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We did not smash our way into September, we did not barnstorm … we cruised our way into September. Over the last month we collected the 4 points without too many thrills or spills. Injured players recuperated, we stayed on top of the ladder. There was no change to the season’s starting proposition – Richmond are the best team in it. This was unfortunate for journos, who have to work hard to try to spin a grander narrative.
I only made it to one roster match this year – the first. At quarter time of round one I thought, oh boy, Brendan Bolton’s boys are going to scare some good sides this year. But it was not to be – we went in radically different directions after that. That Sliding Doors bloke has probably done a really smart episode about it.
For New Richmond’s 4th final Marcus and I settled in to watch in the spare room, decorated for the occasion. Ellis dropped! Didn’t quite see that coming.
Such an intense beginning. I love footy like this, a mad scramble with intense desire for the ball trumping systems and even skills. The great thing is it is widely available in September all over the country.
Richmond were on top of the Hawks and dominated the quarter. One of our many forward thrusts fell into George’s hands and he, presented with many options, chose very well, chipping it across to Kam McIntosh. Immediately after this kick I saw Sheds coaching Dan Rioli who was fully tuned in to the voice of experience. Shortly afterwards Dan crumbed a ball at his ankles and scored an opportunistic goal.
We were killing ’em really. The one shot they earned was shanked badly by one of their leaders, Burgoyne. Our composure was superior but we gave away a couple of 50s which resulted in goals, keeping Hawthorn in the game. They started to show glimmers of fight late in the quarter.
Again it was our quarter early before Hawthorn gave themselves some hope late. Nank marked and the TV producer clearly knew what would come next although the Hawks didn’t. He dished to Shorty who missed. A fight broke out and the same TV producer decided to focus on that while the game went on in a little window. Now listen old mate. This is a final at the MCG with everything to play for. This isn’t a dead rubber at Metricon in the Sunday graveyard shift. If you must show the fight you pop THAT in the window while we watch the game.
Breust missed a soda and any small apprehension I had felt melted away. Shortly after that Dusty thumped a wonder goal from the boundary; we are doing the impossible while they are stuffing up the probable. Wonderful to see Kamdyn hit the scoreboard and he seemed to be bobbing up everywhere.
Dusty threaded the needle on the boundary to find Prestia. Mitchell seemed to have gone quiet. Our best in the first half are Dusty, Sheds, Rance, Cotchin, Kamdyn and George. Our backline was impenetrable. I called the game for us at half time.
Kamdyn in defence took another great stopping mark then set off on a brave run that came off. So many of our next tier are playing with boundless confidence. Moments later up the other end he nailed his third. Our defensive marks are winning this game. They can’t get an inside 50 for love or money. Grimes is having a great quarter as Rance did in the first. Astbury is quiet. Dion goals again – ours are just coming so easy compared to theirs. Rioli goals. We are simply too good for this mob. They fell into the top 4 and we owned top spot, and it looks like it. You’ll have to do better than this, rest-of-the-AFL.
Now Higgins goals. The Hawks have 5 majors – we are just crushing them with pressure. Edwards magnificent. It’s like we are playing a different game. Never in my life (apart from 2nd half of 2017 GF) have I felt so confident that Richmond is on its way to a flag. As Joe suggested last week, Dusty was playing August footy in August and now he’s unveiled his September footy, and its something to behold. Congratulations on your 200th, to the best player going around at the moment and probably one of the all-time greats.
Dusty the Great went quiet later in that term. Hawks inexperienced players have not stood up, some senior players have had mares (Gunston, Breust) and Clarkson has not fired a shot. Nankervis is such a key for us – thank you baby Jesus and the Blessed Oliver Plunkett for looking after him these last two years. Nank just does his job, it’s as simple as that. And we love him for it.
Sheds tries a few cute moves in this quarter that don’t come off. Riewoldt and Rance both have ankle/foot scares. At the end the vice captains come off arm in arm, sore feet forgotten for now, with a week off to sort them out. There’s Rachel Hofton in the cheer squad!
Oh we’re from Tigerland. What do you mean I have to go to work tomorrow?
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Benny Votes (double for finals)
10 Dusty – Just majestic
8 Prestia – Gained 626 metres for the night
6 McIntosh – Was everywhere, career-high 3 goals
4 Cotchin – 26 touches, was consistent all night
2 Rioli – Moments of genius
21: Grimes, Caddy
20: Astbury, Nankervis
18: Lambert, Prestia
7: Conca, McIntosh
6: Graham, Rioli
3: Lloyd, Houli, Castagna
Blair Hartley Appreciation Award:for players who have joined Richmond from another club
(Eligible 2018: Caddy, Grigg, Hampson, Houli, Nankervis, Miles, Prestia and Townsend.)
Anthony Banik Best First Year Player:for anyone who was yet to debut before round 1
(Eligible 2018: Liam Baker, Noah Balta, Callum Coleman-Jones, Ryan Garthwaite, Jack Higgins, Ben Miller, Patrick Naish)
Joel Bowden’s Golden Left Boot:for left footers
(Eligible 2018: Chol, Corey Ellis, Grigg, Nankervis and Houli).
Greg Tivendale Rookie List Medal:
upgraded from the rookie list during the current season
Potentially eligible 2018: Baker, Chol, Eggmolesse-Smith, Moore, Stengle
No votes yet.
Maurice Rioli Grip of Death Trophy:
For the Tiges top tackler