The Footy Almanac 2007 Round 2 – Richmond v Sydney

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!





Richmond v Sydney

2:10pm, Saturday April 7



by Howard Kimber



IT’S EASTER SATURDAY, A TIME FOR REFLECTION, and this is exactly what I’m doing as I drive the two hours from the in-laws’ holiday house on Victoria’s west coast, back to the ‘G to watch the Tigers take on the Swans. I’m reflecting mainly on the 118-point whipping my boys suffered at the hands of Sydney last year – a walloping of biblical proportions.


The beauty of supporting the Tigers over the last 25 years is that we’ve built up defence mechanisms to deal with such beatings. The basic reaction is to lower expectations, and so it is that I walk into the Richmond reserved area convinced that losing by anything less than 12 goals is as good as a victory. I look around and see the Stepford smiles of my fellow members – I am safe within my womb.


The match starts well enough. Greg Tivendale kicks a goal in the first two minutes and then, as if a six-point lead is enough to carry us through the four quarters, the game turns into such a flood that I’m half-expecting to see Noah on the wing.


Ten minutes pass before Barry Hall kicks the next goal, and then it seems like the gates are open as Michael O’Loughlin adds a couple and Peter Everitt another. The last part of the term is all Sydney, and they go to the break with a 17-point advantage. I can’t help but feel that the margin would be greater if not for the? 36 players in the Swans’ forward half, and the fact that their match-winning co-captain Barry Hall has hurt his knee in an awkward marking contest with Darren Gaspar.


A lot of people will tell you that The Gas has got very little to offer these days, but watching the Hall injury on the big screen is a lesson for all young players in how to use limited bodyweight and minimal movement to create maximum damage, while looking as if you have eyes on nothing but the ball.


Hall starts the second quarter in the goalsquare, knee bandaged, but otherwise looking fit. Before long he’s marked 40 out, but fails to kick the distance – not a good sign for the big man. After hobbling around, he leaves the ground. Tiger hopes lift. They soon drop again when Malceski kicks a goal, the Swans’ fifth in a row.


Well, at least the result seems beyond question. The only concern now is whether the margin will stay within 12 goals. After some quick recalculations and justifications, I decide that anything under 100 points would be acceptable. Ah, the Tiger fans’ mind – such a pliable thing!


But of course my emotions are not mine to manipulate. No, they belong to the spiteful football gods. Richmond kick three of the next four goals, and then Joel Bowden adds another after the half-time siren. Suddenly we’re only 10 points down, and I spend the long break listening to the pessimistic little devil on my left shoulder trade insults and arguments with the optimistic devil on my right.


A goal to Chris Hyde early in the third quarter narrows the gap to less than a goal. But the Swans manage to kick another three, including an absolute ripper from one end of the ground to the other, finished by Amon Buchanan. Sydney are starting to play the footy that got them to the last two Grand Finals, a place we won’t be for a few years yet.


But then we fight back. We kick three of the next four goals, then cap it off with another after the siren. This time, though, it’s Richo. Kicking from outside the fifty. On the boundary. Wrong side for a right-footer. For most players, this is a one-in-a-hundred kick, but for Richo it’s money for jam. It’s when he’s 10 metres out at the top of the square that we all start to fret.?A four-point deficit at three-quarter time becomes a one-point lead when


Nathan Foley kicks his second. The optimistic devil is dancing like a mad thing, laughing his little red head off, but his pessimistic partner doesn’t concede. He’s seen this movie before, and so it goes that Tim Schmidt gets the Swans back in front at the 15-minute mark. Tadgh Kennelly and Darren Jolly put the result beyond doubt.


For the first part of the two-hour drive back down to the beach I’m happy with the result. Contented with the effort. But then I go through the usual stages: missed opportunity, lost chance for respect, and this will cost us come September. Finally I decide that the kids played well and no one got injured.


As I get out of the car my neck hurts, not from the drive, not from the footy talkback on the radio, but from being prodded for two hours straight, just under the ears, by a couple of tiny pitchforks.




RICHMOND    1.1     5.2    10.3    11.6 (72)

SYDNEY          4.0     6.6     10.7      13.10 (88)



Richmond: Hyde, Richardson, Schultz, Tambling 2, J. Bowden, Foley, Tivendale

Sydney: Everitt, Malceski, O’Loughlin 2, Hall, C. Bolton, Buchanan, Jolly, Kennelly, O’Keefe, Schmidt



Richmond: Deledio, Tivendale, Gaspar, Hyde

Sydney: C. Bolton, Malceski, Everitt, Kennelly


Crowd: 37,985




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


If you want a printed copy of the 2007 edition of the Footy Almanac, they can be purchased HERE.




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  1. I remember this game, well. Thanks for bringing back the memories!

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