Round 13 – Sydney v Richmond: Going Troppo in Tiger Territory

Having family move to the top-end has meant that we sadly don’t often share in time spent together, but also that we now have a wonderful destination to visit. Darwin and the Northern Territory are quintessential Australiana: red dirt, blazing sunshine and towering palm trees lining suburban streets. Our first experience there will never be forgotten. A week with the Tuckers, a joy.

Adjusting from a howling Hobartian winter to a Darwinian dry season, was not easy for this fair-skinned and freckled little Irish-Australian. Respite was found in the cooling waters of Litchfield swimming holes and the beautiful Berry Springs. Oasis’ for a boy built to burn! With every new sight, came an increased affinity with this most wondrous pocket of a most wondrous country. Well played, NT. Well played.

The Tuckers are Tigers. Through and through. As is my better half (despite my continual attempts at conversion). Their footballing persuasion has resulted in this Swan feeling as though I’m being stalked, in preparation for a fearless attack, in the style of the impressive and intimidating salty crocs of the mighty Adelaide River. Snap!

With my holiday routine of morning dip and a stroll to the local coffee shop established, the sun-drenched days roll by and soon game day arrives. After marvelling at the sheer beauty of an un impeded view of a Darwin sunset -resplendent in burnt orange, glowing yellow and deep blue above the glistening ocean- a local watering hole is selected for the big clash.

Bang! This game starts with all the ferocity of the firecrackers on Territory Day. Spotfires abound and the whistleblowers have their hands full. Frantic scenes more common at the Humpty Doo Hotel than the Sydney Cricket Ground I’m sure. The Bloods look as though they are out to impress the 2005 premiership heroes, reunited tonight in the stands, and skip away to a substantial lead. Gaz is lighting the place up and continues to improve. Hanners is celebrating his lifetime contract in fine style, piecing together yet another impervious display through the midfield that has me inwardly glowing at our little champ’s commitment to the Red & White.

The physical approach adopted tonight, comes at a cost however, and by halftime, it seems as though both Buddy & Tippo may be taking an enforced sabbatical. Have they gone troppo? I feel as though our boys all may have, as The Enemy charge, erasing a 32-point deficit and eventually, surging into the lead. J. Riewoldt is causing all sorts of headaches. When T. Cotchin continues to win the footy, and another Top-End draught arrives in front of me, I fear I will have my own headaches to face up to in the morning.

Crash! The Swannies have no answer to this stunning Tiger fightback. A night of celebration honouring past champions has not gone to plan. Oh well, either did my idea of tasting from every food stall at the Mindil markets. The Tigers were too good for my boys and deserved the win. Life goes on. Anyway, there’s no time to mope, it’s time to hit the dance floor.

While looking on in wonderment at the middle-aged man dancing fluently and somewhat provocatively on a table top while balancing a half-filled schooner glass atop his naked cranium, I take a moment to reflect on an incredible town filled with an incredible spirit.

The morning after, little two-year-old Tiger cub Evie greets me with a rousing rendition of ‘yellow and black’ making it impossible to begrudge her and our loving hosts, a famous victory. Well played Tuckers, well played.

Sydney 11.11 (77)

Richmond 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, Cotchin, Miles, Rance, Ellis, Maric

Umpires: Schmitt, Chamberlain, Meredith

Crowd: 37,579 at the SCG


3- J. Riewoldt (Richmond)

2- T. Cotchin (Richmond)

1- J. Kennedy (Sydney)

About Joe Moore

Learned the art of the drop-punt from Derek Kickett as Jamie Lawson watched on. And thus, a Swan for life. @joedmoore1979


  1. Always interesting to watch a game from another city., and the interest, or disinterest, of that cities people. My 17 yr is just back from a few days in Brisbane and commented on such..
    Darwin is superb, great destination, history, landscape etc etc.

  2. jan courtin says

    You chose a good week to be away from the SCG Joe – didn’t miss much!
    Hopefully we’ll be OK this Thursday night and if you’re back – enjoy

  3. Joe Moore says

    Kate – I’m actually in Brisbane now for a few days before heading home. Great city too. Love seeing a new town and Darwin is certainly a special one to visit.

    Jan – I imagine it wasn’t the best night night to be there, although the celebration of the ’05 flag seemed to go well. I’m sure the boys will be fired up this week and ready to hit back!

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