Stuck in 2012

I am stuck in 2012. The euphoria, the bliss, the contentment, the memories that will not fade. I fear some of my Swannies may be with me, not intentionally, however, that missing 5% of manic determination and drive, coupled with a raft of injuries has called an end to 2013.

I’m not for one second taking anything away from the Dockers. Last night they were epic in the first half. The tackling and pressure was up there with the best the game had seen. The Swans must have thought they were driving a Datsun up Punt Road in a hail storm. No relief, no way through, no air.

The whole season for me has been lived with a sense of contentment. Whereas once I’d be on edge and occasionally hurl a remote at the TV, this year there has been no nerves, no pressure. We got the job done last year and I experienced such joy that it is hard to let go and live in the present.

I like living in the past. I’ve spent the last month on a quest to buy a long sleeve woolen South Melbourne or Sydney jumper. Let me tell you it would be easier to get into the vault at your local Westpac. Sure no one has been making wool jumpers since the early 90s but I’m a resourceful guy. No Luck. Ebay is full of rip off merchants that want to sell me a ‘signed’ Skilton jumper for $500. I suspect the forger hasn’t event spelt the name correctly.

I am given a tip to go to the South Melbourne Markets. There is a mystical store full of footy cards of the 80s and assorted bits and pieces. Do yourself a favour and check it out. I enquire about getting a jumper knocked up but alas the shop owner replied “sorry mate there used to be two woolhouses in town 5 years ago, only one now and they only take orders of 50 plus”. All I need to do now is find 49 other blokes and I’m set! If anyone has any ideas please yell out.

But I digress, back to the football.

The game starts hard and tight. Both sides crack in but the Dockers look in control, however, are wastefull in front of the sticks. Pav misses a set shot. Fyfe is clean and quick. You get the sense the dam wall may break.

The second quarter is a masterclass in pressure football. Crowley is all over Jack and Sydney’s prime movers just can’t get going. You can feel the pressure coming through the TV. Barlow shows why he is so loved by the purple army and you have to respect the discipline of the Dockers. You get the feeling that if Ross Lyon asked them to jump off the West Gate they would duly oblige.

Half time and I’m stunned by the ferocity of it all. 30 minutes and the season has gone up in smoke. There are two options in the second half, stand up and fight, even thought you’re buggered and torn by injury, or give up and get belted by 100. A test for the Swans famous culture. The team has too many warriors to lay down I hope.

The Swans come out and have a crack in the third. They press hard early but make little impact on the scoreboard. You wonder if the Dockers have already started to think of next week? Walters and Suban goal and Mundy continues to have it on a string. McVeigh and Kennedy work hard but it is a losing battle.

The final quarter sees the Swans get on the scoreboard as the Dockers take their foot off the throat. A pleasing sign is Rohan leading with pace and slotting a few. A sign of the future perhaps, the kid deserves a good run at it. A mexican wave breaks out, I scan for Merv Hughes on the field, no this is football I remind myself.

The Dockers are set for the big dance. If I was a Hawks player I don’t think I would have enjoyed last night. As a football purist I think we are due for a cracker next week.

The Dockers show class as they form a guard of honour for Jude. What a servant for the Swans, tough, loyal and from all reports a cracking bloke. You will be missed.

Season 2013 done and dusted. All in all a good season given the effects of injuries to our senior brigade. I think Biggs and Cunningham have a bright future and Parker and Rohan will continue to develop. Again we will be written off in the pre season but I suspect we will be there abouts when the whips are cracking in 2014. That is the Swans way.

Bring on the big dance next week and may the best team win.

Fremantle 14.15 (99)
Sydney 11.8 (74)

Fremantle: Walters (3), Pavlich (2), Fyfe (2), Suban (2), Ballantyne, Neale, Barlow, Duffield, Crowley.

Sydney: Rohan (2), Cunningham (2), McGlynn, Hannebery, Bolton, McVeigh, Jetta, Parker, Pyke.

Freemantle: Crowley, Mundy, Fyfe, Walters
Sydney: Kennedy, Parker, McVeigh

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.


  1. Neil Belford says

    Great story. I totally get that. I do have a woollen – well – a woven original Dockers jumper.

    Stuck in 1968

    Purple haze all in my brain
    Lately things just don’t seem the same
    Actin’ funny, but I don’t know why
    ‘Scuse me while I kiss the sky

  2. craig dodson says

    Wear the multi coloured crime to fashion original Dockers strip with pride Neil, I think you might just get the chocolates next week.

  3. Skip of Skipton says

    Forget the Purple Haze. This is the Purple Maze!*

    *As tweeted by P.Dangerfield.

    There were a few fans still wearing scarves and jumpers with the old red and green on them.
    I saw one fan with the horrid away jumper circa late ’90s/early 2000s. It probably had Luke Toia’s pre-Pav 29, or maybe Clive’s 26. Serious cred and a collectors item.

  4. I don’t think you will have to look long for an original jumper.

    I started collecting 1980’s VFA jumpers about 10 years ago and have found Camberwell, Coburg, Williamstown, Northcote, Brunswick, Frankston, Box Hill, Oakleigh, Springvale, Mordialloc, Moorabbin, Waverley, Dandenong, Yarraville, Geelong West, Preston, Prahran, Sandringham, Werribee, Port Melbourne and Caulfield. I now only need a Sunshine Crows jumper to complete it.

    If I can find all that, a South jumper would be easy. I have seen quite a few South jumpers over the years from the late 70’s onwards with original sponsors patches as well, which I think were Swan Insurance, Wards Express etc. If you look hard it won’t take more than 12 months to find an original.

    I know that Cameron Doyle (a former Preston, Collingwood and Coburg player), who runs a collectables shop – Memorabilia On Smith at 269 Smith St Fitzroy – has many old original match worn jumpers plus cheaper reproductions. That would be a good starting point.

  5. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Good write up Craig and spot on Sydney were blessed with lack of Injuries last year inevitably catches up the next Hope you find your Gurnsey !
    The Defensive Pressure by Freo in the 1st half in particular was the best I have ever seen and Ross Lyon Love or Hate him is a amazing coach they certainly would not have improved lile they have under Harvey a ruthless but correct decision
    My Club in Adelaide Uni FC has had the Pleasure of Richard Colless as a Guest Speaker this season and it is no wonder Sydney have been so Successful we also had
    Nic Fosdike as our Guest Speaker at our Sydney Past Players Lunch who also represented Sydney brilliantly The Bloods culture will continue to Grow Thanks Craig

  6. The most incredible thing about that first half was the gang tackling. It seemed every time a Swan had the ball, they had pack of Freo marauders closing in on them. Real fanatical stuff. It’s gonna be a bone crunching grand final by the looks of it.

  7. craig dodson says

    Thanks for the tip and well done on the VFA collection, will definately give memorabilia on Smith a call. Agree 100% on your Colless call Malcolm, will be hard to replace, Fosdike was one of our best in the 05 GF and a very underated player i think.

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