Tag Archives: Barry Hall

They Didn’t Go Marching In But The Saints Are There!(Septocemia – 2009 AFL Finals Series)

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RiewoldtGoal

Saint Nick’s knee holds up long enough for him to do this…

How about that! In a finals series that has already delivered high drama and some classic finishes, we got another oneThe Saints are in the grand final…but they were this freakin’ close to a shock exit. And if it wasn’t for inspirational skipper Nick Riewoldt, they wouldn’t have made it. It really is that simple. That dodgy knee of his is more valuable than gold right now!

You just knew it was going to end in heartbreak for one of these traditionally down-trodden clubs…but recovering from this will be a massive challenge for Rodney Eade’s men. That loss was so harsh that I can’t even find a way to make fun of loudmouth lair Jason Akermanis! As much as I love doing it, it just feels cruel right now, wrong even…

CooneyShattered

The power of the red beard was not quite enough for Adam Cooney and the Dogs.

The Dogs dominated the opening quarter and could have built a more than handy lead if not for a couple of squandered opportunities. As a result, the Saints were able to stay in touch and slowly work their way to the front in the third term. Down by five points at three-quarter time, Brad Johnson put the Doggies back in front but it was the other captain that willed his side into the big one next Saturday afternoon.

Whether Johnson returns next season is yet to be determined but it would be a real boost for a wounded club to have that guy back next year.

RocketComposed

The hacks have quizzed Rocket every week about recruiting Barry Hall for 2010…imagine if David Schwartz asked him now!

And now we go through it all again tonight with the Cats and Pies and thank you Channel Ten…we can see it LIVE,  baby!  No Channel Seven again in 2009 so no more garden makeovers, no more tasty recipes, No Johanna Griggs and no watching Dr Harry feeding the fish…it’s finals action as it happens!!!

SchwartzDisgrace

Last night was Channel Seven’s grand final…and didn’t they deliver some high quality family fun!

SATURDAY NIGHT

Second Preliminary Final – MCG, 7:30pm (local): Geelong v Collingwood (TEN)

kevinscarlett

Matthew Scarlett is hoping to keep his hair for one more week before launching into some post-season stupidity!

Fresh from a nice relaxing week off, Geelong will be buoyed by the inclusion of two vital cogs and now appear to have their strongest available team. Steve Johnson and his dodgy hip will be a bit of an unknown quantity so they need somebody like Tom Hawkins to get on the scoreboard. Cameron Ling is not feeling the pressure now but that might change if Dane Swan gets a few early touches!

Geelong’s Dodgy Headline of the Week: Ling Primed For Ding Dong With Swan! Hmmm…Ling Ding, Swan Dong?

RejoiceEd

Settle Ed, it was just a semi final! Imagine if they actually won the flag!!! Actually, don’t do that…I dread the very thought.

It would have been difficult to forget about last Saturday night’s miracle win but, more importantly, Collingwood need to forget about what happened in round three! They have improved since then, says no-pressure Mick. How Scott Pendlebury’s broken leg has improved enough for him to play is beyond me…we’ll see.

Collingwood”s Dodgy Headline of the Week: Goldsack Wants Crack at Stevie J! All that’s missing is the defender reference so they could use the words back, crack and sack!

CATS by 19

Round Fifteen – The Great Unravelling!

SheedyKiddie

Look on the bright side Sheeds…at least these kids won’t be blaming you for Richmond’s ongoing woes in the future!

Oh, the drama! Something seems to happen every single weekend in AFL footy that makes you sit up and take notice…well, footy stories are always reported with dramatic overtones – whether they are worthy of the hype is up to our discretion. The largest football juggernaut to unravel this weekend was not a player, a team or a club…it was Kevin Sheedy’s coaching aspirations at Richmond!

While the campaign to place Sheeds in charge at Punt Road has been artificially bubbling ever since he left Essendon (thanks to one of his employers, the Herald Sun), it was only officially launched a week or so ago. His former teammate and notorious Punt Road malcontent Kevin Bartlett was leading the charge and the maniacal support from people who are fast approaching retirement age were selling Sheedy as if he were the only logical option for the Tigers. What could possibly go wrong?

But, unfortunately for the oldies, people who were born after the 1950’s make the decisions at Richmond and seeing the writing on the wall, Sheeds magnanimously decided to withdraw his application. He feels that his application will not receive true consideration and didn’t want another Channel Nine soap opera…which the network will now turn this into a soap opera anyway. And we all know what happens when Channel Nine has a show that viewers don’t really want to watch…they make a second series!

But all that hard work from Bartlett and friends down the gurgler…they are far from impressed! Will they suddenly lose interest in dictating who should coach Richmond next year or find another experienced campaigner with a once-impeccable record to endorse? Wonder what Ron Barassi is up to these days? Poor Sheeds. But he should know how melodramatic things get on the coaching roundabout…and not just at Richmond!

Now apart from Kev,what else went wrong during The Great Unraveling?

The all-conquering Geelong Cats?

ThompsonUnhappy

Joel Corey is shocked as Mark Thompson raises his voice for the first time since the year 2006!

The Fremantle Dockers…again!

FreoGoal

Yep, this was Freo’s only goal for the night. Savour the moment…

The Sydney Swans without Barry Hall!

HallGoodbye

Bye bye…Barry! Bye bye…Sydney Swans for 2009! Bye bye…any mention of AFL footy in the Sydney papers for the rest of the year!

Port Adelaide’s credibility!

RodanLoss

Could be worse, David Rodan…you could still be at Richmond!

The Games:

ThomasCelebrates

A big goal, even bigger celebration…yep, that’s what we’ve come to expect from Magpie Dale Thomas!

Sheesh…that was close! Collingwood appeared to have this match all under control before the Doggies fired up in the last term. But the Pies held on to win by one point and showed that they could well be a threat to the Saints and/or Cats in two months time. The Dogs showed that they are at least capable of coming back from 39 points down…shame they were down by 41 in this game though!

DidakWatson

Nice to see Alan Didak playing great footy and talking to the media without having to use the words “I’d like to apologise for my actions”!

HallSendoff

Yep, Bazza was sitting in the back of a ute for his lap of honour. Could not have been more perfect!

The Sydney faithful bid farewell to their favourite brain-snapping bruiser during Saturday’s home game against Essendon…and that was easily the highlight of their afternoon. It was a taste of what life will be like without him – struggling team, no finals and not even a hint of mindless violence to keep people entertained. The Bombers remain in the finals hunt with a rare interstate winno wonder they are a wee bit excited.

FevSpecial

Fev loves pulling freakish goals out of his arse…this was one of his absolute best!

Brendan Fevola has his care factor set to ‘high’ and attitude set to ‘smartarse’ on the way to registering a career-high nine goals in Carlton’s win over Richmond. Which is great against a crap team in early July…but Carlton need Fev to show this amount of energy and committment in the crucual games coming up. Will we get ‘interested Fev’ then or ‘sooky Fev’? We shall see…

DeledioHand

B..R..E..T..um, do I spell my name with one T or two? Or is it three?I always forget…

VossWinner

“Injuries, schminjuries! We beat Geelong and we deserve some respect, ya pricks! Yeah, you heard me…pricks the lotta ya!!!”

Gee…when it rains in Geelong, it pours doesn’t it! Barely lost a game for two and a half years, few injury troubles…now they have lost two games and half their team in one week! Brisbane took full advantage and super coach Michael Voss has his Lions all set for a return to finals action….and loving it too, one suspects!

GoodwinChair

Simon Goodwin puts on a brave face after his 250th game…but secretly shattered that his mates let him down by allowing their opponents to kick a goal!

Have the Adelaide Crows ever had an easier night’s work than this? Fremantle have had plenty of shitty results in their checkered history…but one goal in an entire game? One freakin’ goal? Surely it can’t get any shittier than this for the Dockers…can it? Well, don’t put it past them – they still have away games against the Dogs and Cats yet!

BuddyWins

Not sure where you have been, Buddy…but welcome back!

Maybe Hawthorn aren’t stuffed after all…though they looked certain to suffer defeat at the hands of the Kangas in Tassie on Sunday. The Hawks were holding out for a hero and up stepped Lance Franklin!  Buddy appeared from under the rock where he had seemingly been hiding with a stellar final term to pinch a vital win away from North Melbourne and stay in contention for the finals. The Roos may lack the stars but at least they have the cars – Mazda’s renewal of their major sponsorship a major boost…almost better than the four competition points. Almost…

JurrahHanger

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you…Mr Liam Jurrah!

Not sure how you explain the world going all arse-backwards like this but Geelong have lost two in a row and Melbourne have won two in a row! Jimmy Stynes would have loved the events that unfolded at the ‘G…not surprisingly, Mark Williams hated it! And now his players will be hating him after a 6am wake-up call! Choco can’t afford any more performances like that if he wants to play finals…or finalise that new contract!

The West Coast Eagles kept this one close for three quarters, placing St Kilda’s pursuit of The Perfect Season in some jeopardy until they got serious. The Saints eventually made it fifteen from fifteen and the coach felt that being able to win games interstate was important…which it is; though it is probably more important not to lose against a bottom-four side ever, no matter the venue! And now that the Eagles’ biggest and best player might be done for the year, so could any chance of them landing a big scalp before seasons end.

And To The Surprise Of Absolutely Nobody…(Media Street)

HallRetires

Bazza enquires with Paul Roos as to whether it would be ok to punch a journalist as his final act in Swans colours. Looks like Roosy is giving it some serious thought!

Wow. Barry Hall’s time with the Sydney Swans, and probably AFL footy, is up. Surprised? No, neither am I. It wasn’t like he pretty much forecast it in print late last week or anything

Barry Hall Loses It

If Barry does want to find a new club in 2010, this is probably why it won’t be the West Coast Eagles.

Controversy has pretty much been his middle name during his playing days, although his strength and influence did help catapult the Swans into the AFL elite and a long awaited premiership. But his inability to control his aggression has prematurely ended his time in Sydney.

SwansCup

Oh yeah, that’s right. He’s a premiership captain! Easy to forget sometimes…

So, I wonder what Barry will do now…Duh, we all know that – punch blokes for a living! Business as usual, you might say. Well, this time the other guy will be punching back.

BazzaMitchell

Just when it appeared that he found a way to do dumb things and hit people without getting suspended…

RuttenHall

…that Ben Rutten and his pesky jaw went and ruined everything!!!

Making the decision to step away from footy now is probably for the best. He has time to jump into the boxing ring at least once before he has to decide if he has one more season of footy in him. I think he really needs to fight somebody in the ring, make a shiteload of money in the process, and then decide if that is what he really wants to do with himself.

Barry

Gloves on, arms pumping, no umpires in sight – look how happy he is!

But if he wants another crack at AFL, which club would take such a gamble? All sixteen will be quizzed about Hall ad nauseum from now until the end of the season, probably after every loss. They will all be hoping that Baz just leaves the gloves on and saves them all the trouble!

Round Fourteen – Saints Defeat Cats, Now Face Connor MacLeod!

ConnorMacleod

Only decapitation from the blade of the Highlander stands between St Kilda and immortality! Or they might lose to the Doggies…

There can be only one…undefeated team left!

GardinerMark

And that team is…St Kilda! The Saints survived in an epic contest at Whatshishead Stadium. Thirteen wins each, two months of anticipation and no shortage of hype but the game delivered everything we all expected…perhaps more! An amazing start, great fightback from the Cats and a grandstand finish. How crazy will the build-up be to this year’s grand final if both these teams make it…please let it happen!!!

There can be only one…reigning premier – but not for long!

MitchellShattered`

The Hawks are stuffed.

There can be only one…Tom Cruise!

CruiseFooty

And he was at the footy on Friday night to take in some of the action between the Pies and Bombers. Katie Holmes was there too…she spent the night trying to find a back exit or open window from which she could escape! Run Katie – run for your life!!!

There can be only one…Jim Stynes!

StynesJumper

The former Demons star and club president faces a tough battle having been diagnosed with cancer. His team put in a performance on the weekend that befitted the emotional week for all involved at Melbourne…unfortunately, this type of performance is a rarity for the Dees.

There can be only one…Kevin Sheedy!

SuperSheedy

The highly predictable campaign to make Sheeds the next coach of Richmond was officially launched last week after the crushing loss to St Kilda. Of course, all his supporters appear to be aged 50 or above…and his campaign manager is a guy who was so out of touch with the coaching caper twenty years ago, he got the flick from Tigerland and refused to go near the place until recently. As great a coach as Sheedy is and/or was, do any of these old dudes realise it is almost the year 2010 now?

There can be only one…most glamorous WAG?

WAGSurvey

According to the Herald Sun’s annual footy survey, these are the types of questions us footy fans really want to know the answers to. Now I know that this particular media outlet is designed to entertain us rather than inform us so there is no point taking it seriously. But honestly…shit like this is just a waste of f@&$#ng time, isn’t it?

There can be only one…Channel Seven!

Plugger91

A flashback to a classic Geelong-St Kilda match…the perfect lead-in to yesterday’s blockbuster. But what did CH7 show before this?

RevengeNerds

Yep, nothing helps builds the anticipation for a massive game of footy like…Revenge Of The Nerds 4!!!

There can be only one…Terry Wallace!

WallaceMedia

How the hell does Terry Wallace get flooded with offers from all forms of media after his disastrous tenure at the Tigers? And is there anybody less qualified to comment on what Richmond should be doing right now than the guy who just actually effed it up over five years?

The Games:

FraserGoal

Magpie fans celebrate as ruckman Josh Fraser plays well and doesn’t even dog it once! Suck on that, Grant Thomas…

Well, Anzac Day seems like a lifetime away now, doesn’t it!  And nice to see our beloved media hacks working Tom Cruise references into their work as best they could! That’s right – Collingwood Cruised to victory against Essendon to open round 14 action, leaving Matthew Knights to pick up the pieces and keep Essendon in the finals hunt. At least Mark McVeigh will be fresh for the next match…unless Dean Solomon is back in town this week!

PregameDees

Alright, which of you blokes have stolen the footys? We only have two and can’t afford to buy any more. Just give ’em back, will ya’s?

Yes – Melbourne finally had a win! Yes – they did it for Jim Stynes! And yes – they showed the passion and commitment to make their supporters proud on such an emotional day! But, come on – they were playing an equally crap team who have barely won outside of Perth since Chris Judd left town. If they couldn’t win this match, then there was no hope for this club whatsoever…

BrennanCarr

It will cost him a few weeks but for what he did to Josh Carr, on behalf of the AFL world, I say…thank you Jared Brennan!

Gee, the Power must really love Mark Williams! In the first game since they learnt that Choco would be given the opportunity to coach on at Port Adelaide, his team blitzed high-flying Brisbane in the final quarter and dragged themselves back into finals calculations. So how did they do it? They prepared…now that’s a handy tip!

ThumbsUpRocket

Wow, a rare smile and a big thumbs up from Doggies coach Rocket Eade! But who is he copying…Barry Hall or Arthur Fonzarelli?

Bulldogs – awesome! Hawthorn – shit! Probably no need to elaborate much more on this one…

FoleyBoot

Surely you don’t need to employ Kevin Sheedy as your coach to teach players where your footy boots are meant to go. Um, Nathan Foley…try your feet!

Up at Carrara Stadium, Adelaide scored a relatively comfy win over Richmond. Local boy Kurt Tippett showed a liking to playing footy in Queensland with five  goals for the winners. Wonder if he has heard about this new team that will be starting up on the Gold Coast soon?

MickeyO

Micky O’Loughlin whoops it up after kicking the sealer. He only has a couple of months left so let him lap it up while he can!

Whether this was Sydney’s first taste of life without Barry Hall has yet to be determined. If so, it appears that it will be a struggle. But the Swannies did win a close one against North Melbourne that keeps them within reach of the finals. But let’s face it…without the prospect of witnessing a Bazza brainsnap, who really wants to see Sydney feature in September action anyway?

StevieJOut

Steve Johnson out? Guess it is too late to change my tip…

What a freakin’ game!!! What a freakin’ game!!! What a freakin’ game!!!

CarltonYellows

The famous old dark…yellows? No, seriously…THAT is the Carlton team. They actually played in that!

Fremantle and Carlton played last night? Really? With all the excitement of the St Kilda-Geelong game, I totally forgot! Apparently, the yellow team won

Round Thirteen – An Unlucky Number For Some!

LovettClimb

Unlucky number 13? Not for Andrew Lovett…it’s his incredibly f$@#ing lucky number!

It is an unlucky number for some people. In fact, fear of the number 13 is officially recognised as a fair dinkum phobia! It’s called Triskaidekaphobia…and clearly Brendon Fevola suffers from it if Friday night is any indication. Actually, he must have plenty of phobias that have caused him to not give a shit during various games in his career. The poor bloke…

NineNaitanui

Speaking of lucky numbers, Nick Naitanui makes it great to love the West Coast number 9 again!

Obviously, nobody from Geelong or St Kilda is afflicted with Triskaidekaphobia as both clubs have started the season undefeated with thirteen straight wins. They face each other next week…you might be made aware of it this week. Approximately 458 times! So beware…

LatestPunch

Ah, Barry? Are you serious? Are you that bloody stupid? Yep. appears so!

Adelaide’s Ben Rutten was also a little unlucky on Saturday when his number was drawn out at random in the Barry Hall Brain Fade Sweepstakes. First prize was a smack in the head! Hall has done worse during his career; much, much worse; but you can pretty much guarantee that the number of AFL games he has left with the Swans is less than thirteen!

WarrenBreak

Sure I just broke my leg but…man, this pain whistle is freakin’ awesome! I’m the luckiest man alive!!!

Once the morphine wears off, young Roo Ben Warren will be feeling more than a touch unlucky. Jade Rawlings will now be feeling a little bit unlucky…that his side doesn’t play the West Coast Eagles in Melbourne every week. But the unluckiest people from last week…Michael Jackson fans who had bought tickets for his comeback tour! And don’t forget the Farrah Fawcett fans too…

The Games:

FevDenial

Hey, none of this is my fault! If you pricks just kicked the ball exactly where I want it every single time, I can just kick goals and be a legend. So wake up to yourselves boys!!!

Look out, Carlton is coming…undone! Essendon destroyed the Blues by 69 points in front of a massive crowd at the ‘G on a night where the Bombers could do no wrong. Even their bad news was relatively good. The loss caused major embarrassment for the favoured Blues and the coach might be getting a little fed up with his flakey, disinterested, sook-arse full forward. Would they dare drop him? Yeah, right!

RoosBazza

Well, you guys try telling Barry that he’s being a dickhead…I’m not gunna do it! Do you think I’m crazy?!

Barry Hall and Sydney hit Adelaide with everything they had but the Crows fought back late to win a vital game that could just about sink the Swans for 2009. With the freakish Brett Burton due back shortly, the Crows appear finals bound…and no team would want to visit the city of Adelaide in September!

HeathShaw

Heath Shaw shows that it’s much better to fly than to lie!

See what happens when the dickhead element at a footy club is reigned in? Pay attention Carlton and Sydney! Swan, Didak and Shaw come up big as the Pies bulldoze Fremantle in the second half and stick it to all those nasty, nasty critics. The Dockers also lost Matthew Pavlich to injury and are fast running out of excuses. Nah, Mark Harvey will come up with a few more yet…

HappyVoss

Unhappy? Vossy looks fairly happy to me…but then he has always been pretty pleased with himself!

Melbourne may have picked first in the 2008 draft but Brisbane may have been the biggest winner by selecting Daniel Rich. The Lions were also easy winners on Saturday night as the Demons continue to stink up the competition. But fear not, loyal Dees fans – Gary Lyon will come back soon and fix everything…as if he would leave his cushy media gigs to coach that lot!

BlondeFinger

Charming! But she was right…LeCras missed the shot so it was only worth one finger.

Hawthorn’s attempt to defend their 2008 premiership was already looking shaky….and it just got a whole lot worse! Nic Naitanui, the Fijian-born rookie who did stuff-all for three quarters, sparked the West Coast Eagles with three final quarter goals for a famous win that leaves the Hawks in all sorts of bother. Once John Worsfold figures out what to make of the kid, he should be a beauty!

ComfyUndies

Yes, Mrs Murdoch, I am wearing Bonds! They’re very comfy undies!

Geelong warm up for the St Kilda game with a cruisey win over Port Adelaide and continue to put together an amazing sequence of sustained awesomeness. Mark Thompson has now extended his contract for another couple of seasons…wonder how many milliseconds he took to mull over that one? Mark Williams, on the other hand, must be pissed that his contract situation is blowing up in the midst of his team’s sucky streak. That’s probably why he has gone into Terry Wallace salesman mode in order to save his own arse…

StacksOn

STACKS ON!!!

It was a hard slog, and the coach thought they were a little bit sleepy, but the Westen Bulldogs stayed in the box seat for a top four spot with a win over the Crockeroos. The new North Melbourne coach was pleased with the direction his team was taking and one rookie in particular. Well, he didn’t break his leg so that gives him an edge over their other first year players!

MaxBaby

Sorry Max, it’s too late to take you to the hospital…we have to deliver this baby right here, right now!

If you’d have said that one team would fail to kick a goal in the first quarter of the St Kild-Richmond game, it would have to be Richmond, right? Wrong! The Saints were down two goals to zip at quarter time! Of course, they responded by keeping the Tigers away from goal for about 90 minutes or so and kept their unbeaten reord intact for another week. Now they play Geelong and coach Ross Lyon is getting excited…if he is, it might just be for the first time in his life!

Round Twelve – What Happened Again?

JuddBlood

Mmm…tasty! Friday night viewing at its finest starring Chris Judd

TwigsJudd

But not even the prospect of a blood-splattered reunion could keep his girlfriend away. Now that is true love!

Wow, that split round seems to drag on forever, doesn’t it! Feels like an age between Juddy’s face explosion on Friday June 12th and Cam Mooney brain explosions yesterday at Subiaco. Can barely remember most of what happened in between. If only one could find some kind of pictorial montage to help jog the memory…

Hmmm…

SevenTypo

Looks like the guy responsible for captions at Channel Seven took time off during the split round! Wonder who filled in for him and came up with this howler? My money is on David Schwarz…

KerrCousins

Ben Cousins and Daniel Kerr reflecting on old times…the ones they can remember, of course!

SelwoodShoulder

If you thought Juddy’s nose made you a little squeamish, how did you go when the Brisbane medicos popped Troy Selwood’s shoulder back into place!

BrawshawMedia

Sorry, did you say $800,000? How is this guy going to find enough money to pay Nathan Buckley to coach his club?

MalthouseCake

Well done, Mick. Remember – if the knife touches the bottom, you have to kiss the nearest boy! Now imagine if Buckley was the coach…Eddie would bring cake every week!!!

The Games:

ZacAttack

Suffer in ya jocks, Hawthorn! Hawk reject Zac Dawson actually kicks a goal of his own that helps sink Carlton and keeps St Kilda unbeaten after 12 rounds.

TigersSong2

Anyone ever associated with the Richmond Football Club joins in to sing the song after they beat West Coast. Well, it rarely happens so let them have their fun!

CoolroomDarwin

The Doggies took a nice trip to Darwin, chilled out inside a coolroom and they destroyed Port Adelaide during the split round. It was like they have just had two weeks off…lucky them!

BrownyVoss

Great win by the Lions…and you just know that whatever Browny is drinking there, it sure ain’t Powerade!!!

MolloyLaidley

Dean Laidley’s wild week started with an important trip to Adelaide…it ended with a sudden resignation and a visit from Mick Molloy! Rough week…

McVeighRivers

Very predictable result on Friday night. Melbourne = shit, Essendon = promising, Mark McVeigh = dumb!

BarryThumbsUp

I tipped Sydney to win, I have Scott Pendlebury in my fantasy team and I don’t like Collingwood very much. What a shitty Saturday night! Thumbs down, Barry. Thumbs down!

MooneySitter

They keep racking up win after win but any time a Geelong forward misses a sitter in front of goals, that’s the story right there! Especially when this hairy bloke is involved…

Round Eleven – The Excitement Builds In Western Sydney

WesternSydney

The suburbs of western Sydney look exactly like this year’s NAB ad…well, it would if you removed every single Sherrin!

Half Back Flanker went on a bit of a field trip for round eleven of the AFL season and ventured out into the Aussie rules footballing hotbed that could well be soon on the receiving end of the 18th AFL franchise. I thought it might be nice to gauge the levels of excitement and anticipation from the millions of  residents in the west of Sydney as they count down to the arrival of their very own AFL club.

Well, having left Sydney and returned to Swine Flu Central…I can’t say that Sydney’s west is exactly swept up in AFL fever. It was like round eleven never actually happened! Not exactly sure why Andy D is so gung-ho about expanding into western Sydney..no, actually I am – there are a shitload of people out there! And they are watching plenty of footy. But let me tell you something…they ain’t watching our game!

If you wanted to talk to the locals about how the Tigers died in the arse during the second half on Friday Night football, they would have agreed. But they are talking the Wests Tigers in the NRL…not Richmond! And while the coach of the West Tigers might be in trouble, at least he still has a job…and he actually won something during his time there. Terry Wallace has neither of those things

Terry Farewell

Richmond fans in western Sydney had to stay up past 2am on Saturday morning to watch Terry Wallace coach the Tigers to the last loss of his career.

And just say that you were keen to check out the Tigers-Doggies game and lived in western Sydney – you had to wait until after 11pm for the start of the match on Channel Seven. The Friday night marquee event AFL game and a massive audience in the largest growth area in Australia that has been targeted to adopt your code…and they are the last group of people in the entire country to see it?

And things didn’t improve on Saturday either. The ladder-leading Saints had another win? Nuh, they didn’t play until Monday night and they (being St George Illawarra) lost to the Gold Coast. And if you settled down in the family home to watch the action on a Saturday night, no AFL either. It was rugby union between the Wallabies and Barbarians…where the Lions were British, not Brisbane, and the Blues were from Auckland, not Carlton. If you went to the pub for some pay TV footy action, it was all about Johnathan Thurston and his Cowboys – not Toby Thurstans and the victorious Port Adelaide!

At least we saw some AFL action on Sunday with the Sydney Swans playing Hawthorn…it was live and everything. Sure, every pub with a TV had the rugby league on but those with a second screen were showing the Swannies. Sure enough, the Swans lost; in part to a classic Barry Hall brain-snap; and big bad Bazza has pretty much been the only AFL coverage in the Sydney media for the next three days.

BazzaMitchell

Another Barry brain-snap…but it’s probably the only way to keep AFL and the Swans in the Sydney papers!

Say what you like about the hot-headed Swans spearhead but if it wasn’t for Barry Hall doing stupid things on a regular basis, the term ‘AFL’ would barely be uttered up there. Gary Ablett and the Cats keep tearing up the competition…read the scores in the paper the following day. The Crows and Bombers put on a great show with some spectacular goals…didn’t watch or listen to a second of it! Probably just as well for me…

And how about the latest teenage whizkid to hit the big time! Huh, who the hell is Jack Watts? They are talking about rising Wallabies star James O’Connor and his selection in the best rugby team in the country. They wouldn’t have the first idea about Watts making his highly (try ‘overly’) publicised debut for the worst team in the league – which just happened to coincide with Melbourne’s home game blockbuster against the biggest crowd drawing team. What a funny coincidence…

So, despite the miserable skies and hail storms greeting me at the airport, it was great to arrive back at the home of AFL football and catch up on what happened in round eleven. The guy behind the success at the Swans has doubts about the new Sydney club…and after my experience last weekend, I would have to agree.