The View from Shepparton – Round 5

What a round we have just had, again a fantastic advertisement for our code.

Unfortunately I, as is, and ever has been, barracked for the wrong side and was on the receiving end of the the Tomahawk’s 6 straight goals. Get that, Buddy et al!!! 6 STRAIGHT GOALS IN ATROCIOUS CONDITIONS.

It was bad luck for Simon Black in his 300th. It was a fine away win for the Cats but I am reluctant to whinge too much about the Lions’ performance given the conditions. Nevertheless they hadn’t scored a goal until well into the the third quarter and I am starting to think that a view that I formed years ago is being confirmed, that is supporting this team is an act of the heart, not the head. A bit like following Richmond, say, except that the agony hasn’t been as protracted, yet.

What I get out of this game in one way is coach Chris Scott’s take on Selwood responding to ongoing niggling.

“He’s been on the front foot with me and rest of the team this week, in that he put himself in a vulnerable position with the Match Review Panel and was fortunate to get away with it,” Scott said at Simonds Stadium on Tuesday morning.

“He understands he’s very much in control of his own actions””.

I reckon that though this is a fair and correct take, you would have to be a super human not to get “sucked in” by such tactics, week in week out and it is a shame that once a player attracts this attention and reacts at all he will be the  target for even more tactics of this nature and is as such seen to be the “weak” party. In a parallel universe the best players would be respected for their skills, not punished for them and those standing them would attempt to match it on the basis of that respect.

Richmond came oh so close to rolling the  Eagles and whilst by default my barracking stance is one of “Any team but Victorian” (ABV) I found myself barracking for the Tiges in that last quarter, but once again, missing gettable shots particularly when the pressure is on is absolutely the kiss of death and what about that Jack Riewoldt short pass? Bet he wishes that he could have that moment back. Daniel Kerr was magnificent the way he burrowed into packs and either got the ball or held up the opposition.  Which ever way you look at  at though it was still an away win for the Eagles.

Sydney beat Hawthorn. I wasn’t expecting that, I had imagined that the star-studded Hawks would win comparatively easily but Buddy for example was kept quiet, although Roughead tried to fill the void with his five goals. Supremely ironic that Josh Kennedy played so well against the side he wasn’t good enough to get into. Love it when that happens. Sydney has a centreline, tend to forget that when assessing why they are 5 zip up. The Hawks are now down tw- three but their draw has been tough. Actually, to be honest I gave up on this game at half time with the Hawks 20 points up, thinking it would be a one way slide to oblivion for the Swans for the rest of the game. Another great judgment call!

This was another great Showdown, particularly seeing that the Crows got up. There is no doubting the intensity of these games  but from the winners’ view point it was a worry that Port had the skill, the guts to get back in the third quarter. Just as well they had Dangerfield, he is a really good player now. I really hope that Adelaide beats Sydney next week, South Australian football needs it, but somehow I doubt that the Crows are any where near good enough away. Adelaide is in the four. Make the most of it Crows supporters, it won’t last.

Melbourne had a red hot go against the  Saints but as is ever the case, just ask Richmond or Port Adelaide, an honourable loss gets no points on the board.

Gold Coast  must have given North Melbourne a hell of a fright in that first half, not bad with Ablett and Rischitelli out  but after that it wasn’t a contest really. This was a pretty fair effort given North’s form so far this year.

Carlton’s win against Freo was OK, thought that they would get up but Freo is a good side these days, too. They weren’t brushed aside in that last quarter either.

GWS were OK in the first quarter against the Bulldogs, after that, nothing. Got to expect it I suppose.

Highlight: Hawkins’ 6 goals straight. Lowlight, listening to the ABC news at 3am on Sunday, NRL results given but no AFL. And there was a murmur in “The Age” against Channel Seven’s coverage, well at least they recognise the sport! And why are the ABC people in the Sydney weekend newsroom scripted to refer to goals as “majors” in any accidental reference to the AFL?

About Peter Schumacher

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


  1. Peter,
    You and I shared the telecast of the Hawthorn-Sydney match. I was out and returned home at half-time, so watched the Swans blistering 2nd half. We could perhaps do a joint match review.

  2. Adam Muyt says

    “…supporting this team is an act of the heart, not the head. A bit like following Richmond.”

    Well, most supporting is about heart not head isn’t it? As for like Richmond…well, we aren’t bitter and twisted enough for that comparison, just lost Royboys who take solace in the fact that we know how to do ‘miserable on-field efforts’ with the right attitude. Mind you, I’d like a new coach, a couple of key defenders, a bit of grunt and toughness all round and some sense that we can make the finals within the next decade. Other than that, footy life’s pretty good!

  3. I think we should have a set formal criteria for what constitutes an honourable loss and 1 premiership point should be awarded.

    Richmond would therefore have had 2 from the games against the Cats and Weagles.

    Melbourne would possibly have had one against St Kilda, but the Hawks wouldn’t have against their three victors this year.

    It should be a factor of sheer sympathy, coupled with some rules and a formula. Maybe if you are expected to be flogged and come close, or give a good account of yourself, or the coulda/shoulda rule.

    Better performing teams who lose a close one don’t count (Anzac Day Bombers) and GWS being beaten by less than 10 goals don’t either.

    But interstate horror trips that turn out to be closer than you think should get a go.

    Or is this just the Tiger in me looking for a jump from 9th to 8th made easier.

  4. Peter Schumacher says

    Yeah it’s a bit hard to admit that emotion, “God, another interstate team being belted”, rather than a love for the game of AFL irrespective of the teams playing or the state of the game got the better of me. And hard though it is to admit, it won’t be the last time either. Certainly my loss this time!

  5. Peter Schumacher says

    Supporting a losing footy team is indeed a matter of the heart, very easy for me for the period 2001-3. but the losing sequence ever since makes me realise how great that team was and how lucky I was to be a Lions supporter.

    I should have appreciated it too as I was a Brisbane Bears man in the darkest days. I guess that’s why whilst I share your thoughts about changing the coach and so on, generally I am still prepared to cut Michael Voss some slack.

  6. Peter Schumacher says

    I really do think that soccer has something in weighting the results for away games but the problem is, say for example in Adelaide, when Port play Adelaide, which is the away team?

  7. “Supremely ironic that Josh Kennedy played so well against the side he wasn’t good enough to get into. Love it when that happens.”

    I love it as well, unfortunately there are too many teams around with too many Cats discards for my liking. Perhaps the fish John West rejects…

    What about dishonourable losses, could a team lose more than four points?

    What about rather than extra points for honour we have an honour ladder where teams play an honourable losers finals series. Perhaps they could play for the Matthew Richardson cup with the best on ground getting the Robert Flower medal?

    I reckon we’re onto something here. Webmasters begin a new thread and lets get the discussion under way. Almanackers may need hold a phantom finals series first time ’round, bt everyone will be ready for next year.

  8. Fine thoughts Hamish, although you will probably end up with teams throwing games to play off for the Richo Cup…

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