As the broadcast resumes, we are looking at the end Geelong was attacking in the previous quarter. “That’s the Geelong forward end… … … in fact the Richmond forward end”. Thanks BT. We’d seen Richmond running towards it so probably no need to say anything eh?
Dave Astbury flaps at the ball like an outwitted goalkeeper and Ablett gets away, only to be run down by Pickett. Marlion Pickett is in everything tonight.
Rohan stops Prestia and gets a HTB free. Dangerfield is isolated on Cotchin and as Rohan’s kick comes in Cotch gives away scragging free. Dangerfield kicks the goal. 13 – 20. Geelong pressure is up and we have not come out with a good plan B. Ablett gives Dangerfield the rare one-handed high five.
Next bounce Pickett nearly cleans up Graham then seconds later Simpson’s perfect kick for Hawkins is ruined (bravely) by Dalhaus. Duncan is really generating heaps for Geelong. We’ve had some luck with the umpires eg Nank marks a touched ball right in front of Geelong’s goal and essentially rolls in a ball like a slater.Embed from Getty Images
Shane Edwards creates a scoring opportunity. His wide kick out of the backline sets up for Shai to beat Blicavs in a sprint, then it goes via Kam, then Prestia, Dusty (all under kilopascals of pressure), back to Edwards but his final kick is just too deep for Jack and Tom Lynch.
Astbury is getting clearly beaten while Grimes is just anonymous – he and Rohan are mostly cancelling each other out. Dangerfield has another shot (after a mark that was actually touched by Broad) but he hits it all wrong.
Stewart attacks a ball on the edge of Geelong’s 50 and kicks it high for Rohan. Grimes runs him under it. Pickett and Broad tidy up but Broad under pressure hooks the ball back into danger territory, where it falls in the lap of stationary Gryan Miers. Gryan Miers ignores traffic cop Gary Rohan, decides to play on and kicks a behind from 20 out on a 45° angle. He tucks his ridiculous dreads behind his ears.
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We are under a lot of duress now but the Cats are failing to turn the screw when the opportunity is there. Fragile. Harry Taylor gets a push, adds some mayo to it and dives into the legs of Graham who knees him in the head for his trouble. Tuohy kicks another point. After 8 minutes of complete domination their lead is only 9 points. Rioli is trying to get into the game with some 2nd-in tough-guy efforts. Dahlhaus sets up a high kick to the square to be punched through for another behind, 13-23.
Pickett makes a great tackle on Bews but then plays on from the free and handpasses it straight back to him. He is a big part of keeping us in this game but his mistakes are always made on centre stage.
Balta in the back pocket kicks with his scything style straight to Selwood. He slows play down, but still picks out Miers who was unmarked for ages. Miers gets Menegola, who finally kicks them another major. 13-29. It’s technically their 4th in a row but they actually have zero momentum.
Great little pass from Ablett to Selwood who pumps it down to Hawkins. Tom kicks the goal and now there’s some momentum. 13-35. “They’re going to be hard to catch” says Bruce. I’m worrying not so much about the margin but now Hawkins is up, and we are very flat, making unforced errors and letting loose men drift away. For the first time I can visualise us losing this.Embed from Getty Images
We move it slowly after a series of bounces. A hope kick comes out of Geelong’s defence to Short, who bangs it back in and finds Shai. His set shot misses, he got too close to the mark. Balta marks the kickout, but his kick is too cute and gives Kam no chance.
Henry kicks OOF on the other side. Baker takes the kick and goes deep to the big pack. Lynch and Riewoldt have been absent from the screen all night. Now Lynch rises above the pack and smacks the sherrin into the arms of Dusty for his first touch of the term. He runs across the goalface while holding Kolodjashnij at bay and hooks the ball through the middle, giving us a lifeline for half time. 20-35.
With 55 secs left theres another throw-in in our forward pocket. Blicavs collects the tap and is caught in a vice by a reawakened Dusty, who flips it out of his hands. That’s probably not a free. Dusty lines up, gets some advice from Riewoldt which he ignores, and kicks the worst banana you’ll see. In lawn bowls you’d call it wrong bias.
The siren goes as we are hunting hard another goal. Geelong’s brief spell of momentum is dead. A half of wonderful intense and skilful footy has set the stage for the main event – some rich kids with colourful hair playing derivative rock n roll. We mute the TV and go to work on the saveloys.