Round 10 – Richmond v Essendon: Dreamtime Game at the MCG

    Dreamtime Game at the MCG
Richmond v Essendon



This was probably the worst game of football I have seen, since I umpired a primary school game between Dandenong South P/S and Dandenong P/S back in the late 1960’s


Like the aforementioned game, this game of “football” more closely reminded me of cross-country wrestling.  Packs of players scrambled for the footy with the occasional kick into the sky, which landed in the middle of another scramble pack.


For the first two quarters, this game was played on Richmond’s half-forward line.

When they could, the be -leagued Essendon defenders kicked the ball vaguely in the Essendon direction but it came straight back again. I’m not sure who were defenders and who were forwards on either side, because like primary school footy, everybody was within a metre or so of the ball.


The goal umpires weren’t called in to make many decisions, except for a few behinds. Richmond kicked one goal by quarter time and four by half time, the Dons kicked a total of one by half time. And if the game lacked much of a spectacle the weather was to put it politely, rubbish, rain and wind.


After half time Richmond showed they were a better unit than Essendon and added four goals whilst the Dons managed just one. Both teams missed very gettable chances which didn’t endear them to the crowd. I hardly heard a real roar, I think most people like me were wishing they were home in front of a heater.


The last quarter commenced with more of the same, Richmond were coasting when all of a sudden Essendon kicked a goal. This must have thrown a switch among them because they kicked another and then two more. The Essendon crowd managed to find their voices, there was noise. There was still plenty of time left in the game but when Patrick Ambrose had a chance to nail another and bring the difference down to less than two goals, but his miss seemed to take the steam out of Essendon.


Richmond too good in pretty awful conditions, they have been too good for the Dons over the last few years. The pre-season hype that surrounded Essendon has evaporated at a rapid rate, just as well this tragic Don didn’t believe it!!!!!!


RICHMOND:   1.2   4.7   8.11   10.13 (73)
ESSENDON:   0.3   1.7   2.10   6.14 (50)


Richmond: Lynch 2, Castagna 2, Higgins 2, Baker, Prestia, Bolton, Rioli
Essendon: Langford 3, Begley, Laverde, Bellchambers

Houli, Martin, Edwards, Baker, Prestia, Vlastuin
Essendon: Parish, Heppell, Bellchambers, Shiel


Richmond: Lynch (calf)
Essendon: Jake Stringer (hamstring), Shiel (hamstring)


Reports: Nil


Umpires: Donlon, Foot, Meredith


Official crowd: 80,176 at the MCG


Votes: Houli   3 (Richmond),  Martin  2 (Richmond),  Parish 1 (Essendon)


Rod Oaten



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  1. Colin Ritchie says

    I don’t know what it is about the Bombers; when they play well they are unbeatable, when they play poorly, they are abysmal! They just can’t seem to get the mix right. I thought they looked very slow and lumbering on Saturday night. The second stringers that I thought would take the game on by the throat when given the opportunity just can’t grab it. Laverde, Francis in particular, they should have bright futures but for whatever reason struggle. I think I’m being a grumpy old man after expecting so much from the Bombers for this season.

  2. It was a shocking game Rod . I turned off the TV and went to bed. What happened to skill in the wet? As for the boring boundary line tactics . Pure rubbish. I went to the Bombers – Swans game in Sydney in round 8 and the skill level was awful. Worst game I’ve been to . Here’s hoping for an improvement !

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