The Footy Almanac 2007 Round 11 – Fremantle v Richmond: Tigers gallant in a tight defeat

The first printed edition of The Footy Almanac came out in 2007, before we had a website. In the absence of a real 2020 season, we will be publishing the 2007 pieces for the first time ever on Follow the season!



Fremantle versus Richmond

2.40pm, Sunday, June 10

Subiaco Oval, Perth



THE TALK AROUND TOWN – well, on talkback radio anyway – leading up to this game between under-performing Fremantle and bottom-of-the-table Richmond was that the Dockers had to win and win well. The proposition was, as Chris Connolly would say, disrespectful to the Tigers. It was silly, too – Richmond had been in pretty good form and could have, save for the odd hand in the back or misdirected kick, won their previous three games.


Richmond’s afternoon began with an in-the-back free to them and long goal from Richard Tambling which lifted their confidence. Like others before them, they were out to run the Dockers off their feet, and they had the players to do it. After Des Headland had levelled the score, the Tigers took complete control. They couldn’t win the ruck knocks but did win the ball away from stoppages. Brett Deledio, Nathan Foley and Jake King showed great dash. There was excitement on the bench when Terry Wallace and his band of coaches arrived boundary-side well before the siren sounded for quarter-time. They were bursting to get onto the ground and talk to the players. Some of them arrived in time to see Chris Newman’s incredible torpedo punt goal from a good 70 metres. Newman was presented with this unlikely scoring opportunity courtesy of some off-the-ball silliness from Dean Solomon that provided not only a free kick, but a 50-metre penalty.


Despite the advantage the Tigers enjoyed in winning the ball, Fremantle’s back line was holding up pretty well – Roger Hayden was in fine form, Luke McPharlin had Matthew Richardson under control, and Antoni Grover was both solid and dashing. Richmond’s defence held control early but the situation seemed tenuous and during the second quarter Fremantle began their first serious moves. Matthew Pavlich got on top and the midfield began to at least get their share of the opportunities afforded by ruckmen Aaron Sandilands and Robert Warnock.


Fremantle hit the front for the first time 25 minutes into the third quarter after some devastating work by Headland, who kicked three goals for the term. Headland is an unusual small forward because he’s not small at all. His strength in the air and cleverness at ground level had the Tigers in a spin. By the last break the Dockers were a point in front and on the road to victory.


I don’t want to appear disrespectful to Richmond but it is worth mentioning their gallantry as Fremantle, led by a rampaging Pavlich, took control. The Dockers looked like running away to a big win – they kicked inspirational goals and the crowd was roaring and chanting, but the Tigers simply kept running and kicking goals. The teams kicked 13 between them in the last quarter.


The spirit of the Richmond players was matched by the chaos on the bench. Messages were often yelled from one of four people on the bench (including the two runners) and players regularly ran onto the ground still frantically asking where they were playing and who they were on.


In the end Fremantle won the game but still gave no inkling as to where they’re headed in 2007. Meanwhile those who took bets about Richmond not winning in 2007 should be nervous – and those who bet on footy deserve to be nervous.



Fremantle  1.3 4.8 10.10 18.15 (123)

Richmond  4.5 6.9 10.9 15.12 (102)



Fremantle: Headland 5, Pavlich 3, Peake, Tarrant 2, Grover, Mundy, Black, Thornton, Warnock, Ibbotson.

Richmond: Tambling, Pettifer 3, Richardson, Edwards 2, Deledio, Newman, Hyde, Kingsley, Howat.



Fremantle: Pavlich, Hayden, Bell, Headland, J. Carr, Johnson.

Richmond: Deledio, Foley, Raines, Tambling, Polak, Tuck.



Newman (Richmond) 100 games.



Ibbotson (Fremantle).



Kamolins, Ellis, Avon.



Pavlich (F) 3, Deledio (R) 2, Hayden (F) 1.



Headland (F) 3, Pavlich (F) 2, Bell (F) 1.






For more Round by Round reports of the 2007 season click HERE


Printed copies of The Footy Almanac 2007 can be purchased here.


2007 Footy Almanac

Leave a Comment