The View From Shepparton: Round 1

The View can await from its slumbers. Or nightmares as far as the cricket team is concerned.

On the latter, despite all of the breast beating surely it is as simple as this. The team has slipped but this was as inevitable as day follows night. So at end of the day Tait, Lee, Johnson, White, and Crazy, amongst others, weren’t up to it in the World Cup. Where were the five better players who might have been selected instead?

Now to the real issues of world shaking importance.

Thursday night. Start of the footy season. End of the cricket season as it turned out. And where was I? The family planner had scheduled a church council meeting for 24 March so I was there. Anyway the world was getting back to a sense of order. Carlton won, Richmond lost but lost convincingly enough to give their supporters hope for next week. So Richmond. Riewoldt got 6, not a bad start to the year for him.

Like most footy followers I would normally ignore the NAB Cup and Round One as being pretty much irrelevant but I have to say that Essendon are smelling like roses at the moment. I went to the Anzac Day game last year and it looked to me that the Don’s would face years in the wilderness. They were outplayed and it seemed to me intimidated by a physically bigger and better side. Look at them now. The worst thing is that all of their supporters are suddenly resurrecting themselves. Perhaps by Easter will know whether James is the new Messiah or rather like so many other coaches be consigned to a tomb. After quarter time the Dogs played like they had just come out of one.

Last year I complained about the ABC not keeping its eye on the ball when games not involving a Melbourne side were being played in Brisbane. Luckily I was in Melbourne on the weekend so out of desperation at three quarter time, by flicking around the dial I picked up the last part of the game on an unidentified commercial station. Had Brisbane hung on to win it would have been one of their great victories. I can’t see Brown coming back at all this year, let alone Staker, what a rotten start for the Lions. Getting back to the national broadcaster, I have to ask again, why can’t they at least do live crosses? Have to say that Freo would still be pretty happy, a win at the Gabba is a good way for them to start the year and they did play a desperate and committed side who only lost the lead at the last minute. I couldn’t tell of course but if the commentators were to be believed a couple of crucial umpiring decisions went against Brisbane in that frenetic last quarter. Aaron Sandilands has to be the best ruckman in the competition.

Adelaide gave the Hawks 5 goals start and still won. Very good, no doubt about that but playing at home is worth a few goals. Bad luck for the Porpoise. I viewed this match for a while, could scarcely believe the way Hawthorn failed to finish in the final quarter. Put it another way, Adelaide looked very exciting, with Dangerfield and Taylor Walker in the third quarter in particular looking really good perhaps the Crows might do something this year. Hope so. Coaches must go mad when their gun forwards don’t kick straight. Buddy is very good at this, two goals six not being the greatest return.

The Geelong St Kilda game wasn’t the best advertisement for our game most of the time but what a finish. I don’t think that Farren Ray should be hung for Selwood’s injury. They were both going for the ball and Ray seemed to turn a little at the point of contact to try lessen the severity of the collision. Geelong will be a force again this year.

The prevailing opinion on the Sydney Melbourne tied result seems to be that Sydney would have felt the waste of opportunity more than Melbourne given that they lead most of the time. I can understand that but again Melbourne were playing at home and thus should have won in a tight one. I would say that this was a pretty promising start for both teams.

Collingwood showed the gap between the top and the bottom. Can’t see the Powerless going “Top, Top, Top,” any time soon. They probably only scored those 6 goals in a row in the third quarter because Collingwood became complacent. The Melbourne Magpies really do look like a real force again and I hate to say this but I like watching them play. They do have a dream run though, they have their first interstate game in round 14. Tell me how that is fair. Tell me that the AFL is not compromised by the same thing that has made them big, that is greed for the dollar. And tell me how this scenario relates to the AFL really caring about the average rank and file supporter.

North Melbourne thus drew the short straw of having to travel to Perth. It was another close game too but another spoiled by a serious injury, Mark LeCras this time.

All in all an intriguing start to another season.

Just for the heck of it I purchased the 3D version of last year’s drawn Grand Final. On balance it is certainly worth it, it boosts the immediacy of the action but in so doing in wide angle shots in particular there is an effect in that there seems to be a reduction in the size of the players. Also the ball is harder to follow off the boot. The images are really sharp though. Would really recommend this and hope that 3D live telecasts aren’t too far away.

Peter Schumacher

About Peter Schumacher

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


  1. Peter

    Freo were certainly fortunate on Saturday. Brown’s injury was a shocker.

    Was good to get a win however, Freo of old would have possibly given up when they were 3 goals down midway through the last.

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