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Season Preview – Are the Swans good enough to be in the mix this year?

Thank God the football is back! There has been a void in my life since the Swans 2018 season ended. I need the cut and thrust of the football season and my Swans. The emotion, agony and ecstasy that makes you feel alive and part of something special.

 

Summer just didn’t cut it for me. I tried to pay attention across the endless 2678 game Big Bash cricket season before coming to the conclusion that I can’t support a franchise. I can only support a CLUB. I spent time in vigorous debate with Mrs D that our viewing time should not be spent watching Married at First Sight. I undertook Sunday trips to Bunnings where I pretended to care about sprinkler head performance.

 

Playing board and card games with the family at night also wasn’t the answer. Your ego certainly takes a hit when you lose four consecutive games of UNO to your four year old. Mrs D even accused me of pushing the ethical boundaries of Monopoly as I ruthlessly defeated her one evening and narrowly avoided a night on the couch in the process.

 

We tried the beach, however, doing a quick 20 push-ups in the carpark is not going to disguise the fact that my ‘rig’ has been shaped by the $15 Parma and Schooner special at the Watsonia RSL. The fact my six year old is a more competent swimmer also adds a bit of sting to the experience.

 

My scallywags Jack and Harry have also been struggling. At their request we sat down the other day and wrote letters to their favourite players Kieren Jack and Isaac Heeney. I’m not sure Kieren and Isaac will be able to decipher the scribblings of a four year old, or be genuinely interested that Harry eats four Weet-Bix for breakfast, however, it is the thought that counts.

 

The banter has stopped between my mates over summer. The thrill of sending a cheeky half dozen texts to my smug Hawthorn mates after a victory, or turning my phone off until Monday if the result has gone the other way. In summer we talk about lawn mowing!

 

On the positive side my work productivity in the public service has gone up threefold over summer. It is amazing how focused you can be when you are not spending four hours on a Friday afternoon studying the form to try and gain an edge and hold onto your slender two point lead in the office footy tipping competition.

 

Summer has a slow meandering feel. When the footy season hits it is sensory overload. You can’t escape it, especially in Melbourne. Flick on the TV, pick up a paper, jump in a cab, talk to a work colleague, look at a billboard… it is everywhere.

 

What will season 2019 bring for the Swans? For the first time in several seasons I am a little unsure. For years, two decades even, you could set your watch to the fact that our battle hardened team would just roll up, make finals and have a decent crack at the flag. Youth is sweeping through the club at the moment and with that brings a certain level of unpredictability. The growth of our talented youngsters like Aliir, Florent, Hayward and McCartin will have a big say in how far we go in season 2019 I think.

 

What of young Nick Blakey? Will he hit the ground running given his obvious talent and pedigree or will he be a young colt that needs a year in the NEAFL paddock to develop?

 

Each year we get closer to saying goodbye to our favourite veterans. We all have our favourites and want them to hang on for as long as possible (I would have kept LRT on the list until he was 53). Will Kieren Jack be able to shake off recent injuries and spend another year tackling everything in site? Will Reg Grundy continue to be able to blanket the glamour forwards? Will Josh Kennedy still be an immoveable force in the centre-square?

 

The mix of youth and experience must blend together perfectly if we are to go deep into September.

 

I’ve got more questions than answers at the moment. What I do know is that more often than not the Swans get it right. Twenty years plus years of success engenders a level of trust in those who are pulling the strings. As supporters we are all greedy though. We want to sip from the Premiership Cup.

 

In March everyone is full of hope, even Carlton Fans! I am dreaming of high-fiving the scallywags after beating the Demons in Round 4, in what will be their first trip to the hallowed turf of the SCG. I am dreaming of a glorious weekend in Adelaide when I take Mrs D for a trip to see us take on the Power in Round 21. It is all sunshine, lollipops and rainbows until that first ball is bounced.

 

Round 1 sees us take on the Bulldogs. I see they are marking their first match at the renamed Marvel Stadium by wearing a Thor-inspired guernsey. We all know Buddy should be wearing a cape, however, it appears or Superman is an unlikely starter. I’m not buying lack of match practice as an excuse for him not playing though. I think the great man could spend the entire off-season on the coach eating Doritos and still come out and kick three goals.

 

With a few days to go until season 2019 kicks off we sit back and hold our breath in anticipation. I am equal parts nervous, excited and hopeful. The void is about to be filled again and I couldn’t be happier. Cheer Cheer the Red and the White!

 

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About craig dodson

Born in the sporting mecca that is Wagga Wagga and now reside in Melbourne with my lovelly wife Sophie and son's Jack and Harry. Passionate Swans supporter and formally played cricket at a decent level and Aussie Rules at a not so decent level! Spend my days now perfecting my slice on the golf course and the owner of the worlds worst second serve on the tennis course.

Comments

  1. Cherylee wills says

    Should do well. Have awesome players .

  2. Ross Treverton says

    I’m really bullish about the boys this year. A lot hinges on Sam Reid staying fit as he provides that extra tall option up forward. We were too focused on Buddy last year and one dimensional. Good to see Melican back as well and I think Jordan Dawson is a player! Etc, etc, etc
    My 9 year old is signed up for the Swannies this year as a 4th generation Treverton member! She has her jumper and knows the song so it’s all good for her.
    Keep cheer, cheering Craig and scallywags!

  3. Watsonia RSL hey: haven’t been there for a while.

    We have membership @ Greensborough.

    Maybe a fall this year Craig. The club has only missed the finals thrice this century but you still seem very dependent on Franklin,Kennedy & Parker. The three H’s, Hayward, Heeney and Hewitt are impressive but there’ s something lacking . To go on with 1 goal, that being the opening goal of the match, @ 1/2 time is not good. Anyhow you have Adelaide this week,another side unsure of where it’s @. Let’s see how it pans out for R2.

    Glen!

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