Round 19 – North Melbourne v St Kilda: Dreaming

Etihad Stadium

Saturday 30th July 2016, 7.25 pm


I love techno-wizardry (stuff I can’t do or understand). It allows my daughter Rachel to use my iPhone to stream AFL matches to her TV and for us to watch a terrible game up close and personal in Nakano, Tokyo. One down side is that I can’t madly text my support people through what became a rotten game to watch for the Saints people wherever we are. The closeness to the TV made me dizzy as the game ping-ponged, the play one way and then the next and reverse. My head spun. From the bad Saints game to the speed of what was before us.

It was always going to be a tough gig. Brent “Boomer” Harvey breaking the record of games played, the 427th game of his career was bigger than “Ben-Hur.” There is the news that his team has NEVER lost a milestone game in his footy march. Not a good sign for the Saints. North also came crashing out of the gates the previous game, showing their finals push is not over by a long shot, and their position on eighth is only a glitch for the present.

With the formalities over, North came crashing out again and again. In a low-scoring game, we were outplayed in almost every position. Their goaling was more accurate, enough to get them ahead, and to stay ahead, the whole game.

Their stars were terrific, and Lindsay Thomas’ pass at the end to give Boomer a goal in this special match said it all. The Kangas were never gonna let the Saints into this game, and the Saints seemed to have the same idea. There were some great efforts: I liked Blake Acres’ and Daniel McKenzie’s work, and Jarryn Geary worked hard all night. Riewoldt came forward late in the game, as did Bruce. Jack Steven was held well, as was Harvey to a lesser degree. We just didn’t play as a whole and North did. You could see it in the size of their champions — Petrie, Brown, Mullett, Goldstein. Out-muscled all night, we blew opportunities we did have, and I wondered about the huge “occasion” game and the yips it seemed to provide our relatively young team.

So many missed opportunities, goals that you’d assume (either side) would get and yet missed. Each miss blew a hole through the confidence of our young team, and it got shattered more when the opposition made more of their opportunities.

The tackling effort was there for the whole game, the boys never gave up, and in the end, the late goals made our score look better than it was all night. It was a hard lesson for us all. The dreams of finals are there, but the reality is it’s just not quite there yet.

We have to get more poise and be able to perform on these big occasions, against these big men. But as I could hear the cheer squad sing all night: “Let’s go Sainters … let’s go.”

We can regroup for next week’s game against the Blues, and I will be watching this one with Yoshi, on his computer and then on a big screen once the bar opens. As our coach and our team have been saying, we play one game at a time. This one was great for North and a bummer for the Saints, but next week, who knows. We can only dream.

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About Yvette Wroby

Yvette Wroby writes, cartoons, paints through life and gets most pleasure when it's about football, and more specifically the Saints. Believes in following dreams and having a go.

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