[Looking back at this (its now August 2015), I couldn’t even bring myself to mention our opponent in this disgraceful showing, which was Melbourne. Melbourne!]
Around the time Barassi was lighting the cauldron at the MCG last night I started to think “oh no – this AN OCCASION. We are stuffed”.
The last big occasion game Richmond actually turned up for was in 2001. We have won the occasional Dreamtime game, OK. But so many Special Occasions have been buggered sideways by the Tigers, particularly if its a specific Richmond Special Occasion (centenary game, Tommy’s farewell last year).
I honestly feel sick to think of young Drummond copping a knee injury in such a wasted effort. I did not notice this but others have commented that only Steve Morris went over and gave him a comforting word. Parallels between footy and war are fraught but did Nathan Drummond think to himself “Who is leading us? Why is no-one reacting to the fact that our plan has failed? Where are my comrades, have I been forsaken?” It is genuinely sickening. How must it feel to be a 1st or second game player taking your cues from those around you, and of your senior teammates only Shane Edwards appears to have arrived to play football?
When it counts (which is every week, not just when horses and trumpets are involved) our team spirit is shown to be illusory. Handing out a high five when you pile on another goal against a bottom-two side is not comradeship. All the little tweets and texts and “get around him”s and the club website’s funny videos and Stevie’s horses and Griggsy’s spuds and Ivan’s mullet and Brendon’s sports admin career – is there some way it could all just be traded in for four points?
Four bloody points. Stuff redemption. Stuff narrative. Stuff the finals. Stuff the sponsors and the match day experience and honour of being chosen to participate in this very special occasion and other Craig Willis-isms.
Next week. Four points.