Round 18 – Essendon v Brisbane: Reflection and inaccuracy; Brunswick St and Docklands

As it happens I went to a pre game lunch at the home of the Fitzroy Football Club on Saturday. A great meal, and terrific conversations with about a hundred or so in the historic Fitzroy Football Club rooms at the Brunswick Street Oval.


My mind goes back to when Fitzroy was killed by the “bean counters” at the AFL, then the VFL, marketing gurus, economic rationalists, silicon businessmen and television executives all those years ago. I don’t know how people can cope with losing their footy club, but at least for Fitzroy supporters they have a team in the VAFA Premier B and doing well in the latter part of the season.


But what’s this got to do with the Dons playing Brisbane on Sunday? Well Brisbane was created from the sacrifice of Fitzroy and today they are playing them at Empty Head Stadium behind the Spencer Street Railway Station.


I was tempted to go; I reckon the Dons were a good chance. Their form of late hasn’t been too bad and with a bit of luck they may have won a couple of games. Brisbane on the other hand has been hopeless and the press knives are out for the coach and some of their leading players. I have no love for this stadium and decided to stay home and listen to the call of the game on the good old ABC radio.


I hate to think that it’s possible, but I reckon the Dons thought this game was done and dusted and all they had to do was show up to win. So while they were still doing up their shoelaces and stretching, Brisbane had three goals on the scoreboard and playing direct creative footy. Essendon managed to claw back a few goals but Brisbane scored three more so at quarter time they were seventeen points down.


Brisbane’s accuracy was proving a difference, in the second quarter they kicked three goals one to the Dons three goals five. And that scoring told the story of how Essendon was playing. Targets were missed all over the ground, basic stuff like hand passing and kicking the footy to a team-mate. The ABC commentators were less than impressed, me sitting at home even more so. At half time we were only fourteen points down due to a couple of late goals.


Surely we can turn things around for the second half ?


My optimism was short-lived. Brisbane kicked a couple of quick goals and continued on their merry way, too quick and far too accurate, as a matter of fact they kicked six goals two to Essendon’s one goals five. The Dons couldn’t buy a goal, no matter how close in they were; it wasn’t annoying, more like laughable. Lib from the famous Carlton Four suggests a Royal Commission into Essendon’s goal kicking, but even I reckon that’s going too far.  So at three-quarter time Essendon are trailing by forty points, even though both teams have had twenty-one shots at goal.


The last quarter mirrored the previous three, Brisbane far too skillful and able to brush aside any Essendon challenge. The Dons played without confidence and it wasn’t until late in the last quarter that they got a couple of goals. On the scoreboard Essendon actually had three more scoring shots but still lost by thirty-seven points.  Whoever is in charge of goal kicking at The Dons needs to have a good hard look at himself!!!


A very disappointing result for the Essendon Football Club and for this long-suffering Tragic Don. However on the bright side of the weekend’s sport, Fitzroy won a gutsy match against second placed St Bedes/Mentone Tigers and keep kicking on the top four door.



Brisbane  20-8-128  defeated  Essendon 12-19-91


Goals    Brisbane    Walker 4  Green 2  Dawson 2  Mathieson 2 Cutler 2 Rich Hipworth Hanley Bastinac Bewick Martin Mayes Rockliff

Essendon Daniher 4  Fantasia 3 Tipungwuti Dempsey Langford Brown Hams


Best     Brisbane  Rich  Rockliff  Robinson   Martin  Zorko  Bastinac  Hanley  Walker

Essendon  Z Merrett, Parish  Tipungwuti, Francis  Longford  Goddard


Umpires   Donion    Fisher  O’Gorman


Crowd   34,869


FAlmanac banner sq


  1. E.regnans says

    Well played, Rod.
    Pleasure to sit alongside you at the Firzroy lunch. Lovely occasion.

    After Brunswick St Oval, your radio option looks a beauty compared with a soul-removing trip to Docklands.

    There are some important questions still, I think, about the penalty given Essendon (the club) as opposed to that given to individual people, acting of independent free will.

    But at lunchtime, the ideas of club and of game had a better perspective.

  2. Colin Ritchie says

    Good on you Rod, it’s been a tough year for all Bomber supporters but next year hopefully will be much better!

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