Round 11 – Essendon v Carlton: An MCG Comedy



By Caspar McLeod.
Essendon v Carlton.
2/6/2019. Melbourne Cricket Ground.


It’s cold. It’s wet. And it’s a perfect day to sit in front of the TV, watching the footy.


Still need to hand in an assignment for my photojournalism class that’s worth 40 or so percent. Today is a big day for me and my Bombers.


Win, and we stay in the hunt.


Lose? Heaven forbid such a horrible thought.


First quarter. We lead at the end of it by a point. Both teams are awful going inside fifty. Both have wasted chances in front of goal. I don’t know how to feel about the game so far. Hooker and Hurley and Heppell are going really well. But so are Cripps and Kreuzer.


Second quarter. I love listening to Timmy Watson commentate this match. He groans when we chip the ball around slowly at the start of the match, and expresses his thought that Essendon needs to play with speed. It is now pouring with rain at the MCG. Surely speed plus rain would equal more skill errors?


Suddenly, we pick up speed and kick two goals in the space of two minutes. Well, I know nothing about wet-weather footy. Clearly. Laverde finally finds the middle of the goals, funnily enough by kicking a drop punt from where most others would kick a banana. Hmmm. Maybe the banana is dead? Long live the banana. We lead by three goals at half time after keeping Carlton goalless.


Third quarter. It is a real challenge trying to tell whether or not the game is being played in India during the monsoon or at the bottom of Niagara Falls. We kick the first through Tippa. This should mean we have now won this game. Charlie Curnow ends our four goal streak. Laverde kicks another after a Carlton defender confused this game of footy for a diving contest and goes for a perfect 10/10 dive. It was perfect, for me at least, as it extends our lead to 22. A comedy of errors at the MCG results in Curnow out marking Hurley and kicking true. Tippa extends our lead again. The commentators read out that Tippa has kicked 28 goals from his last 30 scoring shots. Wow. Zaharakis turns the ball over, resulting in a scoring shot to Carlton, which results in a behind. Typical wet-weather game. We lead by 21 at 3 quarter time.

I hand in my assignment for photojournalism. I breathe a sigh of relief. My fate now rests with the Gods of Good Grades.


The final term begins. The comedy continues. Tippa continues to inspire. His is a legend, a god, a hero of football. He is beautiful to watch when in flight. This game is painful to watch otherwise. A Carlton player spills the ball and soccers it straight towards the boundary line. A sure free kick. Except Andy McGrath tries to keep it alive, and soccers it himself… straight back to Carlton, who sends it over the boundary line for a throw in, fifty meters down the field. UGH. Thankfully, we kick another goal through Parish that makes me feel better. He then contributes to a turn over inside Carlton’s forward fifty. That makes me feel a little worse. Mark Baguley brings back the good feelings by converting a free kick. Siren sounds with us in front. This makes me feel awesome. I always feel happy when we win, regardless of by how much.


The comedy ends with the red and black parade raining all over Brendan and his men. Who said Essendon were finished? Not yet! Not by a long way.


ESSENDON   2.3   5.4   8.5   11.8 (74)
CARLTON     2.2   2.4   4.8   4.9 (33)


 McDonald-Tipungwuti 3, Laverde 2, Parish 2, Baguley 2, Heppell, Langford
Carlton: C.Curnow 2, Kreuzer, McKay


Heppell, Parish, Hurley, Guelfi, Clarke, McGrath
Carlton: Kreuzer, Walsh, Dow, Newman, Cuningham


Carlton: Nil


Reports: Nil

Umpires: Power, Stevic, Mollison

Official crowd: 50,423 at the MCG



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About Caspar McLeod

Third Culture Kid at Heart. Grew up in Asia, discovered footy at age 9. AFL has since been my burning passion. Ask me who were the winners all the grand finals between 1938 and last year's decider, and I'll be happy to tell you. I'm a footy nut with a passion for writing and acting. All though I love writing and acting, during the footy season, AFL is my true passion. Waiting ever so patiently for the day when Essendon Next win the flag.


  1. Rod Oaten says

    As if sitting in the cold and wet isn’t enough, this game of football from a Tragic Don’s perspective, was absolute crap. I just wasted another three hours of my life.

  2. Colin Ritchie says

    Thank goodness for the win! A loss, especially to Carlton, would have been disastrous!
    Rod, hang in there, for us grumpy old men, there’s hope!

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