VAFA Premier C – The CYs’ Preview: Round 1

Great Expectations


My team North Melbourne plays at the MCG about as regularly as Donald Trump admits he is in the wrong. But this coming Saturday afternoon, the Kangaroos will make a rare foray onto that field of dreams. As an MCC member, the temptation to trek in to Jolimont and watch my team while quaffing full-strength beer and eating bagels is very real. However, as the years have rolled on, the appeal of attending an AFL match has dulled – and continues to do so. And, before you ask, this has nothing to do with North Melbourne’s fortunes.


And anyway, how could I possibly miss the opening round of the VAFA season – particularly when my club Williamstown CYMS is playing at home? Give me local footy!


There is something about Round 1: the players are at their fittest with hardly a niggle to be felt, eager to get into it after a long pre-season. There are elements of mystery, for no-one can say for certain just how the season will unfold. There are multiple layers of hope and anticipation. How good are the other teams? Have they trained as hard as us? Have they prepared as well? Will we be more fortunate with injuries this season? Can we keep our best cattle on the park? On Saturday at 4:45pm, some of these questions and more will have been answered, but many queries will still be floating through the salty seaside air; more answers will be known in due course.


Season 2018 looms as one of great opportunity for the CYs, but with that comes great expectations: from teammates, coaches, volunteers, members and supporters. The numbers on the track have been outstanding, the practice matches valuable as hit-outs. So it is a no-brainer that I will be there – with plenty of expectation.


On Saturday, I will be in a Members’ area of a different kind. Standing next to a squat brick pavilion, hoping that the weather is kind. These members can be hostile toward opposition players and umpires alike, but are generally accepting of the times when an opponent has been too good on the day. There will be mates and acquaintances, blokes I played footy with, mums and dads whose sons are lacing up their boots, and local kids who will one day pull on the blue and gold guernsey. The comfort of familiar faces, the magnificent green grass of home, the deep feeling of desire that we CYs supporters will always harbor to put the old boys’ teams back in their place.


In the meantime, I will be checking for score updates from the MCG, whilst not holding my breath waiting for Trump to admit to having made a mistake. I am a realist: I’m not expecting North Melbourne to win, but the expectations on the CYs are something entirely different altogether.


About Darren Dawson

Always North.


  1. Being such a nice day, I think i will ride my bike down to Fearon & have a look at this game, who is the opposition Smokie?

  2. Hi Smokie,
    Nice piece.
    I’m interested in what has lead to your decline in interest in the AFL and your preference for Williamstown CYMS. Is it partly related to North’s home being at Docklands, as opposed to Williamstown’s at Fearon? Or, perhaps the saturation of gambling advertisements?
    I wonder if our personal connection, involvement and contribution in local, amateur footy clubs make them harder to ‘leave’ than clubs that play in the AFL.
    Looking forward to hearing more about Williamstown CYMS.

  3. Phil Hill says

    Look forward to seeing out the BSO this year

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