The View from Shepparton: Revisiting early predictions

Well, so endeth the minor round for this year.

This is how I reckoned at the beginning of the year it would end up.

“So GWS last and the Gold Coast second last at the end of the season. Followed up the ladder by Port Adelaide, Carlton, Richmond, Brisbane Lions, Collingwood ( who will rue getting rid of Mick), Melbourne,  Adelaide and Fremantle just out of the eight. North Melbourne will finish eighth followed up the ladder by Essendon, Western Bulldogs, St Kilda, Sydney, West Coast, Geelong and Hawthorn on top of the ladder at the end of the minor round”.

Can’t make up my mind if I think that this was a fair enough attempt or not I mean I had Hawthorn right but I certainly didn’t expect Adelaide to be top two nor did I expect the Pies to be top four let alone top eight.  Sydney and West Coast were reasonably close to prediction  but I was certainly wrong with St Kilda, Essendon and the Western Bulldogs and for that matter Freo who did make the finals. Impossible to predict the winners for next week this far out but for the record I think Hawthorn by 35, Sydney by 20 even though they are playing in Crowland because all year the latter have dropped really important matches, Geelong by 15 and the Perth Eagles by 65, North have had their run for this year.

My mob ended up really well cleaning up the Crows in round 21, Port in round v22 and the Dogs yesterday, and this should give them, or “us” who are supporters of the “Richmond of the north” some hope for next year. I liked the way that what is rapidly becoming the “new old” firm of Brown Black and Rich seems it be coming together. Can’t see the Bulldogs doing anything much next year on this form.

The Powerless, Tigers game was fantastic to watch particularly if you weren’t a Tiger or Power supporter. I reckon that it was of a pretty high standard throughout. Riewoldt won the Coleman. It is a long time now since he was merely “Nick’s Cousin”. Brad Ebert is such a nuggetty strong player, I enjoyed watching him play yesterday. Jay Schulz must have the Tiges wondering why they let him go. Cotchin and Tuck looked played well for Richmond. Was a very disappointing end to the season for them, particularly given that with an ounce of luck they would have been in the finals but for Port even though it wasn’t a win, would have been hugely encouraging.

If I wanted a side to get up more than  any other it was the Blues against St Kilda. Milne again was the epitome of everything I dislike about that side, arrogant and cocky but annoyingly good although yesterday wasn’t one of his better efforts. I thought it typical of Carlton’s season that Judd and Garlett went off injured. This was obviously Ratten’s fault and why he had to go. If Mick had an ounce of decency he would refuse the job on principle. He will find out the  hard way that there is no easy way back for the Blues if they cop the same rate of injuries next year.

I didn’t think that Sydney were that bad against Geelong seeing that they were playing at the Cattery but having said that I reckon that it is Geelong that all sides particularly Hawthorn would fear in the finals. Sydney have had a really good year though, a bit unlucky to strike the best sides at the end of the draw. I think that they will go on next week.

Can’t say that Adelaide aren’t trying to impress though, gave the Suns a nice sort of shellacking. I suppose had they not done so those like me who are very doubtful about their place in the firmament would have been shouting their negative views from the rooftops, as it is. if they do beat Sydney will have to start taking them seriously but sooner or later they have to leave Adelaide.

North had an unconvincing win against the Sprawlers, but perhaps I should give more credit to the latter, the Roos won’t get past next week though.

Cloke played himself into form on Saturday night, thought that Essendon were going to have a red hot go for a while but he fixed that. I must say that it is really good to see such a maligned player get back into form and a bit of me says,” Go for it Travis, you have copped more than your fair share this year. Besides you have scored 50 goals  so you certainly can play. Show the lot of them”. Essendon were pretty disappointing at game’s and for them, season’s end. The Pies might be OK yet this year if they can regain the same form collectively that they had up to a few weeks ago. Watson as ever played well for the losers, and he didn’t make the best player list but that Fasolo  bloke looks OK and it was great to see Krakouer back.

Freo beat Melbourne as was expected, I think that the latter’s efforts indicates again that there are too many teams in Victoria although in my view, to be fair, there should still only be one side in Adelaide, Brisbane and Sydney plus a development team in Tasmania. Anyway Freo won’t get past next week but they have had a pretty decent season.

Hawthorn got away from the Perth Eagles in the first quarter but after that the West Coast were OK. Franklin had to be a Hawthorn’s supporter’s dream in that thirty minutes, he is certainly magnificent to watch when on song. This was another good game to watch but I wouldn’t be totally discouraged if I were a Perth barracker.

Highlights this week. Any one of a number of our Para Olympic  athletes in their after the event comments particular if they had won a bronze or silver medal, low light, the Blade Runner not accepting defeat gracefully thus undoing years of really positive PR for his cause.

About Peter Schumacher

Wannabe footy commentator and writer, used to be a wannabe footballer

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