slipped out and went a few rows behind us lol

  66. Damian Watson says

    Then of course there was the rain that came pelting between the open roof, everyone behind us looked for shelter while Steve and I opted to slug it out.

  67. Who were you referring to when you said that Steve?

    67: Told you the roof should’ve been shut! Well i told Steve..I would never deviate from a footy match if rain starting falling.

  68. Danielle says

    omg josh i just noticed that i missed Greg! lmaoo damn it

  69. 69: I broke his six-pen today..he wasn’t happy.

    I’m about to send this video of the two girls fighting..

  70. Actually, maybe i shouldn’t send it..

  71. Danielle says

    ..werd Adam go?

  72. Probably working on his Oral.

    Hmm, just thinking, if the NAB Cup Grand Final is played in Melbourne, i might see if i can go to that

  73. Steve Healy says

    yeah maybe Josh, or you could come to Bulldogs v Port with us this friday.

    i just had 6 bits of toast, im still really hungry

  74. I made pizza scrolls in food today. Delicious.

    Hmm no i don’t think so Steve, but if i say that i would be attending a Grand Final, it may be a valid point for me going.

  75. Steve Healy says

    yeah, but it shouldnt matter what game you go to. Every footy game’s good

  76. Yeah but if i say I’m going to see Western Bulldogs v Port Adelaide, already my chances of going are slim.

  77. Steve Healy says

    just say “im going to the footy” lol.

    anyway believe it or not ive gotta do homework so cya

  78. Steve Healy says

    finished my homework, yay

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