I spent most of the 90s living overseas – first in Scotland and then Germany. Apparently, the Kangas were good during this period and a bloke called Duck dominated. I didn’t see any of this. My only thoughts regarding North are, first: my Dad follows them – he’s originally from NSW and chose North based on the fact his Dad played League for Canterbury Bankstown, who are also blue and white, second: I can’t remember North ever being any good and third: I never, ever tip North correctly – they win when they should lose and lose when they should win. They were supposed to lose to Richmond, and as a result, I was worried.
The first 10 minutes of the first quarter had me concerned – we were overusing the ball and turning it over with monotonous regularity. While I am big fan of ‘flair’, sometimes the basics work, especially early when the other mob is ‘up for the contest’™. Grimes starts very well and his bullet pass to George brings a big grin to my dial. Man-mountain Majak Daw’s tackle attempt is shrugged off by Towna despite the fact Daw is approximately 37 times his size. Daw is the sort of player who must frustrate the bejesus out of supporters – he has all the physical attributes to dominate footy but always seems to be a half-step behind the play. I really hope he works it out…just not today. Despite our poor use of the pill, we got inside 50 a lot – but don’t capitalise. North were a model of efficiency – by my count they got inside our defensive 50 twice and had kicked 2 straight. We had kicked 3.4.
Quarter-time notes: Dusty unsighted, Cotch starting to get hot, Caddy kicks goals, we need to tighten up on Ben Brown, Cunnington is a machine.
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Repeat efforts from Cotch (this is standard) leads to Dusty getting the ball, quick flick back to the skipper then onto Lambert – GOAL!!! Best passage of play by a mile and our mid-size speedsters make North’s tall defence look cumbersome. 4.4 to 2.0 – we are starting to get reward for effort and have some breathing space. Simpkin snaps – goal. Atley snaps – goal. 4.4 to 4.0 Breathing space gone. North have 4.0 from 4 shots on goal ffs… Our pressure finally starts to reap rewards: Titch shimmy, onto Cotch, onto Lambert – GOAL!, Caddy takes advantage of a dubious, um, advantage call – GOAL! Jack, set shot from 45 – GOAL! 7.4 to 4.0 North finally miss and each team kicks another goal (Jack) to make the half-time score 8.4.52 to 5.2.32
Half-time notes: Cotch is on fire, ditto Cunnington, Brown marking on the wing – win for us, we have fluffed a few chances through being unselfish – sometimes Route 1 is best, 16 inside-50s for 5.2 hmmm…
I am on iTunes listening to ‘Killing Joke in Dub’ and trying to work out if I like it or if I’m annoyed by it. I saw Killing Joke in Frankfurt in the mid-90s and they were fantastic, Jaz Colman was mental and my ears buzzed for a week. On the tele (muted) Sam Gibson is doing ballet. Early Killing Joke sounds like early Cult – when they were Southern Death Cult. I decide Killing Joke in Dub is annoying.
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Rance is tackled by Brown, while the ball is in a different postcode – Ball! Nice one ump… North kick the first of the term and edge closer. 8.4 to 6.2 North look like they believe they can beat us. Nank delivers a pinpoint look-away handball – he is a ripper. Titch misses a set shot. Rance, too slow, is tackled and the following passage of play sees the Sherrin sail over the umpire’s hat. 8.5 to 7.2 Our disposals have been poor and were it not for our tackling pressure, we’d be in real trouble. We need Dusty to join in at some stage. Lambert kicks his third. 9.5 to 7.2 I know I shouldn’t, but I’m starting to get annoyed by the number of ticki-touchwood frees the Kangas are receiving. Conca tries to break one too many tackles with the resultant turnover being marked by Brown 30 metres out, D.i.F. (Directly in Front) – Goal! 9.6. to 8.3 Soft free kick to McMillan – Goal! 9.6 to 9.3 The siren goes and Towna has a set shot from about 80 metres. In the background some North-supporting halfwit is hurling abuse at Towna while glancing at himself on the big screen. This bloke is, I’d say, in his late thirties. My suggestion for this clown is to maybe try on some big boy’s pants and grow up a bit, or go back to the kiddies table. What a twerp. Towna’s shot ends up going at right angles and almost into the second tier. Three-quarter time score 9.7.61 to 9.3.57.
Q3 notes: Cotch is a jet, the game was very messy for the last 10 minutes and this suited North, we need to keep up tackling pressure, North have won more contested ball, the last quarter will be stressful, c’mon Dusty!!!
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Dusty has moved forward. Higgins snaps – Goal!!! Bollocks – it’s Shaun Higgins, not Jack. Kangas in front. 9.7.61 to 10.3.63 Five minutes into the quarter, we have a 50-19 advantage in inside 50 disposals and we’re behind. Jesus. C’mon boys! Dusty finally makes an appearance – kicks to Caddy, great contested grab and goals from 45. 10.7 to 10.3 This is tight. Free kick then 50 to Waite (I have no idea why) Goal! 10.7 to 11.3 The best passage of play for the match – Jack quick hands to Dusty, Dusty tap to Cotch, Cotch – Goal! Unstoppable, classy, imaginative and a real team-lifter. 11.7 to 11.3 Dusty has clearly decided he has had enough of watching, wins a scrap on the wing and hits up Butler, 45m out D.i.F. – Goal! 12.9 to 11.3 Ben Brown has two chances to put North in front and misses both. We dodged a bullet there. The last few minutes are desperate and scrappy. Rance is all class and desperation – winning contests and free kicks as he does what he does week in, week out. The siren goes. We have won. Again. Tiges 12.10.82 – Kangas 11.6.72
End game notes: Our skipper – what a pearler. Cunnington (32 contested possessions!) – who wouldn’t have him? Dusty – good enough to have an impact, despite being in second gear. Bachar backed up into a pack to take a mark – he would not have done this 2 years ago. I was right about the free kicks Tiges 24 – Kangas 33. Sometimes we need to take the shot and not try to handball to someone who is in a marginally better position. Caddy is getting better and better. We won through grit and effort – this is good.
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5 Cotch – easily our best, and if he keeps this up will press for another Brownlow
4 Caddy – kicked 4 and, importantly, kicked them when others couldn’t
3 Lambert – kicked 3 and buzzed around covering enough ground for 2 players
2 Grimes – as fashionable a happy pants, as effective as combat boots
1 Vlastuin – hard as a cat’s head and, for a small defender, took a lot of big defensive marks
8: Caddy, Lambert
6: Nankervis, Rance
5: Lambert, Short
4: Conca, Higgins
1: Townsend, McIntosh, Castagna<, Vlastuin/div>
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