Round 14 – St Kilda v Essendon: Saints bomb out



It was a great thrill for me to take my grandsons number two, Eddie 8 yo Saints supporter, and number three, Marley 6yo Bombers supporter, to the footy on Friday night at Marvel to watch the mighty Bombers convincingly defeat the Saints.


Grandson number one, Ben 14yo, usually accompanies me to the Essendon matches but a late Friday night game then junior footy at Irrewillippe at 8.30am next morning unfortunately made a night at the footy out of the question for him.



Jemma, Ben, Marley, Col, and Eddie about to leave for the footy



I met up with my daughter Jemma, Essendon supporter, and her partner Ben, Saints supporter, at their home in West Footscray. After a quick bite to eat then it was into our colours. I’d brought an assortment of Essendon scarves, beanies, caps, and jumpers from home for Jemma and Marley to select from to wear to the match, Ben and Eddie are St Kilda members and were kitted out in their colours.


We caught the train from West Footscray to Marvel and found excellent seats behind the goals on level 3. It was a superb position to watch the game from. I like to have an overall view of the game, to watch play movements, and ascertain the effectiveness of the team’s game plan.



Eddie and Ben quietly confident before the start of the game.



With lots of ribbing and barracking amongst ourselves we were ready for the game but realistically I wasn’t overly confident. Short on the backline I wondered how we were expected to combat the talls of the Saints on the forward line.


It was obvious from the start the Bombers were up. There was more intensity, strong tackling, and commitment towards the ball than there had been for most of the season, and it was our talls who were causing problems – for the Saints.


With Phillips in the team to support Draper in the ruck has worked well over the past few weeks. It takes pressure off Draper to ruck all day but provides the opportunity for go forward. Two strong marks resulted in two goals certainly adds an extra dimension down forward. Phillips’ work around the ground, and at the contests gave our runners advantage from his hit outs. Jones, now injury free, provides a tall mobile forward and looked dangerous.  And Peter Wright, with his strong marking and goal kicking is a defender’s nightmare in a one on one contest. He could have easily kicked 6 goals.


Our mids had excellent games. I was concerned the impact of Parish would be sorely missed but wasn’t so. Caldwell played his best game for the season, Merrett and Shiel were constructive, constantly driving the ball forward. Guelfi and Perkins had good games applying pressure to the backs  keeping the ball in the forward in line while Nick Martin, who must be the steal of the season, displays a maturity beyond his years so early in his career. He will be a gun player for the Bombers for many years to come.


I must admit I was concerned when the Saints burst out of the blocks after half-time and kicked 5 quick goals. It was at this stage that Jake Stringer decided to exert his influence on the game. His 2 goals and tackling pressure helped to stop the Saints run-on and  started a run of goals for the Bombers. He is a crucial player for our team, especially when he is playing well.


Massimo D’Ambrosio made an impressive debut, very cool, calm and collected in the heat of the contest, he displayed a poise beyond his years of experience. He bears a striking resemblance to way Adam Saad plays, and if he continues in the manner he did on Friday, the position on the backline will be his for many years to come.



Marley and Jemma wave their scarves at the end of the game



Three of the family had an enjoyable night at the footy. For Ben and Eddie their disappointment with the result was palpable but there is always next week for them to look forward to.


The two hour trip back home to Colac was a lot more pleasurable than it has been for quite a while.



ST KILDA         2.1     3.3     8.4     11.6     (72)
ESSENDON     4.5     7.7     13.11     15.17     (107)


St Kilda: Gresham 3, Billings 2, Higgins 2, King, Marshall, Ryder, Long
Essendon: Wright 4, Jones 2, Stringer 2, Draper 2, Guelfi 2, Durham, Martin, Perkins


St Kilda: Gresham, Hill, Sinclair, Membrey, Battle
Essendon: Merrett, Redman, Shiel, Wright, Stringer


St Kilda: Nil
Essendon: Heppell (hand)


St Kilda: Marcus Windhager (unused)
Essendon: James Stewart (unused)




More from Col Ritchie can be read Here



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About Colin Ritchie

Retired teacher who enjoys following the Bombers, listening to music especially Bob Dylan, reading, and swimming.


  1. Wow! What a surprise. A great memory for you all. Marley in his big jumper looks like a good supporter. I’m thinking you might be a lucky charm for the Bombers Col. What’s your win/loss ratio for attendance this year? I agree with you about Stringer. He stepped up when he could see it slipping away. Perkins is getting more involved each game.

  2. Us Saints have always had the capacity to find mediocrity when its least needed Col, and that was a classic example. We continue to suffer :) Cheers

  3. That will be a great memory for you, Col.
    I like the fact the fact that your daughter’s clan are divided, as there will be many years of rivalry ahead.

  4. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Good stuff Col love the rivalry having fun and ribbing each other

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