Round 12 – The Wrap: The Broader Scope of Things

Where Life imitates Football – Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.


Thursday night saw TRP venture into the 24th anniversary of its first game of Football against The Mighty Adelaide Crows. In fact it was TMAC first match at the Elite Level. Two moments that made the 1991 event memorable was the humiliating defeat of the then reining premiers and VFL/AFL Powerhouse Hawthorn, and the unleashing of The Rabid Adelaide Mob. On this 2015 anniversary TRAM was muted and the result was reversed.

As sure as Friday follows Thursday The Striped Marvels, right on cue, fluffed their lines in their return to centre stage. However, it was not all doom & gloom around at Punt Road. They have regained Glorious Ninth: the Best Team Out of The Finals. (And re-signed All Australian Full Back Alex Rance – Ed)

Saturday saw The Return of The Monster From The Blue Lagoon as they valiantly withstood a late Port Power Surge. North did what had to be done to put the Fee Fi Fo Fums out of their misery. And The Doggies brought their faltering season back to life with an eleven goal win over The Rebuilding Maroons.

Come Sunday and it was all about Corey Enright’s 300th match in the Navy Blue & White Hoops of Sleepy Hollow. During the celebrations the Melbourne Football Team quietly stole the Four Points and slipped back up the Geelong Road to the Big Smoke.

Talk about a week of Football. Before the Indigenous Game – Our Own Great Game – got under way on Thursday the knuckle draggers demonstrated how mindless it could be to run into brick walls and still be entertaining. There were fireworks, there were tackles, there was biffo, and there were tries. Everything the 91,512 fans that braved the Winter chill could possibly desire. Their fans too demonstrated their class. Asked to stand in a minute of respectful silence for one of Australia’s truly great sportspersons – that’s a third of the time it takes McDonalds to serve a burger with the lot plus fries & coke – they were never going to be anything other than themselves. Even being amongst 90-thousand-odd fellow sports lovers was never going to cower their basic instincts. It certainly confirmed how far they’ve evolved from a primitive life form of the primeval swamp to a member of one of the more sophisticated and comprehensive sporting cultures on Planet Earth. Some commentators rushed to recognize the tortured vowels of trans Tasman accents in the catcalls. But really, what’s it matter in the broader scope of things.

Wada World. Over where they’re still arguing about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin they’re still deciding whether to challenge ASADA’s backdated & reduced 12-month ban on Player Crowley for testing positive to a banned substance. He was found to have elevated levels of methadone in his bloodstream while in competition. The methadone was supposedly in a painkiller he was imbibing. (You dropped off the theory that it could have come from eating frozen prawns from China Wrap? – Ed) Not entirely Oh Wizardly Weaver of Words, but considering the pharmaceutical cocktails we absorb from modern living, don’t you think it’s about time we set ourselves modern guidelines from which to pass judgment? Or even got ourselves a set of modern judges?

Then there’s the case of Kylie Palmer. If ever a case cried out for a revision of how WADA goes about things this would have to be it. (You talking the next Dreyfus Case here Wrap? – Ed) Originally cleared by swimming’s governing body FINA – Fédération Internationale de Natation if you like – because the reading was miniscule. Samples taken a week before and a day after the original positive finding proved negative. As were two later tests run by FINA. As you would expect in any science, the original positive finding was classified as an aberration and the 25-year-old career swimmer was cleared. (Legal advice from the Wrapcave Legal Department was even more adamant on the matter than the standard any charges could, should and would be vigorously contested.   Anyone bringing those charges to a legally constituted justice system would be laughed out of court was the actually memo we received – Ed) Now WADA’s got it’s back up and has challenged that outcome.   Yes Wrappers, the World Anti Doping Agency based in Lausanne has asked Our Kylie to remember everything she ingested nearly two years ago to establish a case for unwittingly ingesting something that could be the reason her sample showed a positive test for furosemide on day 6 of a testing program spread over seven days. Hang on; isn’t FIFA based nearby, in Zürich? There couldn’t possibly any cross tainting in the thought process and actions could there? (Drawing a long bow again Wrap, but it is the part of the world where the conundrum of how many cherubs can jive on a needle point remains unresolved – Ed) The possibility of contamination during the sampling or testing processes doesn’t seem to have cautioned the supreme body’s actions, however, it could lead to a more thorough scrutiny of the agency than it cares for.

Then there’s the case of Lycraboy Lance. Seven years in the making and it wasn’t WADA that broke the case anyway.

Speaking of modern judges, sophisticated cultures and world governing bodies, a roundball official has admitted there was a deal that saw Qatar earn the right to host the 2022 World Cup. Which seems to be against the Federation’s rules. (We’ll pause here while the ushers clear those people guffawing the public gallery – Ed) Some observers consider this revelation as yet another step in stripping the tiny oil-soaked sheikdom of the right to hold the event. (Damned if you do; damned if you don’t, eh Wrap? – Ed) Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive Ed. Or as Sir Walter Scott would have said if he’d been born into a parallel world and worked out at Car City Ringwood – they’re in more s**t than a Werribee duck. One outcome of stripping Qatar of the 2022 Cup could be the splitting of the World body. And the inauguration of several World Cups from a spread of FIFAs over several confeerences, just as they have several World boxing titles for the same weight division. (Hey, out of the mouths of babes and savants. That’s, not such a bad idea Wrap. How much more revenue could be spun out of having several conferences in a spread of time zones? – Ed)

Slammin’ Sammy Stosur is back in the Strawberries & Cream rankings for the 2015 event. Back with her old coach, David Taylor, she’s building up a bit of Self Belief in preparation for a title at the Premier Crown of World tennis. Sadly Self Belief hasn’t smiled Tiger Woods’ way. Sports Fans may be bewildered by it all – his fall from grace – but that doesn’t make it any the less heartbreaking to watch The Tiger put himself through this. (Surely he doesn’t need the money? – Ed) Walk away Tiger. Let us remember you as you were in the prime of your youth.

But you’d be excused for feeling our American cousins would be thinking Australians are a nation of supermen & women. Crocodile Dundee and his superblade were followed by the Man of Steel himself: Little Johnny Howard. Then Lauren Jackson and a run of Aussie male basketballers culminating in this year’s final with Matt Dellavedova & Andrew Bogut. But the clincher would have to be Jason Day. Felled by vertigo, he led the field into the final round of the US Open in a four-way tie*.

Golf Tragics raised in the sandbelt courses of Melbourne would surely be bewildered by the choice of venue for one of the nation’s premier sports events. The Chambers Bay links looks like a site clear-felled for a pine plantation. The greens have been described as putting on broccoli and no less an authority than Career Grand Slam winner and architect of over 300 golf courses has pulled no punches.

“The worst golf course I might’ve ever seen in the 63 years as a professional golfer… The USGA, who I admire and have chosen great golf courses in this great United States of America — they’re preaching speed of play. Enjoyment. User-friendly. This golf course here, if you’re a 10-handicap, you couldn’t break 100 if you had the best day of your life. They’ve got pros putting from 20 feet and hitting the ball 20 foot to the right, a man misses the green by a yard and he’s 50 yards down in the valley. I mean I don’t understand it.”

Now a Grassy Knoll kind of person might be asking why they chose Chambers Bay in the first place. That aside, it makes Jason Day’s efforts even more memorable. It looks a brute of a course to play on, which the scores reflect. And hasn’t the gallery taken Jason into their hearts? The course mightn’t be classy, but the crowd is.

Talking of classy, how about those Matildas? They drew with 5th ranked Sverige and have now beaten 7th ranked Brasil to move into the quarter finals. Go you Aussie Good Things. Put a gap in ‘em.

And here’s The Skip of Skipton 8-point Ladder as it sits at the end of Round VII. (Better check it out Skip. He’s always distracted after a Richmond loss – Ed)

WEST COAST                      69.5

FREMANTLE                        69.0

SYDNEY                                64.5

HAWTHORN                     62.0

COLLINGWOOD                 60.5

GWS                                      53.5

ADELAIDE                           48.5

Richmond                       48.0


Geelong                               47.5

North Melbourne                47.5

Footscray                             45.5

Port Adelaide                     42.0

Essendon                             34.5

St. Kilda                               32.0

Melbourne                          29.5

Brisbane                               25.5

Carlton                                20.0

Gold Coast                         18.5


These stats won’t mean a heck of a lot until we get this split round holiday out of the way and all the teams have played the same number of matches. You see, Hawthorn and GWS are the only two teams in The Eight that have completed 12 matches.


But enough of my gabbin’. Let’s see who ducked & delved in Round XII.

The Pride of South Australia v The Mayblooms. While not quite a stroll in the park, this was a convincing win for TRP. However, take Patrick Dangerfield out of their line-up and the dint to the pride of South Australia would have been greater. The newly signed Rory Sloane also held up the inexorable march of the Yankee Doodles. Without their input, a 6-goal loss could easily have become a 10-goal plus rout. The Family Club have invited The Club That Dare Not Speak Its Name to THOF for a shindig in the early one next Saturday. The Free Settlers are off to Moreton Bay to take on The Brisbane Lions in the gathering sub-tropical gloom on the same day.

The Striped Marvels v The Weagles. The Tiges forfeited an early lead but had their noses in front by ½-time. With NickNatNui giving Big Ivan a master class in what rucking is all about, and Dusty Martin unstoppable in the Richmond forward line the outcome was up for grabs in the Second Half. (Some SOTG were saying it was one of the best displays of palming since the heady days of Polly Farmer – Ed) After the re-start it was all West Coast. They booted 6-6 to 2-7 in a contest that lacked nothing in endeavour from either protagonist. The scoreboard probably flattered Richmond in the end. They made many costly errors and fell down in attack. But their most costly mistakes came in the opposition goal square. The Wedgies scrambled three majors from scrimmages that could just as easily been rushed behinds. What hurt even more was that they didn’t come from recognized goal-sneaks; two of them came from came from The Coasters big key forwards. After the game Coach Hardnose said they, West Coast, were the best team they, Richmond, had played this season. (They haven’t played Sydney or Hawthorn yet – Ed) The Eagles have the next round off. The Tiggers are back on centre stage on the Friday night up in Harbourtown when they visit Moore Park.

The Bluebaggers v The Power From Port. We got one thing right; it was a thriller. The team that Mickey couldn’t get to kick more than nine goals a match booted 17-8 to pip The Fast Finishing Port Power by four points. This is a refreshing turnaround in their season, and hate ‘em or love ‘em, when The Famous Old Dark Blues are on the rise it’s GFF. It may cost The Silvertails another Coveted Sylvan Shield, but the sponsors and the Appalling Football League fixers will be breathing a sigh of relief. (As will the Channel Seven executives – Ed) They have invited The Metermaids down to the Shifting Sands of The Docklands next Sunday to finish off the 2015 Toyota Premiership Season split rounds. As for The Power, it leaves them 5&7 without much to cover their embarrassment. They have the bye next round before a trip to Sin City at the invitation of The Sydney Swans. They could consider themselves stiff on Saturday. They lost Robbie Grey to Bryce Gibbs’ first tackle of the season and some of the umpiring decisions appeared to be swayed by the vociferousness of the 27,693 crowd crammed in to the MCG. (A little echo goes a long way, eh? – Ed) SOTG however may more accurately cite Jay Schultz’s miss in the crucial Final Stanza. Gerard Whatley, calling the moment, said as the Jayman lined up – Jay Schultz on his worst day couldn’t miss this shot, then added he was actually having his worst day. Schultzie then proceeded to make GW’s kiss of death prophecy come true by hitting the post. The Football Gods in action? Quite possibly. Why? The poor behaviour of their fans could be one reason. (You still getting over the True Port Adelaide Tradition welcome they gave The Tigers in last year’s Elimination Final Wrap? – Ed)

The Leviathans v The Soupbones. Even The Soupboners couldn’t blow this one. Compromised at the Selection Table, The Orangemen had to make further changes on match day. Toddy Goldstein didn’t do his Brownlow prospects any harm and delivered the second polished rucking performance of the round. (Ah, the lost art of ruckmanship; such a welcome return – Ed) The Giants’ effort was commendable and while the seams of the medical tent are at breaking point, the pulse at the club is strong. They get a fortnight off before coming down to Bleak City to take on Struggletown in the early one on the Saturday. North too have some R&R before a trip up to the Metricon for the Saturday twilight match in Round XIV.

The Dogs v The Boys From Old Fitzroy. The Scraggers regained some of their early season form in this one. And while the 2015 Lions may not be the most accurate barometer by which to measure form, Luke Beveridge would have been pleased with some aspects of his charges’ effort. There’s a lot of class out there at Whitten Oval and they can go into their match against the season’s other big improver next Saturday night with a healthy degree of confidence. (For those who have trouble following the Wrapster’s whimsical obscurities, that other big improver is St Kilda – Ed) The Maroons are back up under the palms for a twilight zone encounter with The Pride of South Australia.

The Pivotonians v The Redlegs. Who would have seen this coming? The Handbags booted the first two majors and everything looked like it was going to be a procession through to chairing Corey Enright off the ground after his 300th match. After all, This was The Greatest Team of All playing a team that had won only eight games in 34 attempts since Paul Roos took on the consultancy last season. Before that they were a basket case. Once The Dees overhauled The Moggies they were headed only twice– in the Championship Quarter – and then only briefly. With Nathan Jones clone Bernie Vince in full flight, as well as another lead-from-the-front game from the Skipper himself, The Demons totally dominated the Veteran Cat’s Midfield. The same midfield that has served them so well over the years. It will certainly give the list planners down at The Cattery something to think about. (It’s worth mentioning for the irony of it. Not that long ago the outcome from a Melbourne visit to Geelong put enough pressure on the Visiting Coach to cost him his job. This time the outcome has put the Home Coach under pressure – Ed) The Tabbies also didn’t do themselves any favours by going into the match without a recognized ruckman. But the bottom line was that The Redlegs’ desire for the Pigskin was far greater than that of The Pivotonians. And now they’ve tasted blood they’re going to trouble more than a few this season. The Cats will still trouble a few too, but a trip to the Cattery isn’t as fearful as it used to be. (Just before you wind this one up Wrap, let me quote you on Thursday – However, a Melbourne win is out of the question. The Moggies to win comfortably in the end. They have just too much to lose, and too much firepower on the paddock. If you read it in The Wrap you’ll know it’s not crap indeed – Ed) Both sides take a breather next week and come back in Round XIV. The Hoopers will be playing The Free Settlers in the Shadows of Mt Lofty on Sunday arvo. And The Fuchsias host The Wedgies on Saturday night up in The Top End.

And remember, if you read it in The Wrap you’ll know it’s not crap.

* – At the time of going to press, Jason day had dropped a couple of shots at the turn, Adam Scott was five under at 16 and two under for the tournament. Cameron Smith was even with the card at the turn and one under overall. These three Aussies were amongst the nine players who had the better of this testing links.

About John Mosig

I'm an Aussie Rules tragic who can remember, as a four year old, shaking the hand of Captain Blood in the rooms just before he ran out onto the ground after half time, as my Old Man slipped him a packet of under-the-counter Craven A cork tipped. Now it's my turn to take my grandson Ben through the ritual of character building that is the journey through PUNT ROAD to the outside world.


  1. Skip of Skipton says

    Hawthorn weren’t the reigning premiers in round 1 1991, Wrap. The Pies were.
    I remember a mate getting very excited about the Crows after that game. I bet him $20 that they wouldn’t make the finals.

    Veteran Cats midfield? Stokes might be classed a veteran I suppose.

    Amendments: Hawthorn 61. GWS 52.5. Melbourne 36.5. Brisbane 18.5.

  2. Where would I be without you Skip. Thanks.

    And you’re right about TRP too, the Hawks went on to become TRP of 1992.

  3. Blow the whistle. Freeze that ladder. Season over. I love that 8 point ladder. Who needs Finals? Well done Skip. I hope the AFL adopt it (this week).

  4. Yes Wrapster not a veteran Cats midfield anymore – Selwood, Johnson (yes a veteran) Lang, Caddy, Motlop, sometimes Gregson, Guthrie, Stokes (maybe a veteran). Most of them have only been shaving for a few years.

    Put back Bartel, Kelly and Duncan and a ruckman taller than me and we’re a chance.

  5. The Wrap says

    Bartlett & Kelly would have to be in the veteran class Dips. And Matty Stokes seems to have lost half a yard. Stevie J & Selwood are battling if the others can’t take the pressure off them. Besides, they’ve served their colours well. Time to take up a commentary job.

    It’s a way of keeping the bastards honest and gives the lower teams something to play for quarter by quarter, even if they’re not in the hunt for the 4 points Mr B..

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