Tag Archives: Grand Final week

When The Game Takes Over Our Drunken Idiot Coverage! (2009 AFL Grand Final Preview)

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drunkfev

We will now briefly focus on a football game before returning you to your regularly scheduled programming…which, apparently, is this guy!

Relax, people! Once Saturday’s game is over, we can go back to the main reason we all follow the game…what stupid Brendan Fevola up to now and what EVERYBODY ELSE thinks about it! Or maybe you’ve had enough of Fev and would prefer to talk about trades – where Shaun Burgoyne thinks he is going or where Brock McLean says he is going.

Perhaps you are stunned that Marty Clarke is choosing to go home or that Matthew Lloyd is choosing to stay home. But for now, the 2009 AFL Grand Final needs to take centre stage so you’ll just have to make do with that…

Not a bad consolation though…the two best teams in the comp are virtually at full strength (sorry Max fans!) and primed to present us with a fitting finale to the footy season. It’s going to be entertaining day and a great spectacle but, please, remember to behave appropriately. You don’t want to end up like Stupid Fevola (that is, a big blokey legend!), do you?

ST KILDA SAINTS

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The secret to St Kilda’s success? Not catching swine flu from the filthy, germ-infested masses!

The dominant team of 2009 but not a clear favourite… a lack of respect or is this just history talking?

The Team
B:
Jason Blake, Zac Dawson, Steven Baker
HB: Brendon Goddard, Sam Fisher, Sam Gilbert
C: Farren Ray, Lenny Hayes, Nick Dal Santo
HF: Andrew McQualter, Justin Koschitzke, Clint Jones
F: Stephen Milne, Nick Riewoldt, Jason Gram
Foll: Steven King, Leigh Montagna, Adam Schneider
I/C: Luke Ball, Raphael Clarke, Sean Dempster, Michael Gardiner
Emg: David Armitage, Jarryn Geary, James Gwilt

In: Dempster
Out: Robert Eddy

GEELONG CATS

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The secret to Geelong’s success? Police arresting anybody that goes within one metre of Gary Ablett!

The Team
B:
Darren Milburn, Matthew Scarlett, Corey Enright
HB: Tom Harley, Harry Taylor, Andrew Mackie
C: Joel Corey, Cameron Ling, James Kelly
HF: Jimmy Bartel, Cameron Mooney, Steve Johnson
F: Travis Varcoe, Tom Hawkins, Paul Chapman
Foll: Mark Blake, Joel Selwood, Gary Ablett
I/C: Brad Ottens, Shannon Byrnes, Max Rooke, David Wojcinski
Emg: Shane Mumford, Simon Hogan, Mathew Stokes

No change

So…who wins this bloody thing? St Kilda made the one team change but it will not result in a fairytale send-off for stalwart Max Hudghton. Geelong are unchanged but have sterner opposition compared to last week. Hard to predict a winner with any great confidence; hence the call of a draw’ being quite popular.

For me, the deciding factor is simple…and probably a touch immature, but oh well. I just don’t want to see Stephen Milne win a grand final. The thought of that little twerp receiving a premiership medallion and whooping it up would ruin my entire year.

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For the love of God, do not let this twerp win a premiership!

If St Kilda did win and for whatever reason; concussion,  injury, diarrhoea; Milne was not involved at the end, I could live with that. If they could vote him off the podium and replace him with Robert Harvey, even better. But please Geelong..do not let this twerp win!!!

CATS by 22

About Freakin’ Time! (2009 Brownlow Medal)

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For just a split second, Adam Cooney made Gary Ablett wonder whether winning the medal was worth it…

He has been the best player in the competition for the past three seasons but, finally, Gary Ablett has a Brownlow Medal to his name. After being pipped at the post in 2007 and 2008, the Geelong midfielder led from the opening game and had the award all wrapped up with two rounds left to count.

The ending may have lacked the drama of previous seasons but having watched a clearly nervous Gazza watch on helplessly as less-favoured (but still deserving!) players took the honour two years running, it was more a sense of relief once the result was beyond doubt.

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He’s been crapping his daks about making a Brownlow speech for three years, now that time had come…

As expected, a number of St Kilda players polled very strongly, as did many of Gary’s teammates. Carlton’s Chris Judd finished second while Lions pair Simon Black and Jonathan Brown each picked up 19 votes. As usual, midfielders featured prominently in the votes but Brown’s equal fourth placing showed that forwards are capable of polling well.

Brendon Fevola was probably being light-hearted about the extra focus on-ballers receive from the umpires at the expense of forwards but, considering Fev has been known to check out of games when things aren’t going his way, the joke is on him!

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Fev shows his displeasure at a midfielder, one whose level of effort is never conditional, taking votes off him. He has to be joking, doesn’t he?

But enough of Ablett! More importantly, the evening kicked off with the traditional red carpet fashions. And, in typical AFL style, any hint of tradition was sold off to the highest bidder as the carpet went from ‘red’ to ‘blue’. Apparently Toyota have a new car…and it’s blue. Wow, the things you can do with technology these days! Ground breaking…

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Brownlow night is the highlight of the season for many a WAG… including the Princess Bride of Bogans, Alex Fevola!

The ‘blue-red’ carpet saw the usual mix of elegance, class and skank; from the half-mill diamond dress (ever taken a wee surrounded by four bodyguards?) to the eye-popping squeeze of former Sydney Swans supremo Dr Geoffrey Edelston! But the award for best couple of the night was unanimous…Adam Goodes and Simon Black!

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As soon as it became obvious there was no need to stay sober for a speech, Simon and Adam lived it up! You boys have my three votes!!

The Best Case Scenario! (Septocemia – 2009 AFL Finals Series)

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Imitation is usually the best form of flattery…but not down at the Cattery!

So much for that whole ‘excruciating pressure‘ theory! Septocemia 2009 will have the best possible finale as the two best teams in the competition will face off in the AFL Grand Final. Sure, we love a Cinderella story…but if it happened to involve Collingwood, that sure is one ugly Cinderella!

Thankfully, we don’t have to worry about that.  St Kilda squeaked past the Bulldogs on Friday night but Geelong roared its way in by making an absolute mess of Collingwood to qualify for a third straight premiership decider. The Cats produced close to their best football on the big stage with their star players stepping up when it mattered most.

The Pies can talk about the experience being good for their group but this club has played finals in each of the past four years, with at least two finals in the last three Septembers. How much more experience do they want before they show some true substance?

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Look – photographic evidence that All-Australian Leon Davis actually got a touch in a finals game! Cue the Bronx cheers from Magpie fans…

Whether the intent of Mick Malthouse’s widely-discussed ‘pressure’ article was overblown is up for debate. But after this trouncing on preliminary final night, one thing is certain – few coaches will be under more pressure next season than Malthouse. Season 2010 will be his eleventh year in change and second last chance to ever win a premiership with Collingwood.

And he has to do it with a shattered group of players, including some alleged high quality guys who inexplicably disappear once the ‘August’ page flips over to the back of the calendar. And did we mention that his successor will be sitting in the office next door?

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Channel Ten gave us Hulk Hogan. Channel Seven gave us David Schwartz wearing tights. Advantage Ten!

While last night’s match lacked any drama or intensity after the main break, I won’t complain. The very thought of the Magpies winning a premiership freaks me right out so Geelong’s dominance after halftime was fantastic view ing for me and capped a dismal day for Collingwood, who were also flogged in the VFL prelim during the afternoon.

And it just gets better Magpie fans…because we can all sit back and relive Collingwood’s back-to-back grand final defeats to the Brisbane Lions on Channel Ten’s One HD! What a great way to get Grand Final week kick-started!!!

And The Unlucky Bugger Is…(Grand Final Week)

Number 53 comes in and number 65 misses out on a grand final spot. Whatever Tom Harley is saying to smooth things over, it seems to be working!

Ok guys…you can get out of the damn tree now! The teams for Saturday’s premiership decider have been announced and the answer to the big question of the week is…David Wojcinski! Paul Chapman is fit and ready to play in the grand final…or is he? Chapman’s apparent half-arsed appearance at training this morning did not totally convince some onlookers and so the speculation on him taking part in the grand final will continue tomorrow and, in all likelihood, right up until the start of the game. And would we want to have it any other way?

The Thursday of grand final week is traditionally the day that the fans flock to their club’s home base by the thousands to watch training and today was no exception! The Cats would have felt right at home with the masses of fans packed into Skilled Stadium, particularly after last season, while approximately ten thousand Hawthorn fans made the trip out to Waverley to see the Hawks train. It would have been a great thrill for the players to see so many supporters out there…but Luke Hodge was not quite as thrilled to have desperate journo’s running up to ask about his ribs every few minutes!

“Nah, mate…me ribs are shithouse! Don’t think I’ll play…”

Sure they have to ask the question but even if his ribs are cactus, what else is he going to say? They might be so busted he could hang his house keys of the end of it…“Yeah, nah, they’re fine mate. It’s all good.”

Anyway, here are the teams that will definitely most likely take to the MCG on Saturday afternoon:

GEELONG

B: Tom Harley, Matthew Scarlett, Josh Hunt
HB: Darren Milburn, Harry Taylor, Andrew Mackie
C: Joel Selwood, Cameron Ling , Corey Enright
HF: Steve Johnson, Cameron Mooney, Jimmy Bartel
F: Paul Chapman, Tom Lonergan, Mathew Stokes
Foll: Brad Ottens, Joel Corey, Gary Ablett
I/C: Mark Blake, Travis Varcoe, James Kelly, Max Rooke
EMG: David Wojcinski, Ryan Gamble, Shannon Byrnes

In: Chapman
Out: David Wojcinski

HAWTHORN

B: Stephen Gilham, Trent Croad, Brent Guerra
HB: Grant Birchall, Luke Hodge, Rick Ladson
C: Jordan Lewis, Sam Mitchell, Chance Bateman
HF: Michael Osborne, Lance Franklin, Cyril Rioli
F: Mark Williams, Jarryd Roughead, Campbell Brown
Foll: Robert Campbell, Brad Sewell, Shane Crawford
I/C: Stuart Dew, Xavier Ellis, Brent Renouf, Clinton Young
EMG: Thomas Murphy, Simon Taylor, Travis Tuck

No change

Don’t Call It A Replay! (The Lost Weekend)

It’s a rematch of 1989…without Gazza senior…and Chris Langford…and everybody else who played in 1989!

Well, now we might finally have ourselves a contest! The two raging hot favourites qualified for the 2008 AFL Grand Final after claiming victory in the preliminary finals and the two best teams over the year will fight it out for the flag. Sure – some footy boffins were shouting “1999” from the treetops last week in an attempt to keep everybody interested but there is a darn good reason why Carlton’s upset win over Essendon was so special…shit like that only happens once in a lifetime! But a select number of media types were not only floating theories that an earth-shattering upset could happen again so soon, but twice on the same weekend. Huh?

So forget talk of ’99…now it’s all about 1989! But, please…it’s a rematch, of sorts, from 1989 but it’s not a damn replay! And it’s not a tryst either…isn’t a tryst a meeting between two lovers? How does that even make sense?

While the result of the Cats and Dogs clash on Friday night had a sense of inevitability, at least it was somewhat entertaining as a contest. Saturday night, on the other, produced a total stink-fest with Hawthorn embarrassing St Kilda and bringing the remarkable career of Robert Harvey to a sad end. But while there has yet to be a classic finals encounter this September, the results properly reflect the performance of the teams over the whole season – Geelong clearly the best, Hawthorn’s rise to legitimate challenger, the Dogs much improved but just a shade below the top two and St Kilda fortunate to finish fourth and exposed as pretenders by the two best sides in the comp.

Expect to see the Channel Nine helicopter flying over Buddy’s house tomorrow morning to check the status of his wrist!

And now we can all look forward to one massive week of full-on Septocemia! Brownlow Medal madness (could be a busy night, Catters!), grand final lunches, throwbacks to 1989selection headaches, hourly injury updates and death-by-analysis! And we love every minute of it, don’t we!

Well, not always…not when supposedly intelligent football minds ask dopey question after dopey question i.e. Tim Watson pointlessly quizzing Mark Thompson as to which team he would prefer to play next week after Geelong’s win on Friday night. The fact that Bomber Thompson is a three-time premiership teammate probably saved Watson the indignity of being labelled a f@#$&%g idiot live on national TV. And even then, it must’ve taken a whole lotta restraint!

Um…we’d prefer to play Bendigo, actually! Nobody ever answers that stupid question…ever! So why f@#$&n bother asking?

FRIDAY NIGHT

Doggies fans will be filthy about this for a very, very, very long time!

First Preliminary Final – Geelong 12.11.83 def. Western Bulldogs 7.12.54

There was no repeat of the 1999 shocker as logic ruled on Friday night…well, apart from one glaring umpiring decision! This didn’t rob the Doggies, mind you, so comparisons with Wayne Harmes in 1979 lack a bit of perspective! But it did kill off any hope of them pushing the defending premiers to the absolute limit.

What cost them was poor kicking at goal in the second half… and the hospital pass that set up Brad Johnson for the Max Rooke contest wasn’t too crash hot either. But with the Doggies closing in on Geelong in the third term, a series of missed shots at goal from Nathan Eagleton, Will Minson and Mitch Hahn cost them dearly. Particularly when the Cats stung them on the rebound for Cam Mooney to score, prompting this Brady Bunch-inspired graphic display that captured the moment perfectly!

Here’s the story…of a man named Rodney..who was beaten by some very lovely Cats!

How the Bulldogs respond to their stinging loss will be an interesting storyline in 2009 as they try to back up their top-four finish. But for the Cats, who don’t seem to like these grand final qualifiers all that much, they are back in the big dance and look primed for back-to-back flags. Unless…

SATURDAY NIGHT

We knew Luke Hodge was tough but he went old school crazy tough to lead his Hawks into the GF!

Second Preliminary Final – Hawthorn 18.10.118 def. St Kilda 9.10.64

Hawthorn made a mess of St Kilda – the match was effectively over at half time as the Hawks proved to be too tough and too committed for the Saints. While the result would indicate that they are in fantastic shape heading into the grand final, they do have a number of slight injury concerns. And one of them is Buddy, so expect a dramatic week at Hawks training.

St Kilda may wonder why they have attracted so much criticism for a club that finished fourth but last night demonstrated exactly why they cop it. Yes, they did finish fourth…but it has clearly been a three-horse race since May! With an alleged ‘star-studded’ list, they have yet to make a grand final since 1997 and in the latest chance to go one further, they were kicking consolation goals ten minutes into the third quarter!

And thus ends any hopes of a fairytale finish for Robert Harvey. The curtain has been dropping on Harvey’s stellar 21-year career for two months now but it is well and truly done with now. And this might be the trigger for the Saints to look to their youth in order to maximise their talent and go to the next level. So with the departure of the much-loved Harvey, does this mean the end for one particular annoying little twerp?

Goodbye Harvs…you deserved a better send-off!

Goodbye Milne…you don’t! And yes, we are trying to retire you!