Round 1 Preview – Sydney v Collingwood: Switcheroo

Ah, the ol’ switcheroo. A wonderful trick. By definition, a switcheroo is a sudden unexpected variation or reversal that is often associated with a joke. It is colloquially used in reference to an act of intentionally or unintentionally swapping two objects. In this case, intentionally (and brilliantly) swapping the cavernous ANZ Stadium with the majestic Sydney Cricket Ground. I’m not sure that the Pies saw the humour in this instance, but I certainly did. And so, with the venue confirmed, footy returns to Sin City with a bang. Two modern-day rivals meeting at intriguing junctures in their respective journeys, makes for a contest not to be missed. Let’s take a closer look.


A Buddy-less Swans were fighting for a top-four spot, while the Enemy arrived in town looking to keep slim finals hopes alive. Goodesy returned to the SCG for a homecoming party that included 40,000 attendees, after being subjected to treatment that can only be described as heinous. I attended with a mate, and after some pre-game refreshments, we decided to place a wager on the first goal scorer. The voting proved unanimous – Heeney. When the young gun snatched a fine contested grab in the fourth minute and lined up for goal, we began to count our cash. We’ve placed many a wager together over the years, and this one unfortunately joined a long list of unsuccessful attempts at gaining instant wealth. Any lingering disappointment was erased through a gritty Bloods victory, although at the high cost of losing Luke Parker for the remainder of the year – another losing ticket.


Buddy v Frost

The TV series A Touch of Frost stars David Jason as Detective Inspector William Edward “Jack” Frost, an experienced and dedicated detective who frequently clashes with his superiors. In his cases, Frost is assisted by a variety of different detective sergeants, with each bringing a different slant to the particular case. Comic relief is provided by Frost’s interactions with the bureaucratically-minded Superintendent Norman “Horn-rimmed Harry” Mullett. Buddy looks fit, and most importantly, happy. Collingwood will need Jack Frost to prove like David Jason’s famous character, ably assisted by his colleagues to prevent any comedic value for Swannies supporters. Best of luck, Jack.

Pridham v McGuire

Following in the fine tradition established by former Swans’ president Richard Colless, our current boss is doing a fine job of sparring with Collingwood’s head honcho, Eddie McGuire. From COLA, to trading bans, to Academies and the recent ol’ switcheroo, the pair have been in constant dialogue. While leading the charge for any reasonable equalisation measure to be scrapped (unless benefiting the black & white), appears to be McGuire’s modus operandi, the Swannies will feel that with the ol’ switcheroo, they’ve ‘got one back’, but there’s much ground to make up in this battle. There is bad blood and Pridham is fighting the good fight!


September 7, 1918 – MCG. Grand Final.

After starting the season in sensational fashion including a big win over the Pies in Round 3, the Bloods had firmed into premiership favouritism, and featured in a Round 4 King’s birthday blockbuster against the Saints. The preceding two days of the long weekend were spent in the Dandenongs, enjoying the hospitality of a club patron. According to champion rover Mark Tandy, the fact that the team saw the match out was a miracle, as players were ‘wobbling at the knees’ and needing a ‘shove-off in the direction of the arena gates’ just to make it on the ground. Not surprisingly, the red and whites went down in this one (their only loss of the season), but would prove to be the eventual premier defeating the Pies by five points in a thriller. The winning goal was kicked off the ground, in the final minute of play by South forward pocket Chris Laird, and party time hit the Lake Oval.


The Swans have recently been criticised for an apparent lack of depth among their playing stocks. What hasn’t been considered in the conversation however, is the fact that the club were slapped with a two-year trading ban that to this day has never been explained by those at city hall. This ban received little to no coverage at the time of being introduced. It is no coincidence that the majority of the football media exercised their right to remain silent on this issue, as much of the mainstream media throng has strong professional or personal connections to certain club administrators or AFL commissioners. Pridham described the ban as ‘the senseless sanction.’ It’s impact will be felt. To what degree is the question that Swans supporters will be asking themselves.

Collingwood’s current off-field dilemma has certainly caught the headlines. A quarter of the club’s playing list have recorded positive tests to illicit drugs through the recent addition of hair testing. I’m sure there’s more to play out in this story, but unless they’ve all been sharing some type of Colombian styling wax, they’ve taken no notice of the two-year bans endured by two of their former teammates. Hmmmm.


Three Swans debutants – Marvellous Mills, Gorgeous George & Papley the Plumber. Three very different stories and all terrific selections. Callum Mills has been highly regarded by all at the club for a while now. His poise and smooth movement impressed over the off-season and the red and white faithful can look forward to many years of enjoyment here. George Hewett is entering his third year on the senior list, but was drafted as a promising seventeen year old from North Adelaide. Always considered as a player with much potential, he made the NEAFL Team of the Year in 2015, and his ball use is just what the Swannies need this season. Tom Papley is the grandson of two former Bloods, left a plumbing apprenticeship to come to Sydney, and has made his way from the rookie-list to round one with a rocket. Dynamic and dogged, he will provide pressure around goals and hopefully bag a few along the way. Welcome aboard to all three and go well.


The Bloods will prevail, of course. Twenty-two point victors with fresh new talent unearthed. Cheer, cheer.


About Joe Moore

Learned the art of the drop-punt from Derek Kickett as Jamie Lawson watched on. And thus, a Swan for life. @joedmoore1979


  1. Mathilde de Hauteclocque says

    Delightfully off target with that margin Joe!
    Cheer cheer.

  2. Phillip Dimitriadis says

    Congrats to your boys Joe. The margin could easily have been 122 points. A professional and ruthless performance and great to see Buddy back after battling depression. Inspirational stuff. I hope my Pies can learn a few things from your Swannies i.e “No Dickheads Policy”.

  3. Joe Moore says

    And extremely happy that I was Mathilde!! What a pleasant evening…

    They played very well Phil. I’m sure your boys will improve on that effort though.

  4. jan courtin says

    Liked your preview Joe. And the reference to the 1918 Grand Final in which my great uncle captained the Bloods.
    A great start, and especially for the young boys. Bodes well for our future.
    Cheer cheer

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