The Parade College Writing Workshop – Jonah Fisher: Anzac Day 2019



By Jonah Fisher


It was the 25th of April 2019, and the long-lasting rivalry of Collingwood and Essendon would face off for another ANZAC Day match. It was expected to be a blockbuster match and proved to do so. My Nanna, two of my aunties and I arrived at the game 50 minutes before the first bounce. We all took this time to indulge ourselves in the pre-game entertainment that the MCG had to offer us. I felt so special to be a part of something like this. I could feel the tension of the MCG building up through the floor.


The time came for the players to run out through the banners and onto the field. After they did their warm-up they then both formed two neat lines awaiting the one minute of silence. The whole precinct fell silent; not even the birds on the roof let out a squeak. After the silence broke there was a massive roar from the crowd and the players. Again there was a massive buzz through the floor of the MCG. I was really anxious, but I was excited at the same time to see what this awesome game had in store for my family and me.


The siren sounded to start the first quarter and there was another roar from the crowd. The umpire blew his whistle and slammed the ball into the floor, and up went the two ruckmen from both teams. Collingwood got the better of Essendon, kicking four goals to Essendon’s one. The second quarter was definitely more interesting than the second, with Essendon slowly clawing their way back into the game. Joe Daniher’s goal from beyond the 50-metre line gave Essendon all the momentum they possibly needed heading into the third quarter. Then came the end to the second term which brought the half time entertainment. This was a delightful performance from the band Birds of Tokyo. I was interested as I listen to some of their music in my free time. After the performance I decided to go grab myself something to eat, which turned out to be some chicken and chips along with a bottle of coke. I returned to my seat and sat down to enjoy my meal before the third quarter started.


The third quarter was very energetic with Essendon winning the quarter scoreboard-wise. This then led to a ripper of a fourth quarter. I remember my auntie screaming when one of our players was running down the sideline with the ball all by himself. He ended up assisting the goal that was kicked by Jake Stringer. The end of the game was the most intense I have ever experienced going to a footy match – it seemed like with every disposal of the ball the crowd would scream and shout at the umpires even though the disposals were all clean, despite maybe one or two.


It got to the final two minutes when the atmosphere was just electric. When the ball was inside the 50 of both teams their cheer squads and supporters were going absolutely crazy. 30 seconds were left and my ears were going deaf – the ball got to Essendon’s forward fifty and the crowd was going off their heads. It was 74 to 69 at the time, Collingwood’s way.


Everyone was tired, which may have led to a few mishaps on the field. I can’t remember who was kicking it inside the 50 but he took the risky option and it didn’t pay off. A Collingwood player got possession and ran off down the sideline, and just like that, four quarters of brilliant footy came to an end and all the hard work just didn’t pay off. Collingwood got the better of Essendon by five points, I sat back in my seat feeling a range of emotions. Defeat, because I came to watch Essendon play so well just to lose. Thrill, because I just watched the best game I’ve so far watched in my life, and fear, because of all the banter I was going cop from my mates at school.


It came to when the best on ground medal was to be presented. When the announcer said, “Scott Pendlebury”, the crowd instantly erupted into boos and cheers. I did not partake in this as the best player rightfully earned his medal for best on ground and he shouldn’t be booed for his actions. Then when the coach Nathan Buckley came on, his first words were, “Shame on anyone who booed a champion.” That instantly shut up the disrespectful folks in the crowd. The train ride home was lacking happiness from Essendon supporters, but all the Collingwood supporters seemed very happy because they had just won the blockbuster match of the season. I then thought to myself, “We will get ’em next year.”



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  1. Colin Ritchie says

    Enjoyed your story Jonah. A cracking game but a disappointing result for Bomber supporters! I was in New Orleans at the time and was trying to keep up with the scores which was difficult. Maybe this year!

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