Round 3 – The View from Shepparton: Too many minors a key issue for Collingwood

by Peter Schumacher

As I wind up my gramophone, I am sure that I must be the only footy fan preparing to put down thoughts accompanied by Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, BWV 565 in glorious SACD sound. True, I am not in the right room, but still, sounds pretty damned good through another set of speakers.

And yes Virginia, there is a God. I know this because Freo got over Geelong. Fair dinkum I have to tell my financial adviser, yet again, that to become wise and knowledgeable in matters football a pay TV subscription is a must. The counter view point has always been  that the glorious sound plus countless adds on was a must, and spoken as a true Queenslander, where does all of this wanton expenditure end?  When I think of an answer to that I will provide it. Any suggestions  from Almanackers would be appreciated!

Back to the point whatever that was, ah yes, Freo. What a fantastic game it turned out to be. It is great to see that a team that has been so maligned looks like at last that it might be the real deal. Yes we all  know that there has been false dawns before but to come back from 20 points down in the third quarter, and against the reigning premiers, well this so un Fremantle. I reckon that as any footy connoisseur would drive miles to see Gary Ablett in action, and he again was magnificent at times on Sunday, I reckon that Pavlich, Sandilands, and even Barlow are now making such an impact that it would be worth seeing them as well. Having said all of that, in terms of the final result Geelong were severely weakened   without Ottens for one; yes I know that Tarrant was out too; but they only really just missed out.  Of course the the previous year’s premier will always be the measuring stick for  at least at the start of the season.

I think that Freo could perhaps attract the biggest crowd they have ever played in front of this weekend  at least at Colonial or whatever name it goes under this year.

That gets me to St Kilda. Such a gutsy win. Was going to have a real spray at Mick who I had previously viewed with some favour as a reasonably calm and rational person in matters football, but I am starting to think is a bit of a goose. I heard an analysis on “The Inquisition” I think it was Stan Alves, who reckoned that once Riewoldt was off it completely messed up the Collingwood strategy because no one knew the game plan after that. As was also pointed out in the same program, probably again by Stan, woeful kicking and turnovers were lowering the standard of not just that game but many played this weekend. If one thinks of goals under pressure, think John Eeles, John Aloisi, or even Jack Anthony last year. Ironic that Anthony was dropped this week, or at least I think that he was. I reckon that rather than having  skills coach for everything ranging from public speaking to being able to name five prime ministers of Australia to the way women should be treated this century, they ought get some genius to show these blokes how to kick goals with a better than one chance in five success rate. In regards to Collingwood as a correspondent reminded me in a very prescient comment after round one, the Magpies always make a noise at the beginning of the year but it never does them any good. Don’t know if Joffa is still going, he should have quit whilst he was ahead, even if his club wasn’t.

I happened in the course of my employment over the weekend to visit the home of two very disgruntled Carlton supporters. Reckoned that they were sick of their team being second rate easy beats in a game that they could have won. I just wonder, does Fletcher ever get old? How that bloke can play so well week in week out is beyond me. Essendon could yet be  worth watching this year.

Richmond is the same Richmond with the added bonus of having Cousins to worry about. Not the best recruitment ultimately. Out of the West, out of his environment over there, out of form and the sort of problems you wouldn’t wish on anyone. Hope that the rumours are wrong, had always hoped that he might be able to make a fresh start. If I were a Richmond supporter though I mightn’t be feeling so charitable to the recruiting mob or the player himself. Sydney are Sydney, always really tough to beat. They will be there in the finals, even this far out.

I would love to wax lyrical about Brisbane and in truth to beat Port at home is really great but the latter look like they are going to run hot and cold again this year. May the Lions continue to run hot! Was vaguely thinking of flying to Brisbane to watch this week’s game against the Bulldogs, Hall has made a great start for them this year. Brown furthered the comparisons between himself and the Duck. I note that  as has been pointed out to me more than once that the Lions are not just a one dimensional one man (or two if you count the Fev) team but that for example Rischitelli,  Rich,  Leuenberger, Staker, and Sherman are doing OK as well. I am indebted to the Oz’s best players list for the last comment.

Adelaide are unlucky, really unlucky but they are stuffed this year. It is impossible to recover from 3 down and your best players injured as well. I do have to make the observation though that in South Australia, the depths of reserve are pretty thin given that Aussie Rules rules over there, unlike say Brisbane where Rules is very much the second code, or even Sydney where the average punter in Western Sydney has apparently never heard of Kevin Sheedy. The result was a real get well present for  Jim Stynes and who would begrudge him that. I admired the fact that Dean Bailey conceded that Adelaide had persisted to the last.

As alluded to previously the Western Bulldogs were OK against an injury depleted Hawthorn who did however stay in the competition for three quarters.

The West Coast seemed to be back on the road after the first quarter against North Melbourne but they could not sustain the effort. This was another bad result for John Worsfold but a great result for Brad Scott who must be heaving a huge sigh of relief.

Meanwhile, in the big league the Shepparton Swans and Echuca were involved in a three quarter time brawl, the second in a week for the Swans, who after all do have Adam Yze and Russell Robertson playing for them. For the record Echuca won by a mile.

About Peter Schumacher

Wannabe footy commentator and writer, used to be a wannabe footballer


  1. Get your money on the Bulldogs. The league has spoken with the judgement of the Harbrow Lewis incident. Protected species?

    One player coming flat out with both feet off the ground hits another, coming the opporsite way, in the head and knocks them out (completely polaxed) must now be considered acceptable.

    The rules committee or review crew are leaving themselves open with that precident.

    Whether there was intention or not there was still contact with the head and it was not slight. Excessively rough play.

    By allowing it is the AFL leaving itself open to litigation for failing to provide a safe work place? Other players have been outed for much less.

  2. The fact that Harbrow got to the ball first, and that the ball was his only focus, should be the decisive issue here. How about a player going for a hanger knees someone in the back of the head and knocks him out?
    The whole issue of risk management and liability is contingent on ‘inherent risks’ The High Court has said: “The only way to avoid all risk of injury is not to play at all. No doubt the rules could be altered in many respects to make it safer but people playing or watching (rugby) football have other priorities”
    There is no liability for harm suffered as a result of an obvious risk of a dangerous recreational activity. I would suggest a player running with the flight of the ball knows what could happen but takes the risk anyway because its part of the game. Provided the players coming the other way act within the rules, there should be no issues.

  3. Cheers Mark. That’s cleared that.

  4. You’re a legend Shoemaker!

    How come the wankers on 7, 9 and 10 haven’t headhunted you?

  5. Peter Schumacher says

    I’d prefer my abysmal footy ignorance to stay in the confines of these idiosyncratic posts!

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