Richmond 14.11.95 d Essendon 11.11.77
That was magnificent. It’s eleven thirty on Friday night. I am still buzzing. I have fired off the yellow and black signal flare in the direction of the Overland Track to confirm the news to my colleague Dugald. It has also alerted my secret team of quolls who, while he sleeps, will arrange twigs, pebbles and their own scats into the words MATHEMATICALLY POSSIBLE outside his tent.
I have so much love in my heart for Shane Edwards right now. Shane, I am so sorry I said in 2008 that you had peaked and weren’t up to it.
Ivan Maric, what leadership and confidence he showed tonight. I just love listening to the bloke talk too. I wonder if he’ll end up as a coach – he seems to be a genuinely thoughtful bloke and not just the product of media training. Lindsay Gilbee said in awe “ah, doesn’t he speak lovely?”
I have been saying for the last three weeks that I just want us to keep winning and not even think about finals. Tonight Ivan said the same thing – vindication!
Nathan Gordon stood under a high ball, got whacked, went back and nailed the set shot at goal. On the radio Parko said he thought that would be the making of the young man.
Matt Thomas slowed down and was subbed tonight but he did a lot of great work alongside Cotch, and one really smart thing, an ambitious underground handball that scooted through two Bombers then sat up beautifully for a Tiger to take without breaking stride.
Jack Riewoldt is really testing my patience. Thankfully goals are coming from a variety of other sources, but he is still The Pea as Stan Alves calls it, and he is under performing in that role.
Alex Rance did a fine job on the monster Carlisle. Did he stay on him in the last quarter? Carlisle was unsighted, Daniher was nowhere and the TopKnot Kid, Hurley, took one great grab, shanked his kick and didn’t get near it again.
The Dons kicking was really outstandingly awful. The number of out of bounds and didn’t make the distance shots was bottom-4 worthy. Richmond made an appalling error from a kick out, and Dell’Olio and Carlisle between them botched a gimme goal. It was briefly like watching Rwanda v Turkmenistan in the Cricket World Cup.
Cotchin, Martin, Deledio and Riewoldt – all those big names were reasonably quiet. Miles has become a crucial cog incredibly fast; which speaks volumes about his ability but also about Richmond’s weakness in winning it in midfield before he came into the side.
Speaking of the yoof, Dimma said in the post-match that Lennon and McBean had things they had to do better, and “we are past just handing out jumpers to young blokes”. I think he’s right and I agree now with what Sean at RFC Ramble has been saying all along – maybe with Grigg and Thomas out and those two in, we’d have lost this game.
So in closing I hope Dugald is feeling the good vibes from all around the country and sleeping soundly in his bag. The boys put in a genuinely solid effort tonight and put a sloppy and under strength opponent to the sword. Bring on the Crows.