Swans ignore the script

Waking up, I looked out the window and saw white. That was enough to put me off playing footy for the morning, as well as the pain in my side from lingering pleurisy. But, Dad told me to get dressed and said that I was playing. No point arguing with the old man.

The game against Katandra, at Katandra, was my first game in five weeks since being struck down with pneumonia. I was a little nervous, wondering how I would go, as I had only been to footy training on the Thursday prior. That was my first real exercise since my last footy match, the game I got knocked in the nose, and noticed some blood still on the un-washed jumper as I packed it into my bag.

Arriving in Katandra, the fog was lifting and the sun was shining. The cold morning had turned into a pleasant morning. Dad and I waited around, watching the U/14’s play. I put my name down for a raffle, with the winner getting a Collingwood signed jumper by all the players in 2010. Dad reluctantly gives me money for the ticket, saying that we have enough rags and cloths to wash messes up with.

I get ready, stretch out the hamstrings, calf muscles, quads and my arms, and run out on the ground. From the Katandra rooms and the oval is about 30m, so it was a careful run on the cement in between, with no one wanting to slip. Fortunately, we all made it onto the ground safely, and I took my position at Full Forward.

Halfway through the second quarter, with Waaia trailing by seven goals, I found myself in the forward pocket with no man. Our centre-half forward had it, and I screamed out for him. He kicked it to me, but as the ball travelled through the air, my opponent quickly drifted in front to mark the ball. However, the ball was just a bit too tall for him, the ball spilling off his hands over his back, right into my lap. I put it on my boot straight away, and snapped the goal across my shoulder to open my 2010 account in the second last game of the season.

The game quickly fizzled out as Katandra ran over the top of us, winning by 13-odd goals in the end, but I enjoyed the cheers I got in the rooms after the game. Gee, acting like I’ve never kicked a goal before! It was actually my sixth goal at Katandra, so I have a good strike rate there. I got an award, a pizza coupon, which I might use on the night of my birthday coming up. Dad and I got some food and looked in the main rooms. I saw a framed picture of David Teague, former North Melbourne and Carlton best and fairest winner, who played with Katandra before and after his AFL career. Dad and I headed off soon after, and listened to the pre-game antics on 3AW from the game at Etihad Stadium, North Melbourne v Fremantle.

When we got home, I got on the computer and started to follow the proceedings in Melbourne. The Roos and Dockers. Hamish McIntosh got North off to the best start, before Ryan Bastinac and Aaron Edwards both got early majors. The Kangaroos looked hot to trot, but I heard the phone ring, so I had to quit following the game.

It was Mum on the phone, and as I turned the TV on while talking to her, I noticed that the Sydney v Hawthorn game was halfway through the first quarter! Since when was it on live? Stupid Channel 10. I grabbed my notebook and pen and went to the loungeroom to see Adam Goodes dance around some opponents to kick the Swans’ third. Jarred Moore crumbed and snapped a nice goal, before Jarryd Roughead was given a free kick. He converted with a snap from the boundary line, but the exciting Trent Dennis-Lane chased a loose ball inside 50, punching the ball over a Hawthorn opponent, before running back onto the ball, which bounced back in his direction, allowing the youngster to ram home his first from the goalsquare, and the Swans led by a surprising 27 points at quarter time, 5.4 to 1.1.

The second quarter began and Jarrad McVeigh goaled on the run, before Ryan O’Keefe and Kieren Jack easily put through consecutive majors to take the lead out to 43 points. Ben Stratton drifted forward and booted his first goal in AFL, but the same still couldn’t be said for Lewis Jetta, who already had 0.3 to take his career tally to 0.19. Dennis-Lane got his second, but Rick Ladson replied with a goal from 50m out. The Kennedy name gave much pain to teams other than Hawthorn during the VFL, but it was Josh Kennedy of the Swans who inflicted more damage on his former team, snapping a goal on the siren as Sydney went into half time with a 47 point advantage, 10.10 to 3.5. Is this the same Sydney team that was embarrassed by Melbourne a couple of weeks ago?

I grow nervous for my North boys at Etihad, despite leading by six goals at quarter time, the Dockers charged back into the contest in the second quarter to trail by just 11 at the main break. This wasn’t how things were meant to be. North were supposed to win and the Swans were supposed to lose. I wished for a Hawthorn revival, and wished a bit harder for a North breakthrough. They both came.

Chance Bateman grubbered through a stock-standard goal for many AFL players nowadays, right up against the boundary line under extreme pressure, and Lance Franklin slammed the ball into the turf off his boot, causing the ball to bounce high over the pack in the goalsquare on the third bounce, giving the champ his first goal. Jordan Lewis kicked his first and the Hawks trailed by just 29 points. O’Keefe snapped one back for the Swans, but it was Garry Moss that gathered a Lewis’ square-up, snapping the goal, then Shaun Burgoyne marked, played on, took a bounce and drove home the goal from outside 50, reducing the margin to four goals. This looked better from the Hawks. O’Keefe spun out of danger and bagged his third though, but Lewis, with his fourth shot at goal for the quarter, nailed it. Goodes goaled late to hurt the Hawks, and went into three quarter time with a five goal lead, 13.12 to 9.6. The Footy Gods were having a small chuckle to themselves as Jetta gathered the ball, ran inside 50 and kicked a goal, but the siren had sounded just before he kicked it, so he was denied that elusive goal once again.

The final quarter started and Jesse White got the first, but Franklin kicked consecutive goals, one from the forward pocket and another from outside 50, and the margin was back to 23 points. Ben McGlynn sealed the game against his old side however, then a fourth from O’Keefe saw the margin out to 36 points. The time came then. It had to come sooner or later. Martin Mattner got the ball inside 50, and saw a loose man in the pocket. He kicked it there. The loose man marked, and played on. The red and white army started to look interested, started to get their flags ready as the loose man ran towards goal, looking uncertain of what to do with it. But Jetta angled the ball across his boot, and the ball sailed through, his first goal in AFL after 15 games and an agonising 19 behinds. He went into a celebrating frenzy, with Swans’ players mobbing him from everywhere and the crowd cheering him on. The Hawks stood and watched, but soon got the ball back in a dangerous position, with Franklin booting his fourth from the goalsquare. McGlynn gathered the ball inside 50 and snapped a curling ball through the goals for his third, sending the red and white army into another frenzy, but a late goal to Roughead silenced them to an extent. They were back in full voice however, as Dennis-Lane marked on the siren, and kicking his third as Sydney celebrated the emphatic victory.

As Jetta was sprayed with Powerade in the rooms after the game, Paul Roos must’ve been grinning from ear to ear. The monkey is off the back of Lewis, and he’s ready for more goals. Let’s hope the celebrations get better with each major.

Sydney 5.4—10.10—13.12—19.15.129

Hawthorn 1.1—3.5—9.6—13.7.85


Sydney-O’Keefe 4, Dennis-Lane 3, McGlynn 3, Goodes 3, McVeigh, Kennedy, Jetta, Moore, Jack, White

Hawthorn-Franklin 4, Roughead 2, Lewis 2, Ladson, Stratton, Burgoyne, Moss, Bateman


Sydney-Jack, Goodes, Kirk, Grundy, Mumford, McVeigh, O’Keefe

Hawthorn-Lewis, Mitchell, Franklin


29,431 at the SCG


3: Kieren Jack (S)

2: Adam Goodes (S)

1: Brett Kirk (S)

About Josh Barnstable

21 year old North Melbourne supporter from country Victoria. Currently living in Melbourne studying a Bachelor of Sports Media. Dreams of becoming a sports journalist and broadcaster.

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