The Footy Almanac 2007 Round 4 – Kangaroos v Brisbane

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 www.footyalmanac.com.au. Follow the season!

 

 

 

Kangaroos versus Brisbane Lions

7.10pm, Saturday, April 21

Gold Coast Stadium, Carrara

By ANDREW STAFFORD

 

 

AS PROPHECY GOES, the Kangaroos’ banner prior to this match spoke of something larger than the base commercial reality of 10 contracted games in three years:

Our journey on the Gold Coast is about to begin As we beat the Lions and notch up a win.

 

The message was eventually borne out in a game low on skill but high on symbolism. This match is unlikely to influence the make-up of the final eight this year. Yet history will note it as a match of major significance, both for the AFL, which is desperate to establish a permanent presence in the fastest-growing region in Australia, and for the long-suffering Kangaroos, who are trapped between their good-old-North-Melbourne heritage and a support base inadequate to keep them in North Melbourne.

 

All this historic significance, it must be said, was academic from the press box. While it affords a fine view of the ground – which has come a long way from the days when it accommodated the then Brisbane Bears – the glass panels seem designed to insulate the working scribes from any suggestion of atmosphere.

 

A pity, because atmosphere played a major role in how the game was played.

As is often the case at Carrara, or the Gold Coast Stadium as it is now known, the grass was lush and a heavy dew had descended rather early in the evening. The result was effectively a game of wet-weather football, with a greasy ball and desperate players sliding everywhere.

 

Hence it was an extremely difficult game to call. I often hear fans complain that journalists must have been watching a different game. They’re right. The demands of a deadline just minutes after the final siren often mean spending more time staring at one’s computer screen than the game, glancing up occasionally to try to get a sense of what’s going on.

 

In this match the final 24-point margin flattered the Roos, who kicked two goals inside the last minute. The result hung in the balance well into the final quarter, but was eventually sealed courtesy of a couple of clutch goals to Leigh Brown, ferocious tackling from Glenn Archer, and Brisbane’s appalling inefficiency in front of goal.

 

While Leigh Brown’s three majors made him his side’s highest scorer, down the other end his namesake had a shocker of Richardsonesque proportions. Jonathan Brown kicked an uncharacteristic 1.5 for the night, most of his misses elementary, including one dribbled attempt from 40 metres when no one stood in front of him. The Lions’ inaccuracy has become a major problem; on this night it would cost them dearly.

 

The Kangaroos jumped their tardy northern neighbours early with a five-goal first term, and from there the Lions were always playing catch-up football. Much of the Roos’ drive was provided by late-blooming ruckman Hamish McIntosh. In the absence of David Hale, McIntosh played the match of his short career, outpointing both Jamie Charman and Cameron Wood in a towering effort.

 

For Brisbane, Tim Notting did more than anyone to keep his side in the game. The Lions kicked four goals in the second term to fight their way back to within three points at half-time. Notting’s 55-metre drop punt from the boundary late in the quarter was an act of rare skill and inspiration for his side on a night on which hardness and fitness would be the deciding factors.

 

In the end, the Kangaroos just wanted – needed – the game more than the Lions. Going into the game without a win, dispirited and divided, the Roos’ desperation was typified by Archer, who had looked and played like an angry man all night but saved his greatest heroics for the last quarter as he chased, tackled and smashed the opposition into eventual submission.

 

Just over 11,000 people attended the match – a sell-out in a ground that will surely have to be upgraded again for the AFL to make a long-term mark here. The Roos, with their lack of big names, dour playing style and reserved coach, are hardly suited to the flash and dazzle of the Gold Coast. But at least they notched up a win.

 

 

Kangaroos 5.4 6.6 7.13 12.15 (87)

Brisbane Lions 1.6 5.9 6.13 8.15 (63)

 

GOALS

Kangaroos: Brown 3; Wells 2; Sinclair, McIntosh, Harvey, Petrie, Harris, Jones, Thomas.
Brisbane: McGrath, Black 2; Brown, Notting, Johnson, Harding.

 

BEST

Kangaroos: McIntosh, Rawlings, Wells, Simpson, Brown, Archer.

Brisbane: Notting, Black, Brennan, McGrath, Harding, Power.

 

MILESTONE : Fixter (Brisbane) 50 games.

UMPIRES: Stevic, Kamolins, K. Nicholls.

CROWD 11,133

OUR VOTES:  McIntosh (K) 3, Archer (K) 2, Notting (B) 1.
BROWNLOW:  Simpson (K) 3, Wells (K) 2, McIntosh (K) 1.

 

 

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.

2007 Footy Almanac

 

 

Our writers are independent contributors. The opinions expressed in their articles are their own. They are not the views, nor do they reflect the views, of Malarkey Publications.

 

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