Round 10 – Carlton v Collingwood: Looking good (Floreat Pica Society)

Carlton v Collingwood
Sunday, May 21st, 2023

by Paul McKay, Bangkok


Sir Doug Nicholls Round, with some magnificent indigenous footy jumpers, traditional pre-game celebrations, the Pies are in great form and we find ourselves facing our old enemy. The team that gave Collingwood supporters much grief in years past, especially in 1979 and 81. Today the respective number 30s are playing on each other. 35 is on 35 and even 3 on 3. I’m wondering if there is some kind of numerology going on here. Cripps on DeGoey also promises to be a great contest, although they’ll probably play wide of each other.

The Blues get first possessions with the ball moving toward the members wing, Silvagni makes an unrealistic attempt, sitting on a pack, but failing to bring the ball down with him. Steele is busy – plenty of creative involvement early in the game. Mitchell also involved early and we are generally hitting targets cleanly. Ball moves inside 50 and Bobby Hill slips out the back of the pack for a major. Next it’s McKay (no relation) who takes a pack mark and kicks truly. He is impressed with his own work.

DeGoey spins out of three tackles and finds the master Pendles. Mason Cox takes a towering mark on the back line. Checkers takes a one on two (he seems to do well in the air whenever he has two opponents to contend with) right in the middle of the ground. The marks are sticking and the Pies are looking good. McCreery kicks a goal from close in, not counted, since he has decked his opponent before the kick. A huge contest by the two 30s, surely a free to our skipper, but not to be. He takes the first of many trademark intercept marks only a minute later. A superb J Daicos tackle on Owies and it’s minor melee time, and as a result, Josh spends a few minutes with a serious wardrobe malfunction.

Ash Johnson goals thanks to a smooth, laid back Pendlebury entry and we have a 5 point lead. WHE gets held without the ball, gets a 50m penalty, another goal, 11 point lead. Super sharp ball movement involving Pendles, DeGoey and WHE and the ball zips in, laces out onto the chest of Checkers. He sports a wide grin after he goals. 24 plays 7 and Vossy is vigorously wiping his brow. Pies take possession at the next bounce, the beauty of Daicos to Daicos and we are moving forward again. Pendles lays on a critical tackle within range, but misses to the left. Our Bruzza is on the very end of a long Curnow kick and saves the day. Noble nicely upsets a Cripps forward move and bamboozles two Blues to take possession at Half Back. Sheets of applause wash across the G. Pendles is in everything, cutting off a ball at our 50m line, delivering inside, and Jack Crisp makes a fine rugby move, evading Saad & Crisp to kick a grubber. Another GOAL, and we are out to a 23 point lead. Noble coughs one up, and yet makes up for it soon after with a great smother. Crisp delivers to Jamie Elliott at half forward, but he is quickly surrounded by four Blue indigenous jumpers. It will be interesting to see if Jamie can regain confidence after a shaky few weeks. McKay goes off for blood rule, returns with a Carl Ditterich style white top.

Moore another intercept, and I can hear clearly audible oohs and aahs as the Pies move the ball. McCreery all on his own in the J Elliott pocket, but he is ignored – the ball is switched and it’s in IQ’s hands, all on his own, 45m out on the run. His shot goes wide. Back to the back line.

The QT bell goes and 32 play 8. My mind goes to 2022, where we had a few games where we played Q1 and 4, and took a long break during Q2&3. Hoping that won’t be the case today. The Fox cameramen spot Anthony Pratt & Greg Williams in the stands, neither looking very confident. Pendles and Sidey, our two elder statesmen, have 12 and 11 touches at QT, and fine touches they have all been. It’s a cold, crisp day in Melbourne according to BT, and our coaching team are sporting the trademark puffer jackets.

Q2 is under way. Another surge from DeGoey and we are quickly driving into our forward 50. Minor score. Back at the Carlton end and Carl Ditterich is having a shot on goal, but misses. A superb Pies forward thrust involving Bruz, Pendles, and the ball is there for Ash J to swallow, but McGovern finds a way to spoil him. Sidey waits patiently for the big Texan to move into place, then finds him. Mason goes for around the body, misses. Sidey is trying more party tricks on the wing, and the black & white faithful are all enjoying it immensely.

Darcy Moore, another intercept mark, this time on the wing, delivers to DeGoey, super sharp delivery to McCreery, whose kick at goal fades left, giving Ash Johnson a potential MOTY entry, with a horizontal hanger. He lands on his back, grimaces a few times, then slots the easy goal, and we are out to a 31 point lead. Charlie Curnow gets a soft free kick and goals from the 50m arc. Jamie Elliott puts a desperate tackle on Sam Walsh inside 50m, and gets the free. From dead in front he wanders right, but kicks to the left for a minor score. Very soon he more than makes up for this lost opportunity, in superb fashion, intercepting a Silvagni pass on the wing to create a chain of forward movement, finding Mitchell on his own, who then finds JDaicos on his own. A generous late bump from Jordan Boyd gifts him a 50m penalty. Another goal and the commentators are gushing over our work rate which is simply phenomenal. The writer is gushing over the pleasure of writing this report, yet at the same time, dreading the task of distributing Horsburgh votes.

That man, DeGoey races out of the centre again and finds Sidey, he canters into the 50m zone and Checkers tries to mark from behind. No cigar. Rebound. Mitchell starts an intercept on half back. A wave of black & white sees the ball in NDaic’s skilful hands, and a sublime left foot pass finds Elliott. Set Shot from 40m, GOAL. Great for his confidence. 53 plays 15. More deserved gush from the commentators.

At this moment, the camera pans to a very dejected pocket of Carlton fans. Slouching, motionless, and emotionless. Like a sailing ship stuck in the middle of the Atlantic with no wind, going nowhere, this is a classic definition of the Doldrums.

The next passage of play is poetic. Starting with a double fisted punch from Darcy, the ball lands in McCreery’s hands, and he’s running hard. He finds Bobby, gets it back from him, then finds DeGoey, who delivers to a salivating Checkers 20m out dead in front. GOAL. We have a 44 point lead. Still 8 mins to half time and there is a hint of the Collingwood chant. Charlie Curnow gets another gift. All his goals will be gifts today. Pies lead by 38.

Another forward Carlton move, another Darcy Moore intercept. Solid, skipper, solid.

Charlie Curnow is given another free kick on the 50m arc, which NDaicos duly ignores, runs away and gives away 50m. Gift goal. Another forward Carlton push and Owies gets a lucky bounce at the back of the pack, check-side dribble goal and the Blues have the rare claim of two in a row. Commentators are sniffing (hoping for…) a Carlton comeback, Charlie Curnow is way down on the wing, kicks forward and IQ takes a relieving mark on half back. This time McKay finds himself on the wing, Ed gives to brother Charlie for a running goal, luckily he misses.

This spell of hope for the Blues is quickly and comprehensively quashed by the next dramatic scene, which is the Bobby Hill show. We are about to see something that may well rival the legendary individual exploits of Phil Manassa and Mick McGuane run. Setting it all up with a chip kick off half back to Darcy Cameron, who duly taps the ball back to Bobby at full speed. Two pursuing Carlton defenders wisely decide to peel off… they have no chance of catching this kid. Bobby then teases Saad into thinking that he would be making a short pass. Saad realises his error while in mid-air, the candy is duly sold (Manassa and McGuane both did same), and he has the time & space to find the leading Checkers. Mark. GOAL. We are witnessing Champagne football. Bobby bobs up again, this time deep in defence, running hard & spoiling on the goal line. McCreery with another hard running effort sees him with two possessions just before the half time bell. A lot of talk about our two Darcys at half time, the brave intercepts of Moore and the rucking efforts of Cameron.

Half time diversion; One of the images of our famous Round 23 win last year was Sam Walsh with head in hands after the final bell. I was wondering whether his presence today would make much of a difference. Not so much by half time.

Q3 starts and as we will see, the scoring starts to dry up. Darcy Moore takes intercept mark no.8. and kicks long & deep into the forward line. The galloping frame of Mason Cox takes the mark, but misses the goal. Cripps generously finds Maynard. Our pressure is still white hot and Carlton cannot get it out of their half back. Owies misses a sitter soon after BT names him the set shot specialist. Nothing going right for the old enemy. Charlie Curnow yet ANOTHER GIFT. Is there any record for a forward kicking ALL their goals from free kicks in one day? The two no. 30s chuckle to each other as they return to position. Acres, who could find no space, suddenly finds acres as a Jamie Elliott forward kick finds him easily. Murphy steps in with a relieving intercept, Cameron takes a huge mark in the centre, but the ball stays in the Carlton half forward line. Commentators seem to be pleading for a Carlton comeback and a contest. Cripps and Pendles have a go at each other. Ed Curnow kicks a point. Mitchell buries himself in a pack yet again, this time emerging with a free kick. Another blistering run from McCreery in the forward pocket, into the hands of Checkers, GOAL. The Two Daicos brothers are being niggled at. They niggle right back. Our coach is looking composed on the boundary line. Maynard goes after Charlie Curnow on the boundary line. A free to Murphy in the back pocket brings a brazenly noisy Pies cheer squad to its feet. Sidey bombs out from our back line, only to find Cerra within range, he misses. It’s now mid Q3 and crunch time. Blues feel an urgent need to DO SOMETHING and it’s getting hard, tough & desperate out there. A low-scoring arm wrestle. Sidey flies, almost doing a Jeremy Howe landing. Lucky not to come off second best. Ed Curnow gets caught by three hard tackling Pies. 12 seconds left in the quarter, its deep in our forward line. No score, Pies by 32 at 3QT. Some very minor biffo at 3QT and it’s all set for a big Q4. Darcy Moore, 14 intercepts at 3QT.

Q4; Quick point to Cottrell in the first minute. Another forward Blues push, Silvagni mark, and his kick is way off, only just sneaking in for a point. DeGoey still working hard around all contests, and Ginnivan is warming up on the bench. 5 mins into Q4 and our guys are full of running. Such a super fit team we have here, there is no sign of fatigue yet. The Collingwood fitness team are emerging as hot favourites for Horsburgh votes.

Sam Walsh somehow kicks it out of bounds and from the kick in, McCreery finds himself on the end of the return ball, kicks an easy goal. Enter J. Ginnivan.

The smother of the game by Maynard brings on loud noises of appreciation from the faithful. Another intercept mark from Darcy Moore. McKay goals from 50m. Ed Curnow brings the ball forward, another Moore intercept mark. Sam Docherty has another go forward, Murphy takes an easy mark, unattended. Blues are flat. Tackling efforts from Mitchell and Noble in this next bit of play really highlights our Q4 endeavour. Pendles finds space and takes a mark at 60m. He waits and waits. And then delivers the perfect laconic, lean-back Pendlebury kick on a golden platter to the big Texan. It is very interesting to see the replay of this. WHE gave a very subtle bump to Lewis Young, ensuring that he had no chance to get anywhere near Mason. Young turns around for a stern glance at WHE after Cox takes the mark. The set play was perfect. A training drill. All Pies are smiling, 35 points up. Mitchell, again getting under packs earns a free kick at the bounce. He is again, super tough and impressive. Owies gets a late goal. 3.35 minutes left on the clock. Cameras zoom in again to various blue pockets of Doldrums.

The clock runs down, Pies win by 28 points. Lingy corrals Ash & Bobby to talk us through their individual moments of brilliance, and next our Skipper & Sidey talk their way through another gutsy Pies win.

To the votes:

A very tough task, and looking at the stats, possessions are very evenly spread. Unlike previous weeks there are no 30-40 possession getters and not surprisingly, the Daicos brothers are at the top with 27 touches each. Those in the +20 possession club were the two Daics, DeGoey, Mitchell, Moore, Noble, Sidebottom, Pendles. Yet if we cast an eye on all those with less than 20, almost every player had their moments of solid contribution. The old cliche of “team effort” could not be more appropriate.

All stats aside, here are my votes;

3-Darcy Moore; Stood tall and at times impenetrable. A record for intercept marks.

2-Jordan DeGoey; I just love the bullocking work that this guy is now consistently giving each week. His fitness is clearly at a high level and he puts in four solid quarters.

1-I cannot separate our two elder statesmen, Pendles and Sidey, so I give them half a vote each. They were both involved in contests all day, both super slick with hands and feet, and are starting to give us the impression that they have several more years to go.

A thoroughly enjoyable day of footy. Loved watching the game, and it was bewdy to be writing up. Special mention to the Floreat Pica sign, clearly seen as the team went down the race.

We have a chance to rest a few players who might need it over the next two weeks. We are up against North and the Weagles, both of whom are clearly struggling. Then a big one against the Dees on the Monday holiday.

Go Pies!

Your Bangkok Correspondent.


CARLTON              1.2     4.6     5.10    7.15 (57)
5.2    10.5   11.6    13.7 (85)

Carlton: C.Curnow 3, McKay 2, Owies 2
Collingwood: Mihocek 4, Johnson 2, Cox, Crisp, Daicos, Elliott, Hill, Hoskin-Elliott, McCreery

Carlton: Nil
Collingwood: Nil

Collingwood: Darcy Cameron, replaced Jack Ginnivan in the selected side

Carlton: George Hewett (replaced Oliver Hollands at half- time)
Collingwood: Jack Ginnivan (replaced Ash Johnson in the fourth quarter)

Crowd: 80,354 at the MCG


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