The 2016 88A Cup – Round Twelve

Greetings Tipsters


What are the odds, eh?  What Are The ODDS?  Three teams kicked 15.15.105 this weekend, two more kicked 15 goals.  There’s a pleasing symmetry about 15.15.105 and 15.10.100 and 7.7.49 too.  Surely somewhere down the line there’s been a game result of 15.10 or 15.15 to 7.7.  I hope someone can enlighten me.


Friday eve’s match should have been taken out behind the shed and put out of its misery at halftime.  Even the Hawthorn players, on a percentage-boosting mission, seemed a bit embarassed, almost unsure of the rightfulness of being there.  Essendon, poor bastards, it’s only gonna get worse.  I figured in February that between the kids and the underdone retirees the Bombers would struggle to field a team by August.  How ya gonna handle that, Gillo?  Pull on the boots for the greater good?


Saturday, Port could have done more for symmetry.  13.13 or 14.14, but they had to go and mess with it.  They’ve had three losses in the last five weeks by a total of 13 points, but for a few errant bounces they’d have knocked the Wiggles out of the Eight.


‘Crows stamp premiership credentials.’   ‘Crows feast on Eagles.’  I used to do a bit of sub-editing and could come up with a few more of these.  We’ve never doubted the Liquorice Strips’ ability to score but they’ve a leaky defence.  Keeping West Coast scoreless in the last term at Subiaco belies that.  Whether it continues is another matter, one that Adelaide’d want to concentrate on.  For the Wiggles, it’s a signpost.  If they don’t pick things up bigtime, and quickly, they risk missing finals, won’t win any, anyway.


Worth noting here that Footscray, West Coast, Carlton, Monaros are coached by, as the tabloids put it, graduates of the Clarkson Academy.  Brisbane are coached by a graduate of the Hardwick Academy.  Move along, folks, nothing to see here.


I fell asleep on the couch before halftime in the North/Geelong match.  North were ahead, but the Pivotonians were faster and sharper.  That’s the key, North are ponderous.  Sorry Grandad, but you know it’s the truth.


When I was a l’il tacker in Sydney and first noticed Australian Football I was briefly a Carlton fan, cos it was a big club.  Then I heard that St Kilda was Melbourne’s Kings Cross so I decided that that’d be my team.  The Saints win was thus pleasing.  Both are works in progress.  Whether some success, let alone the Ultimate Success, come their way is a question best left to the gods for now.  Club culture counts for a heck of a lot.


It was damn decent of Gillo to schedule the Sydney Derby for the Twenty-fourth Anniversary of the party at 88A Fitzroy St.  I motorbiked over to Jeff’s place, we’ve been greatest mates since 1986, just ask him if that party wasn’t the alltime Number One ripyourheadoff, standingroomonly, offourscreamingchops party.  We were sitting in the loungeroom, furniture replaced with amps, mics, drumkit, Jeff said “What if no-one shows up?” then Roddy came in and said “Let’s play some music” and it was non-stop improvised rock and roll from dusk ‘til dawn.  Swedish backpackers came up the dunny lane and crammed the backyard, friends’ band played nearby then they and theirs came over, cops came over and were shut out, neighbours came over and threatened violent death, it was a marvellous weekend.


Jeff has two sons in the Swans Academy and sees the game in red and white.  He had a good ol’ rip at the Swans and I almost envied him his involvement.  Sydney were never really in the game.  They kinda got close early, maybe it was the toll of the wet track, but too many of their best players were unseen.  Losing Tippo didn’t help, he’s been playing great, they’ll miss him.


Talking to Dad before the match, I said that Monaros pace would be the difference.  Sydney are faster than North but slower than West.  Most everyone is slower than West, they’ve four very winnable games before they fly to Adelaide to play Port, then more winnable games, then North at the Terrordome in the last round.  Monaros for the Wm McLelland Trophy?  It’s worth a flutter.


The NSW govt have $1,600,000,000 to spend on stadiums.  The Olympic Stadium will become a rectangle, the SCG and Showground will be the only grounds capable of hosting AFL or international cricket.  It’s a matter of some millions, 20 or 30, to get the Showground to 30 thou capacity.  The foundations are there, eight weeks to fill the gap at the northern end.


In other news, Dustin Martin beat Gold Coast and Buckley’s coaching career is on the line.  Late news, Naitanui’s out for six.  Write off the Wiggles.


So what are we looking at, another week when expectations are proven to be built on sand?  Hey, this year, sand is the best foundation any team can wish for.  So far.


Cheers Tipsters


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About Earl O'Neill

Freelance gardener, I've thousands of books, thousands of records, one fast motorcycle and one gorgeous smart funny sexy woman. Life's pretty darn neat.


  1. Luke Reynolds says

    As always, good read Earl. Get that Showgrounds capacity up to the max ASAP. They’re gonna be hosting a few finals over the next few years…..

  2. E.regnans says

    Among my favourite weekly things to read, EON.
    Love to learn more of 88A.

  3. Mathilde de Hauteclocque says

    Only saw North/Cats and the Sydneys this weekend. But feel like I’ve tasted the lot now, Earl. If only other life events could be marshalled into such tight, funny paragraphs. Joyous. Merci.

  4. Entertaining read,EOL bugger the footy sounds like a hell of a party

  5. “Write off the Wiggles.” Pfft. Just a wake up call.
    Notice you had a blind man assisting you this week.

  6. Earl O'Neill says

    Peter, I’m saving Ray Charles for an umpires column, blind like justice.
    Mathilde, too kind. One hour writing, three obsessing over commas.
    Book, bugger footy, let’s party was the spirit of the age.
    Luke, gonna be interesting now Olympic is being redeveloped as a rectangle.
    ER, if 88A was on teev, there’d be N, S, D, L, V warning. And Adult Themes, of course.

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