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Much of the blame for our 49-point loss on Saturday can be sheeted home to me. Every time I checked the score on the radio as we drove to Warragul the Giants kicked a goal. Simple cause and effect.
I spent the day constructively. I have fallen in love with painting and on the weekend I finished a job that took all of my weekends since well before the season started. I have been at it well before the Coodabeens are on at ten and, other things permitting, have been at it well into the evening. And after battling with what’s left of my brain all week against bureaucratic brick walls painting is pleasure. Clear the room, clean, fill gaps, sand, clean once more, undercoat, top-coat and top-coat once more. Move to the next room and repeat.
I have fixed sash windows, one of humanity’s marvels, but a bugger to paint. One day, I promise myself, I will take a sash window to pieces, replace all the rotten bits with good timber, put it all back together, paint the pieces and re-assemble it. I’m naturally handy, so being able to do such tasks gives me much pleasure.
The perceptive reader will have noticed how little I have mentioned the footy. That’s because I didn’t go, couldn’t watch it on telly and, as I said before, every time I checked the score on the radio the Giants got a goal.
Our back-line has dissolved. Rance out for the year in round one. Houli out too, a huge loss. Grimes out concussed, apparently, and suspended, deservedly. Suddenly Richmond players have discovered their elbows like small babies discovering the wonders of their fingers. Dusty went for someone with the raised elbow, like Grimes did. Damn lucky to have his sentence reduced to a week. In my book any player raising the elbow would get two weeks, no matter how much they missed by. Any contact with the head would be four weeks plus. It’s a good thing, sometimes, that I don’t write the rules.
Because it was Dusty who made the snorting gesture and a Giants’ player who was on the receiving end, I was reluctant to condemn him for it. It might be considered funny, in some contexts. But then I thought, what if the other player had a drinking problem and Dusty made a gesture to that effect? And what if it was a Giants’ player making this drinking gesture toward one of our boys? At times I can be a mad sectarian Tiger and at other times I can’t.
Jayden Short dislocated his elbow in the first quarter and will miss about eight weeks. And Cotch will miss a few with a hammy. It’s a great time to be a reserves player at Richmond, plenty of opportunities for the young fellers to step up.
Final score: Giants 19.11.125 Richmond 10.16.76
We are moving on the weekend and all the papers have been thrown out. I don’t know who our best players were. Rioli took a battering early in the match but kept playing, as he does. Lynch did well and will be a crucial part of our team when we come good in the second half of the year. And before then, too.
Our season is in a bit of trouble. But all is not lost yet. If we can get a win here and there with a patched-up team and hit some good form in the second half of the year we’ll do all right.
And in good news for Richmond, Katie Brennan signed for the Richmond Women’s team, who, inexplicably, won’t play their first game until 2020. But better late than never.
Key stats from this game (and others)
Match attendance: 12,697
AFLW Grand Final attendance: 53,034
Amount of money and in-kind support the AFL has given to GWS since their foundation: a bloody truck-load
Amount of money the AFL has given to the AFLW: scraps from the table, really.