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Round 13 – Sydney v Richmond: I Didn’t See It


I am livid.


Absolutely, dead-set furious. My Tiges have just beaten Sydney at their home ground, and I am grinding my teeth.


I wasn’t there. I didn’t see it, hear it or even watch a scrolling computer-generated commentary on I was too busy romping around the gardens of Da Vinci in Amboise, and missed the entire event.


Hey, don’t get me wrong, I’m floating about in the stratosphere after this win. When rushing into our restored farmhouse and seeing the result emblazoned across the iPad, my exulted yells upset the sheep and chickens below. I also thoroughly enjoyed a stroll around Leonardo Da Vinci’s house and gardens and gazed upon his array of inventions without feeling an ounce of dissatisfaction.


In fact, I hadn’t worried about the game for the best part of its duration. I’d mentally prepared myself for a heart-wrenching loss. I was sure that we’d either be stomped on by a rampaging tattooed behemoth that definitely didn’t want to be our Buddy, or pipped at the post after conceding a substantial lead.


So as the sun rose to herald another beautiful French morning, it was easier to immerse myself in the joys of farm-life and to let go the game for a day so I could experience the sights of the Loire Valley without the worries of a football game rudely interrupting an otherwise brilliant day. Wow Paddy, you’ve seen a lamb born and gambolled about the domain of Leonardo Da Vinci, how can a footy loss possibly affect your day after seeing sights like that?
So haha, annoying inner mental protection voice. You shut your mouth next time, you don’t know me.


So, what can I tell you about the game? Nothing much. What do I know about the game? Nada. All I know is what everyone else does: that Jacky Riewoldt kicked six, Cotchy and A.Miles got leather poisoning and newly signed Alex Rance not only gave Buddy a bath, but dried him off with a towel and tucked him safely into bed as well. That much you can deduce from reading a stat sheet or watching the match highlights. You can also safely assume that Richmond’s win will sky-rocket others’ respect for those of the yellow sash.


There are also a few things you can take out of the game from simply binge-watching the highlights. One is that Alex Rance deserves much more respect that he already has. He rarely lets an opponent off the leash, and provides first-class support rebounding from defence. After Franklin kicked two goals in the first half, Rance soon drew in the hulking forward, holding him goalless for the remainder of the match. He also made Bruce and Dennis wet their pants every time he spoiled or rag dolled Franklin.


And for good reason. Rance is probably the best tall back man in the league at the moment. It wasn’t all fair and gallant play though, as Alex employed a tactic throughout the game which was a little bit cheeky. When his direct opponent led to the ball, Rance would spoil from behind before, with all the force he could use without giving away a free, collapsing upon his opponent as he went to ground, causing an “accidental” knee to the back. Nothing malicious (probably), but like the extra oomph of a solid bump or the extra few seconds used to hold down an opponent in a tackle, Rance just gives his opponent a bit of “thanks for coming”. Makes him earn his grab. Nothing wrong with that.


For the Swans, Gary Rohan was amazing in the first quarter. My Dad absolutely loves the man for his dash and comeback after a horrifically broken leg, and I’ve always wondered why. Now I know, as on the highlights, Rohan just scorched the ground with his incredible pace and was very dangerous throughout the first half. He played a huge part in the 32 point lead that his side held in the second quarter.


Kieren Jack also displayed his rugby league heritage and general courage when he faced off against Ty Vickery at a stoppage. Not taking a backward step against the much larger man, Jack looked like he wanted the hairy Tiger to have a go. Impressive, given how Ty’s displayed previously that he can acquit himself pretty well using his fists.


But I didn’t see the comeback. The 50 point turnaround from halftime, which I would have never thought possible from the Richmond end. I’m over the moon that we won, but it feels a bit distant too me, and that’s not because I’m in the other side of the world. In a way, the absence of the stress that would have gone hand-in-hand with a close and tense Richmond game feels a lot nicer, but I would have loved to see my team win.



SYDNEY SWANS  3.4  8.7  10.8   11.11 (77)
RICHMOND  2.4  3.5  10.10   14.11 (95)


Sydney Swans: Franklin 2, Parker 2, Rohan 2, Derickx, Hannebery, Kennedy, Mitchell, Tippett
Richmond: Riewoldt 6, Newman, Cotchin, Deledio, Vickery, Ellis, Gordon, Maric, Miles


Sydney Swans: Kennedy, Parker, McVeigh, Hannebery, Rohan, Grundy
Richmond: Riewoldt, Rance, Cotchin, Miles, Ellis, Maric


Cotchin 1, Riewoldt 2, Rance 3.



  1. it was a surreal night. the eerie silence of the Swans’ fans until they drew level at 77 apiece. the aggro. that was great. the general absence of booing, although I did give Chaplin a couple. the way we turned a second quarter debacle into a great win just as I was ringing Brad Haddin to see if he was available to coach the Tiges. fumbles, bad umpiring for both sides, dodgy interchange, umpires attention-seeking, sublime skills. freaksh goals. to top it all off my 7yo walking into a metal bar on the Tibby Cotter Bridge just as I was explaining to someone how Road Safety Audits are conducted.

    Whatever Jack is sniffing, they should patent. Haven’t see a middle-sized forward this clean and dominant in a long, long time. Can’t really remember anyone quite like it.

    And Vickery has been fantastic. Imposing. Hands clean. Kicking for goal fantatsic.

    But France is OK. I could cope with that.

    PS Speaking of Tibby Cotter, Vic Trumper RIP 100 years tomorrow : (

  2. Great write up Paddy we enjoy reading them every week keep it up

  3. Great work Paddy…..livid Tiger fan from afar.

  4. G’day Paddy as a Tiges fan you might be able to resolve this for me. Is this the Tiges best comeback from a 1/2 time deficit since they rolled the Pies in the 1973 Preliminary final ? Please let me know.


  5. Nice one Paddy. I just checked our schedule. We are in Dubrovnik for the GF. Split for the Prelim. On the Cinque Terre for the Semis, and in Burgundy for the first round of FInals.
    Just thought I would make other Almanackers jealous. AFL Live Pass will get a workout. God willing and the WIFI Bandwidth is OK.

  6. Paddy Grindlay says

    Hi Glen,
    This is probably the best comeback from half-time I’ve heard of for the Tiggers, but the 1998 Richmond vs Hawthorn one was huge. 6 goals down at qtr time, 4 at both half and 3 qtr time and then a six point win after a monster game from Benny Gale.
    Parents bought a cat that week. Called it Benny, of course.

  7. Ta Paddy. Benny the Cat, you can’t fault that ! If my memory is right he was part of Top Cats gang of Cats.


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