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Sydney v Geelong: I’m down in the dumps. Strewth! Imagine if they’d kicked straight!

I hate losing. At anything. And even though it was my team that lost, it feels personal.


After a toss-and-turn night, lying there thinking of the game, feeling bloody terrible, I got up this morning, and feel worse!


I don’t really know why I’m bothering writing this – I swore last night I wouldn’t, but maybe it will help release some of the shittiness I’m feeling right now.


Why am I a bad loser? Being a perfectionist probably doesn’t help – or maybe they are one and the same. I really can’t be bothered going into the whys and wherefores right now, but suffice to say I don’t like a loss.


God, I remember years ago, in my school days, losing a tennis match. I was inconsolable. Then, a decade later, in England, on a holiday in Spain with Marshall, playing “Snap” on the beach at midnight. He kept winning. I got so frustrated, I threw sand at him, and refused to go back to our tent until I’d won! I mean, how absolutely bloody ridiculous: a stupid inane card game, on a beach, at midnight, throwing sand at my loved one, and staying put until 2am – when I finally won!


Disgraceful behaviour! And I wonder why the loved one has stayed with me all these years!


My years of losing, and that means the Swans, have been plenty, and I still haven’t learnt how to deal with the aftermath. Of course I know all about perspective in life, and can rationally argue that a mere game sits low on the ladder of importance, but when my emotions tell me otherwise, then I reckon I still have a problem.


So, what can be said about this game on Thursday night between the Swans and the Cats. It was pretty terrible, that’s for sure. I have no intention of watching the replay to write about the intricacies, so my memory will have to suffice.


I remember Thursday as being a beautiful sunny day in Sydney. The temperature reached 23 degrees – which shouldn’t be possible in the middle of winter – and it was still 18 degrees when the match finished.


I remember walking to the ground and chatting on the phone to my brother in Melbourne. He asked me if I had a hunch about the game. Said I didn’t have a clue this week. He didn’t want to reveal his, which meant only one thing. As I sat in my seat in the O’Reilly, at 7.15pm, I sent him a text saying “Have a very nasty feeling”.


I remember thinking in the first quarter that the Swans guys looked “heavy”: slow, tired, exhausted. And that there were so many errors. The second quarter was even worse. We botched just about everything we did. The next term was our best, managing to outscore the opposition, and draw level before the break. There was some hope. But unlike past games when we were able to press on and show our class, our last quarter was one to forget.


And I remember, only too clearly, Geelong missing their goals! I mean, really, 31 shots to our 14 – it was a bit of a joke, in hindsight!


And now, this Friday morning, I wake to the news that three of our guys are badly injured: Kizza to a bung knee, Macca a broken collarbone, and Hanners, a calf. And to make it even worse, Melican has done his hammy again – just as he was due to return to the Seniors.


We all know that injuries can decimate a team and their finals’ chances, and we’re not the only one’s with that problem. But with Sam Reid, Tom Papley and Isaac Heeney to return, hopefully the Bloods will fight back.


They’d better, or this bad loser of a human could well be one you wouldn’t want to know come September!


But, as down in the dumps as I feel right now, I can still manage GO BLOODS!


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About Jan Courtin

A Bloods tragic since first game at Lake Oval in 1948. Moved interstate to Sydney to be closer to beloved Swans in 1998. My book "My Lifelong Love Affair with the Swans" was launched by the Swans at their headquarters at the SCG in August 2016.


  1. Georgina says

    It was certainly a game to forget. It was similar to last week, but with more of the heaviness you mentioned. Heartbroken for McVeigh. He has been playing so well, I would hate to see him retire on that note.

  2. Tom Bally says

    Writing as therapy has always worked for me Jan.

    It’s always the manner of a loss that bugs me longer than the loss itself. A terrible game and even worse game plan. Way too predictable for a while now. Getting sucked into defense, bombing it out the back to waiting Enemy and when we go missing the entire team goes into the Bermuda Triangle.

    Hanners needs a spell. Buddy needs help. Is this the last we’ll see of Macca and Jack?

    On the plus side AA looks to be regaining his 2016 form and I’ll mostly forgive Jones’ blues because he does at least try to take the game on. Florent on the burst is a marvel to watch.

    Very curious now as to how the selection committee and coaching staff respond. I think we’ll bounce back even with this tough run to September.

  3. Sydney hasn’t beaten Geelong at the SCG since 2014. I think we have the wood on them at that ground.

  4. Yes, very sad for Jarrad, Georgina, especially at this stage of his career, when he’s been so integral to the team this year, and of course for him personally. Let’s hope he’ll be back!

    And hopefully we do bounce back, Tom. Maybe it’s best to have a couple of losses at this stage of the season, and then get onto a good run towards finals! We can only hope!

    Similarly, we seem to have the wood on you guys at your home ground too, Dips. However, our home ground advantage hasn’t been kind at all this year, with four of our five losses there. Not sure why.

    Thanks one and all

  5. yep go swanns go swans go swans go swans is what i want to yell! wooooha!!!!!!

  6. The word happy would lose its meaning if it was not balanced by sadness. Carl Jung

    And he wasn’t even a Swans’ supporter!!


  7. Supporting Geelong you take what you get – much better game than the week before. I feel more confident of a win if we go in as outsiders

  8. Go Swans, yes, Polly!

    How do we know he wasn’t a Swans supporter, Jude? Born a year after we were formed: in 1875.

    I’ve always preferred my team to be the underdog, Doug. You might have played better, but it was still a pretty terrible game of footy.


  9. Julie Cattlin says

    When I heard the results on Friday, all I thought was “Not happy, Jan!”
    And it absolutely confirmed to me why I don’t follow competitive sports – those highs and lows would surely kill me!!


  10. Carl Jung a swans supporter? He probably followed ‘die Grashupfer’ (the Grasshoppers) FC – established in about 1886 by an English university student in Zurich – unlike the mighty southerners, the Grasshoppers won a bucket load of championships – if one is into winning, ‘die Grashupfer’ would have been a better bet as they certainly would have out-hopped the bloods through all of those dry and frustrating years…..

    Geh Schwäne!!

  11. Thanks Julie and Jude

    I’ve survived, Julie, and imagine I will do so for years to come!

    Very funny, Jude!! I like the Geh Schwäne!!

  12. Luke Reynolds says

    Jan, I thought I was competitive, but 2am Snap, that’s next level!
    Jealous of your warm temperature in Sydney.
    Only saw the last quarter of this game after watching the Aussie T20 team lose to Pakistan. As you mention, it was pretty ordinary to watch, as was our game in parts against Essendon today. I still have Sydney as more of a flag chance than Geelong. But this season is wide open for the team that peaks at the right time.

  13. Dips: Your statement “Sydney hasn’t beaten Geelong at the SCG since 2014” got me thinking.

    We’ve only played each other there once since our meeting in 2014 (which we won), and that was this current game.

    Prior to this week, the last time we lost to you at the SCG was in 2013.

    Luke: My temperature mention was incorrect. In fact it reached 25.6 not a mere 23 degrees. Oh, the Aussie cricket team! Another story altogether. Your footy team going well, even though it was a pretty ordinary game against the Bombers – good last qtr by your boys though.

    As for us a flag chance. Doubt it very much this year. When you’ve got a quarter of your best players injured, it doesn’t auger well. (Naismith, Mills, McVeigh, Reid and Melican – all gone for the year, and Hannebery, Rohan, Papley, and Heeney all recent outs). More than a quarter – almost a half! Thanks

  14. Debby Ross says

    Another perfect post Jan – you’re like a security blanket for me! I take it far too seriously, always have, and the minute someone tells me “it’s only a game” I instantly dismiss them. They don’t get it. And I shuffle out of the ground and people around me are laughing and joking ? what ! That’s why I love going to the Melbourne games. They get it. But back to the game. Just horrible – poor buddy – has no help – paps, Rohan, Heeney, Sammy – all gone. How do we keep ourselves up with others due for surgery..?how do the players do it? We have to be there for them. somehow we must. And we will.
    Cheer cheer boys

  15. Hi Debby
    Many thanks for your kind words!

    The boys will manage, somehow. Hopefully, our resilience will shine through!
    Go Bloods!
    Cheer cheer

  16. Keiran Croker says

    I was up in Sydney on the weekend enjoying the warm weather and socialising in Kirribilli, Balmain and Abbotsford, while also taking in the Archie’s. That was the good part of the weekend. I went up with a Cats mate and can’t say I enjoyed the game on Thursday night. It was an ordinary game and we were pretty awful even allowing for the new injuries. Like you, I’m pretty pissed off for a day or so, until I flip in to solutions mode. Heeney and Papley will likely be back while Newman and Marsh provide good options based on NEAFL form. I think the injuries provide an opportunity for us to roll the dice on debutants Cameron or O’Riordon, or perhaps Dawson for his first game this year. We will be ok. Looking forward to the Roos at Etihad this Sunday.

  17. Hi Keiran

    Pleased you enjoyed the rest of your weekend here! I, too, look forward to the game against North. I think we’ll fight back. Flying down this time, on Thursday. Cheer cheer

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