The season of a Saints tragic (so far): Rounds 4 and 5

Ross Who?

You’d have to live on Mars not to have read any papers, listened to any radio stations or watched any football TV over the last week before the Fremantle-St Kilda game.  What extraordinary hype, what a build up to what was essentially Round 4 football in the 2012 season.  It was all hot air and opinions. Pot stirring.  Heightened gossip mongering. A great Barnum and Bailey circus event with a little Comedy Festival thrown in.

Saints supporters weren’t losing sleep over whether to boo or not to boo Ross Lyon.  But they seemed to have more feeling for Zac Dawson on the night.  Sainters just wanted to win.

I wasn’t heartbroken about losing Ross Lyon, I was more worried about whether our boys were OK with it after a horror season, because he had been THEIR coach, mentor, friend. It affected the Club and the players and assistants and organisers on a daily basis, not the average Jo-ess like me.  And for most of the Saints supporters I’ve written to or talked to, we are very happy with the change of coaches and the new forward pressure that the Saints are working towards.  You know the common phrase we are all hearing, “still a work in progress”, the Saints are still working towards Scott Watters’ visions for this club, for now and in the future. We’re all too busy “Being the Future” to be much bothered by our recent past.  We had to get good at that after the horror of the last few years, and those awful moments far outweighed the significance of Ross Lyon essentially looking after his future and his family’s future.  Moreoever, if the St Kilda establishment had REALLY wanted him, he would have been stitched up early in the season, contracts signed and deals done.  In psychotherapy, we talk a lot about ambivalence, that lovely mixture of feelings like love and hate, life and death, having a mixed, complex response to issues which is part of what makes us humans tick. The St Kilda establishment were ambivalent to say the least, and so were the fans on hearing the news.

Of course, the actual unfolding of events was like an explosion of shock and awe, it all happened so quickly.  Hospital visits to the Captain after an operation.  Hurried goodbyes. Breaking news on the Marngrook Footy Show, and then The Footy Show.  Press, TV, newspapers and radio. Did you hear the news?

So preparation and getting to the game between St Kilda and Fremantle on Friday night was more usual than unusual.  It was a home game, in our usual seats, we were back for our second home game and happy to be so.  We were early so we could suck in the excitement.  Rachel and her Fremantle work colleague had tickets the other side of the ground.  Rina, Amanda, Bob, Gary and I were in our seats.  Life was as it should be.  DD and I were meeting at half time.  We are only two blocks away, but we haven’t bumped into each other yet since meeting two years ago at the Almanac Grand Final lunch.  Footy’s back.  We were on a Friday night.  There was excitement and anticipation and hunger to see what would unfold.

And unfold it did. A close first two quarters and then better quarters from Fremantle and it was all done.  Ross Lyon helped Fremantle break the long haul voodoo, some got to boo Ross Lyon and, more eagerly, Zac Dawson, and the game was close but they got the gong and the song and the points and got to travel home happy.  We got to laugh as they lost this week, playing that ugly Ross Lyon defensive jumble of the game.  Fremantle and Ross, they can have each other. I am left contemplating that I am more bitter than I thought.

Round 5:  Almost got by Demons

This weekend was a weekend of contrasts.  A weekend of superhero movies.  My eldest was preparing to take me to see “The Avengers” in 3D on Sunday, and to understand this movie, it helped to watch “Iron Man 1”, “Iron Man 2” and “Thor”.  So we had a marathon on Friday and madly watched them all.  And on Sunday, we saw all the superheros work together to overcome the foe, the evil invaders from out there.  They all worked together, Iron Man, Captain America, the lovely Hulk (I know exactly how he feels, just ask my kids, kind and thoughtful one minute, a raving monster if riled). There was the sexy Thor and the gymnastic Black Widow and straight arrowed Hawkeye.  They fought amongst themselves to develop the story line, and then worked together as a team to overcome evil and other un-earthly threats.  Reminded me of being at the footy really.

On a colder, wet and rainy Saturday night, the Demons (they were the other-world enemy for the night) seemed to have found their way, unfortunately it was what Scotty Watters predicted in his pre-match interviews.  Don’t underestimate Melbourne, he said, they had a good list and were out to prove something. For three quarters, it was hand to hand, man to man, combat.  Our stars were kept quiet, theirs seemed to be running around and feeling way too confident and free.  Once again, I wondered about our “home” at Etihad and our wish for a home at the MCG so it wouldn’t feel so big and “weathery” and strange to be there, and perhaps we’d get used to winning there as well.  We are still haunted by all our MCG losses, especially “those that cannot be named”. St Kilda seem to have trouble gathering themselves at those vital moments, and regrouping and saying to each other and themselves, it’s ours (game, premiership cup etc) and just snatching it from the evil doers in the other colours (like Cats or Magpies) who have no trouble finding that next notch up of fighting.

In the last quarter of Saturday night, St Kilda stepped up a rung of effort and kept the Demons scoreless.  Suddenly, we were playing as we had expected from the beginning.  Why do they have to test their supporters’ hearts and souls every single bloody game.  Just come out and smash them.

Now we wait to see ourselves at the G once again, against the Hawks.  We have a tough run now with Carlton, West Coast, Swans (the quiet achievers) and Richmond who are improving.  Our boys have their work cut out for them. And we have a ride ahead of us.  Go Saints.


About Yvette Wroby

Yvette Wroby writes, cartoons, paints through life and gets most pleasure when it's about football, and more specifically the Saints. Believes in following dreams and having a go.


  1. Stephanie Holt says

    Great reports Yvette. So what movies do you recommend for the Saints/Hawks curtain-raiser?

  2. I’m now thinking of them as the Voldemort games…

Leave a Comment