Orange flags the way to a draw

This was my ninth day off school for the term, sure I was feeling better but I just wasn’t up to going to school. I was quite behind in my work though, as you would think, and I answered a call from my Maths teacher at midday and she worked me through a process on the computer to get some online tutoring. Everything seems to be online these days. I remember on school camp to the Northern Territory last year we went to the School of Air, where the kids live in the actual outback, too far from a town with a school, so they do all their schooling for the year via a webcam link on the computer. Interesting.

After I got off the phone to my Maths teacher, I went into Numurkah with Mum to have some x-rays on my chest and hip. I feared I had a broken rib(s) because I was in intense pain in my side whenever I did anything, it made sleeping a nightmare and I couldn’t even laugh without also groaning in pain.

Arriving at the hospital, Mum and I waited about 15 minutes in the waiting room before I was called into the room. I took my jumper and shirt off and was ordered to press myself up against the machine. That machine was damn cold. It was all done in five minutes though, and I got to see my results straight away. I’m no expert on reading x-rays so I’ll leave that to my doctor, who I had to see straight after the x-ray. He said I most likely had a case of pleurisy instead of a broken rib, while my pneumonia had already been diagnosed. Another new problem that had risen along with the pain in my hip was a weird, throbbing, tingling feeling in both of my arms everytime I extended the limb, whether to grab something off the table or something like that. He said it was a case of neuritis, where the nerves in the arms flare up. I hate doctor words like pleurisy and neuritis, they just look ugly.

Back at home, I waited for 8:30 to come. Before the game, I told fellow Almanacker Susie Giese that I thought Hawthorn would win due to the Buddy factor. I was really looking forward to the game.

But, for some reason I decided to do some homework at the last minute, starting with some theory work on magnets for Science as the umpire put the ball into the turf. I looked up to see Justin Koschitzke take an uncontested mark, kicking the goal before taking yet another uncontested mark and then putting through his second. Jarryd Roughead got his first from the next centre clearance, then Michael Osborne kicked the ball out of mid-air in the goalsquare to draw scores level. Koschitzke took a good mark and kicked his third, he was impressing early, but Buddy marked uncontested at the 50m line, playing on, evading an opponent and sinking a goal from the 50, making things even again. Nick Riewoldt marked and put the Saints back in front, and with Brendon Goddard in possession in defence with a couple of seconds on the clock, St Kilda were poised to go into the first break with the lead. Enter Cyril Rioli. He quickly dived in front of Goddard’s kick to mark, and put the Hawks in front after the siren.

The second quarter began and Clint Young benefited from some great vision by Rioli, ending the great play with a goal. Riewoldt goaled, and St Kilda were still yet to miss.

Last year in Round 12, Chris Judd ran into Steven Browne against St Kilda on Friday night football. Judd broke his nose quite badly, and the story of the night was his frequent trips to the interchange bench to be strapped up and to cough up an enormous amount of blood. That night, Zac Dawson kicked a late goal to seal the win.

Back to 2010, and Nick Dal Santo copped a bad knock to his nose in the first quarter, and the blood immediately came out of it. He made his way to the interchange bench to be taped up, and was still suffering from the bloody nose as Dawson benefited from a 100m penalty against Franklin, kicking the goal to give the Saints the lead. Some things just work out that way. Buddy got back into Al Clarkson’s good books though, kicking a long goal from a free kick, before Stephen Milne beat Rioli in a one-on-one before snapping his first, and St Kilda led by one point at half time, 7.0 to 6.5.

Last week against Brisbane, the Hawks smashed them. Brutally smashed them. The Lions kicked 7.1, and that behind was rushed. Just a coincidence that the Saints were yet to miss going into the third quarter. Brendan Whitecross put Hawthorn back in front, before Franklin marked uncontested on the goal-line after a quick Luke Hodge clearance. Just as I noted that Adam Schneider had been very quiet, he marked and kicked a long goal after Koschitzke missed out on a chance to boot his fourth after the St Kilda runner ran through the mark. I bet he found out if Ross Lyon could give a decent spray. Franklin got onto the end of a searing Rioli pass, again marking uncontested, and he booted his fourth but it was Schneider who received the handball and kicked his second on the run, cutting the Hawks’ lead to four points. Jack Steven got a handball at close quarters from Riewoldt and snapped a clever goal, St Kilda back in the lead, before Schneider snagged his third from 50m out. It took a good mark from Roughead in the goalsquare to bring scores back level at the final break, 11.1 to 10.7.

Osborne rammed through a goal from the goalsquare as the siren was still sounding, it was that quick out of the middle. Franklin stretched the lead after Leigh Montagna sneaked into ‘Buddy’s Arc’ while the champ was having a shot, Franklin marched 50m to the goalsquare and put through his fifth, but St Kilda replied through Stephen Milne, goaling from 40m out and then kicking a Paul Chapman-esque snap after receiving from Schneider at the top of the goalsquare. The margin was back to a point. Roughead marked, 50m out. The goalkicking demons would have been propped up on both of his shoulders, having a quiet word into his ears as he lined up the shot. Those demons quietly disappeared into nothing as Roughead landed the goal, much to his delight, celebrating in fine style. The game looked finished. Hawks by seven points. Rioli with the ball, lining up for goal. ‘Delicious’ couldn’t miss. As he came to the end of his run-up, he glanced over to the interchange bench, before quickly kicking the ball through the big sticks, not bad when your mind would have been focusing on that orange flag the umpire was holding out on the interchange bench. Hawthorn had infringed on the interchange rule. Rioli’s kick didn’t stand, St Kilda had the free kick and all of a sudden Riewoldt marked on the lead and had the chance to cut the deficit to a point. He missed, and it was a goal the difference. The Saints needed a hero, the Hawks needed a warrior. St Kilda won the ball forward with under 30 seconds to go. Milne couldn’t mark, and a stoppage was forced with 15 seconds to go, 15m out from goal.

Some weird things must go through some Ruckmen’s heads. Some are just big and dopey (see Jason Laycock, Kepler Bradley, Chris Bryan) while some do have some athletic power. So what would have gone through Ben McEvoy’s mind as the ball was bounced, with St Kilda needing a goal? “Oh, that ball looks mighty easy to grab, I might just do that. Hmm, I got it now, might as well just put it through.”

And that’s what he did. And scores were level. And it stayed that way. Who would have thought that an orange flag could change the outcome of a match? This match deserved to be a draw though, what a game of football.

St Kilda 4.0—7.0—11.1—14.3.87

Hawthorn 4.1—6.5—10.7—13.9.87


St Kilda-Koschitzke 3, Schneider 3, Milne 3, Riewoldt 2, Steven, McEvoy, Dawson

Hawthorn-Franklin 5, Roughead 3, Osborne 2, Young, Whitecross, Rioli


St Kilda-Hayes, Goddard, Dal Santo, Gardiner, Schneider, Gram

Hawthorn-Hodge, Franklin, Sewell, Mitchell, Burgoyne, Roughead


49,373 at Etihad Stadium


3: Lenny Hayes (ST)

2: Luke Hodge (H)

1: Lance Franklin (H)

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. Steve Healy says

    Good stuff Josh

  2. Very good report Barney, one of your best. A Friday night that will be remembered, probably in infamy due to the interchange infringement.

    Think you’re a bit harsh on Kepler Bradley – he’s had a good year for the Dockers, and I’m sure that there are enough dopey ruckmen in the league without you having to list ex-players like Chris Bryan.

  3. Thanks Adam.

    Kep has had a good year, but just look at him, he just oozes dopeyness. Doesn’t play like it though.

    Simon Taylor? Andrew Browne? Michael Gardiner?

  4. Jake Spencer? Dawson Simpson? Tom Bellchambers?

  5. I think we need to start questioning Hawthorn’s mental toughness in close games. They have a habit of blowing it. What do your reckon Mr Kennett – mentally fragile perhaps?

  6. Clearsighted says

    Dips: we should all be questioning Buddy’s special ‘natural arc’ rule.

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