Round 13 – Brisbane v St. Kilda: The Sir Doug Nicholls Round: Here’s to you Robert Muir, St. Kilda’s number 32

Brisbane v St Kilda

3.30pm, Sunday August 23

The Gabba

 

The Sir Doug Nicholls Indigenous Round acknowledges and celebrates the contributions that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander players have made to the game. It is the AFL’s way of trying to help overcome the historic racism, vilification and discrimination which has been the lot of Indigenous Australians. The Saints were due to play the Lions at the Gabba on Sunday afternoon. On the morning of the game the ABC website published a lengthy article by Russell Jackson entitled ‘The persecution of Robert Muir is the story football doesn’t want to hear’. As indicated by the title, the article documents the lifetime abuse and victimisation experienced by Robbie Muir, with special emphasis on his career with St. Kilda, from 1974 to 1980 and 1984. It also draws attention to his current medical and financial problems. The article also includes a photo of him in a game against Geelong, lifting his jumper to highlight the colour of his skin in an action similar to that of Nicky Winmar’s iconic moment at Victoria Park in 1993.

 

To the credit of the Saints, CEO Matt Finnis, prior to the first bounce of the Saints-Lions match acknowledged the wrongs that had been inflicted on Robbie Muir and that it would provide ‘necessary support now and in the future, and…ensure he feels the respect and sense of belonging he deserves as one of the St. Kilda Football Club’s pioneering indigenous footballers’. The AFL also issued a statement echoing the Saints’ sentiments.

 

Prior to the toss for selecting ends the indigenous players of both sides – Ben Long, Brad Hill and Paddy Ryder of the Saints and Charlie Cameron and Callum Ah Chee of the Lions – exchanged gifts. This was a closely contested game with the Saints falling short by 2 points. It is rare for a team to restrict an opponent to just six goals and still lose. The ability of both siders to stop the flow of their opponents was equally matched by an inability to take advantage of chances to score (the Saints) or kick straight (the Lions). The game could have opened up and benefited from the paying of more free kicks. There were few examples of flowing play by either side and only one unbelievable goal for the Saints with a left foot banana from the left hand point post by Jack Billings in the last quarter (it is worth watching on replay). The Saints had enough chances to win in the hectic last quarter but to be honest they were only kept in the game by the Lions’ wayward kicking for goal earlier in the game. Both sides may be feeling the pressure of and falling victim to the playing of too many games over a short period; there have been a lot of low scores this round!

 

The worrying aspect for the Saints is that they seem to have lost their efficiency going forward. In most of their games they have managed to convert pressure into easy goals. They seem to have lost their fluency, especially that kick into the forward 50. This is not a problem unique to the Saints. They need to get their mojo back, and soon.

 

The Demons next week. Hopefully ‘good’ will prevail over ‘evil’.

 

Go Saints

 

 

BRISBANE     2.5   3.6   6.13   6.14 (50)

ST KILDA       1.0   3.2   6.3   7.6 (48)

 

GOALS

Brisbane: Berry 2, Bailey, Cameron, McCarthy, Fullerton.

St. Kilda: Butler 2, Membrey, Kent, Marshall, Steele, Billings.

 

BEST

Brisbane: Berry, McCluggage, Zorko, Hipwood, Neale.

St. Kilda: Steele, Jones, Marshall, Carlisle, Geary.

 

Crowd: 13,750 plus Robbie Muir and Russell Jackson.

 

Our Votes: Steele 3 (St. Kilda), Jones 2 (St. Kilda), Berry 1 (Brisbane).

 

 

 

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Comments

  1. Good to acknowledge the treatment of Robert Muir. A great footballer who deserved/deserves better. Fingers crossed that the Saints reclaim their mojo.

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