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Round 12 – Sydney v Western Bulldogs: Here Come the Swans


Here Come the Swans

7:20pm, Thursday 08 June
SCG, Sydney

Daniel Saunders (age 15)


One thing is for sure. Teams must watch their backs. Never take anything for granted; it will come back to bite you. And in this season, the most even in 221 years of Aussie Rules, this cannot be emphasised enough.


Do not take us lightly; what we showed on Thursday night against the Evil Empire showed what we can do. We are still a good team. Our best football may worry several teams.


The game on Thursday night was the epitome of blowouts, particularly when this Bulldogs mob is the reigning premier. We kicked the first goal through Dan Hannebery’s brilliant crumb and goal, from a boundary throw-in. This was seriously poor from the Dogs; nobody got anywhere near him. Libba will be filthy; he could have cleaned up that mess.


Franklin then fires a 55 metre bullet that sails through, and we have a six point lead going into the first change. We are definitely all over the Bulldogs, and we continue to have ascendancy through the second term. Unfortunately, we are not converting our chances on the scoreboard, and the margin stays less than a goal.


But at the 16-minute mark of the quarter, Buddy finally gives us a break, and the margin is out to 10 points. Apart from the fact that they have barely had the ball this game, the Bulldogs would be pleased enough at half-time being only two kicks away from ascendancy.


Unfortunately for Bevo, what happened in the last two minutes was deplorable, as Papley runs onto a loose ball, and Buddy sinks one after the siren. All of a sudden, we lead the Dogs by 23 points at the main break.


The third quarter is slightly better for the Bulldogs. They end up kicking four for the term. But once again, for every two steps forward, there is one step back for the Bulldogs. They would kick two goals in a row, but the Swans always had an answer. We end up kicking 4.6 for the quarter, despite the fact that the Bulldogs looked better in the premiership term.


We could easily be ahead by 10+ goals if not for our careless goalkicking. But we finish the fourth quarter we three more majors, a good way to ice the cake on an all-round dominant performance. The final score is 12.16.88 to 6.6.42. A final margin by 46 points is glorious, whatever way you look at it.


Our midfielders dominated today. Kennedy finished with a game high 37 touches, leading from the front as always. Isaac Heeney and Jake Lloyd were classy; both stars of the future for sure. They were also ably supported by the likes of Hannebery (28 touches, 8 clearances), Parker (23 touches, 8 inside 50s) and Tom Papley (21 touches, 7 inside 50s and 2 goals). CalSinc and Sam “Mullet” Naismith dominated in the ruck, Heath Grundy was a brick wall in defence, and even Kieren Jack worked his way back into the game.


We are now 4-7, and if we can bring that brand of football to the tougher games, then look out for us later on in the year, when the ladder begins to matter.


But once again, I cannot emphasise enough how even the competition is. And everything I said earlier applies to us as well. We cannot take anything for granted, particularly because of our position on the ladder. We have won four of our last five, but we can always stumble. We cannot afford this. No time for the Bloods to clot. It is up to us to defy the evenness of the competition, and work our way back into contention.


It has never been done before by a team who started winless after six games. But every time we are victorious, it brings us one step closer. Next week against Richmond will be crucial. A side in the top four and looking the goods come September; meaning we will have to bring our A-game to the MCG.


It can still happen. Do not lose hope. The Swans are coming, so watch your backs, all you doubters.


SYDNEY:                      2.2    4.8   9.14   12.16   (88)
WESTERN BULLDOGS:    1.2   2.3   6.3   6.6   (42)



Sydney: Franklin 3; Reid, Papley 2; Hannebery, Kennedy, Parker, Hewett, Lloyd

Western Bulldogs: McLean, Daniel, Stringer, Dickson, Wood, Dahlhaus



Sydney: Heeney, Kennedy, Papley, Lloyd, Grundy, Hannebery

Western Bulldogs: Dahlhaus, Daniel, Macrae, Wallis


UMPIRES: Nicholls, Hay, Findlay, McInerney                                       CROWD: 20,692

OUR VOTES: Heeney (Syd) 3, Kennedy (Syd) 2, Lloyd (Syd) 1

About Daniel Saunders

Yes, that's my Swans hoodie. Yes, those are swans in London. If you're reading this, I hope you enjoyed the ramble.


  1. Mathilde de Hauteclocque says

    No time for the Bloods to clot! Nice, Daniel.

    I thought it was the first game I’ve seen Heeney play where he looked up and going from early on … understandable given the glandular, but he looks genuinely back now. Lloyd is so important for that outside run … Hawks game with neither Cunningham nor Lloyd made hard work for the inside midfielders, trying to do both jobs. I’m also loving the kiddie defenders, Daniel. Melican providing good support to Grundy and Ramps and Newman looking very much like he could wear Malceski/Mattner’s shoes. Composed, accurate and seems to make good decisions. It was an excellent Thursday night, wasn’t it?

    Bogey Tigers the next hurdle. Keep up your optimism!

  2. Keiran Croker says

    Nice one Daniel. I am the eternal optimist and think we can make it. I think the Mullet is one of the keys. We play better when he is in.
    It was a fine team effort. I think Tippo will have a few more games in the Twos, though I suspect they want him, Rohan and perhaps Aliir in. Young Dawson looks outstanding in the Twos and is knocking on the door too. I’m pretty happy with how the current mob is going. Melican and Newman look like they belong and are solid. Hayward is a gem!

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