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POST MATCH DISCUSSION - Round 5


Demonland
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1 minute ago, Rodney (Balls) Grinter said:

So do you think Rance would be the match up for JKH had we not lost both Spencer and Smith?

I did forget about that handball, but if that was the worst of his efforts, he's doing ok in my book.

My issue is he lacks the assets and is therefore an easy match up. He is small, has a tiny frame and is not quick. If you put a ball between them, I'd expect Rance to win 10 out of 10. Your questions is somewhat irrelevant because it happened.

Kent has the speed and strength to compete with a player like Rance.

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4 hours ago, Diamond_Jim said:

Sober analysis says that is pretty well our season gone

The first 5 games (6 if you count next week) were our easy run. We needed to win 4 or 5 of those 6.

Myself and others have said multiple times that we'll lose some games we expect to win and win some games we expect to lose.

The injuries are tough, but we get some much needed leadership back next week in Lewis and a chance to take on Etihad again.

4 hours ago, beelzebub said:

No. We COULD have won with better set ups, players quicker to the ruck. How did they suddenly have space fwd ?

No apologists please

Not to have too much of a go at you BB, but frankly, you sound like a bit of a loony. 'Better set ups'? Nice and vague. 'Players quicker to the ruck'? What does that even mean?

4 hours ago, DemonAndrew said:

none of our mids can kick the ball, or want to kick the ball:

oliver - 8 kicks, 24 handballs

jones - 7 kicks, 18 handballs

tyson - 9 kicks, 16 handballs

viney - 7 kicks, 16 handballs

anb - 10 kicks, 11 handballs

stretch - 9 kicks, 10 handballs

in wet weather football. disgraceful!

We were always going to over possess tonight. That's our game style. I think it'll be adjusted across the season, but the wet weather, as I predicted, didn't help us. And it didn't help Hogan's game this time either.

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4 hours ago, Rusty Nails said:

The overuse of ring around the rosey handball (especially in the wet tonight) , often straight to the opposition, is killing us. As are our super slow mid fielders and ball hackers in Jones, Viney and Tyson. All are either a long way off their best or have never got near it so far this year, especially Tyson. Then you have other hackers around the ball like ANB and others who hardly see the ball when the heat is on like Salem. Just too many hackers who fluff around with indirect or turnover hand balls instead of recognising their limits and kicking long into the forward 50 quickly. We certainly have no idea of how to hit a target on a lead so I wouldn't bother with this in the short term as I don't think you can improve it much mid season.

I think you are right Wunders... Just go long, low and hard to a spread out forward line with Hogan, Watts and Jeffy and that's it IMO unless the opp is parking the bus...only then would I man them up! The Hawks did this for years much of the time under heat up the field although the usually had 2 very talented Talls....plus Cyril and Puop floating.

I actually found the dinky little short kicks inside forward 50 to be far more annoying than our over handballing. At least, our handball usually resulted in an attacking foray or at the very least another stoppage. We were too cute with the wet ball, when we should have kept things simple inside 50. 

4 hours ago, Demon Disciple said:

Why do we always have more that go up than stay down? I see it time and time again. Too many go up and don't win the ball, or at least kill the contest, then their numbers get the ball out the back. It's just stupid football.

Our player's are as dumb as batsh!t and our coaches are even worse for not realising this and corrected for it.

Because our defenders don't yet trust each other. They need to play more footy together.

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5 hours ago, BrisbaneDemon said:

So far tonight we have had threads started for;

Petracca - to be a average player, no real upside

viney- to be stripped of captain, 

it's comical D'land after a loss

im going to start the Goodwin to be sacked thread,  next just to fit in

Glad I missed these threads.

4 hours ago, Forest Demon said:

How many times were we hard up against the boundary and tried to wrap a kick around the body, only to kick it out on the full? At least 4 or 5 times from memory.

More experienced players just get tackled over, take the throw in and reset. Hopefully it comes.

One of them was Vince. Let's just say it doesn't always come. Dumb footy. ANB and Harmes both did it too. ANB cost us a goal and momentum on half time.

4 hours ago, Lord Travis said:

Why doesn't Hogan lead anymore? He plays his best footy leading up the ground and doubling back. Tonight he stood there like a statue calling for it on his head. I can remember two instances where he had a paddock in front of him and instead of leading st the ball carrier he stood still and called for it on his head. He's so lazy sometimes! Coaches should've thrown him into the ruck in the last quarter and he would've had heaps left in the tank while Watts was out on his feet from busting his ass again. I wish Hogan had Watts work ethic and resilience.

I reckon the weather conditions might have had an impact on this. Leading towards the ball carrier in the wet, rather than potentially drawing a free kick in a 1v1 (as he did) is the safer option. 

Edited by A F
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4 hours ago, Grapeviney said:

Absolutely shattered, but how good is it to be back playing in front of 85,000 people?! 

How exciting is it? The atmosphere was electric and I'd say it was 60-40 their way in terms of supporter, but that still means we probably had something like 35,000 turn up. What's even more amazing is that the weather predicted was atrocious and it didn't stop 85,000 people sitting out in the rain.

Looking forward to seeing how many we can get to Queen's Birthday, if we can get on a bit of a run in the next few weeks.

4 hours ago, TGR said:

Roos reckons Frost will be first ruck next week.  

I hope not. We need Frost and McDonald playing back. Frost allows us to sit a little higher defensively, knowing that his pace will cover us. We really lose something by having him in the ruck. I'd prefer to play Pedo. I think the time has now finally come, due to injuries.

 

4 hours ago, titan_uranus said:

Boy there is some absolute dross being posted on here tonight.

There's no doubt the injuries cruelled us. We were two down on the bench but Jones, Viney and Petracca were all injured and stayed on the park. It was 17 vs 22. Also, does Richmond have a single player missing due to injury? It was best 22 vs not close to best 17. The fourth quarter was nothing other than a byproduct of the players having given it 100% all night and running out of energy. The fact we were still in front with 5 minutes to go says volumes about how good we were.

However...

We should have been way, way more than 20 points up at three quarter time. IMO we lost this game in the first quarter, not the last. That first five minutes, the ball didn't cross into Richmond's forward half, yet we had nothing but 3 points on the board. We should have been 20 points up at quarter time and 40 points up by three quarter time, which would have made the fade-out in the last quarter manageable.

This is the story of our season. I think we've been the better side for longer in all 5 of our games, but when we are on top with momentum we aren't scoring goals, whilst we concede too many when the momentum isn't with us. So we end up playing better football, for longer than our opponent, but losing 3 games. 

Of the 17 fit players, a few of them were passengers, none more so than JKH. An absolute waste of space and I refuse to believe that he met any "KPI" that was satisfactory. Yes, rusty after 1.5 years out but no, tonight was not good enough. 

As for the positives, HIbberd was incredible, Oliver again a beast, Hunt is a gem, Watts was superb, Jetta is one of the league's premier small defenders, and I thought Melksham and Vince both played their best games for the season (says a bit more about the first few than tonight).

We are one of the better 2-3 sides I've seen in recent years (and Richmond possibly the worst 5-0 side) but at the end of the day it doesn't matter. There is sufficient evidence to say we should have won all 5 games and that's why it is reasonable to be upset with the 2-3 start, despite the circumstances.

Great bit about not capitalising on our offensive dominance. Completely agree. Had me pulling my hair out. And you just knew it was going to come back and bite us at some stage.

On JKH, he wasn't great with ball in hand, but I'm not sure whether you watched the number 24 that closely tonight, mate. Absolutely no way he gets dropped after laying the third most tackles on the ground (7). He's met at least one of his key KPIs, I've no doubt.

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44 minutes ago, Nasher said:

Yep - I thought Oliver was best on - and that's absolutely no slight on Hibberd who was awesome.  Thought I was the only one though based on the votes thread.

Oliver clear best afield for me. I reckon he'll have featured heavily in the coaches votes tonight too.

If you compare him to Dusty, both players got 32 touches. Clarry went at 75% DE and Dusty went at an appalling 34% DE. There's no comparison. He carried our midfield for an entire half almost completely by himself. With Jones and Viney sore and buggered, we basically had to hope Clarry would win the clearance each time.

Loved Hibberd's game. Tough 1v1, elite ball use coming off half back and the goal was a beauty. Oliver's game was something else, in front of 85,600 people. Nothing scares the kid, except maybe ANB in a bin. :P

1 hour ago, Rodney (Balls) Grinter said:

So do you think Rance would be the match up for JKH had we not lost both Spencer and Smith?

I did forget about that handball, but if that was the worst of his efforts, he's doing ok in my book.

There was also a kick into the corridor that he turned over. It screamed poor decision maker, but hopefully he can eradicate these errors from his game.

Edited by A F
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I'm definitely in the camp that says that that was a magnificent effort, we couldn't have given any more, and when we were on equal terms we controlled a lot of the game. If Smith & Spencer get injured in the third quarter instead of the second, then we win. A good team can carry two short for a quarter or two, as we did, but more than two quarters is beyond all but the greatest of teams.

However, I think we need to shift slightly from "dumb intensity" (or "intensity-at-all-costs") to "smart intensity".

"Dumb intensity" includes:

  • 4 up and none down in marking contests, forward or back
  • 4 chasing the same ball at stoppages and trying to run it forward with all of them within a radius of about a metre.
  • trying to handball our way through tight congestion, on a wet day (Toiges had a lot of success moving it from congestion with toe pokes of 5-10 metres - why did we never try this?)
  • 200+cm ruckmen chasing midfielders or on the bottom of packs
  • trying to kick the ball around the body and off balance out of defensive pockets
  • kicking to contests instead of kicking to space
  • mids turning into rather than away from congestion when they have the ball, and trying to crash through tackles

We need to keep the same intensity level but play smarter - spread better laterally, shepherd & block more in congestion to get the ball to the outside (every handball should be accompanied by a shepherd), and try to move the ball away from congestion rather than toward it.

We also need to recognise that other teams now know how good we are with contested ball, and from now on every team we play will park the bus inside their D50. We have to lower our eyes, or run it in, or kick to space. If we bomb it, it's far too easy for oppo defenders to "protect the fall of the ball" (mainly by holding Hogan) and get numbers there, and try to catch us on the breakaway. I say it again - that's how every team is going to play us from now on.

We definitely aren't far away. We just have to make minor adjustments, and just be a lot smarter with our intensity.

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We have massive issues on the outside. Stretch, Melksham, Harmes, ANB, JKH, plus a few others either lack silk/ability to hurt opposition, or can't get it.

Hunt, Lewis and Salem are good but three blokes are not enough. We need a J. Kelly, Whitfield type that run all day, get 30 a week and hurt teams.

Tom Mac is regularly getting flogged so we have big problems there as well. 

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6 hours ago, dees189227 said:

We didn't get beaten by Richmond, we got beaten by riewoldt. Also what is up with vince. he is just turning it over.  Hogan back to berating his teammates tonight. 

We lost because our ruckman was out after the first qtr and our whole structure changed. Richmond won through arse luck

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4 hours ago, A F said:

Eh? McDonald was superb tonight. Lost one 1v1 battle that I can recall, which resulted in a goal to Riewoldt in the last. Took intercept mark, after intercept mark and offered good offence off half back. I think it's one of the most complete games he's played in a long time.

During the last 10 minutes he:-

- gave away a stupid free banging into a guys head while he went down to pick up the ball...You could see it unfolding like slow motion and you just knew he was going to give that free away. Zero excuses for it.

- missed a simple opportunity to spoil a ball out of bounds that resulted in Riewoldt getting up and kicking a point (lucky). It was just a terrible effort in a contest.

- conceded a 'contested' mark to Riewoldt in slippery conditions when he had him exactly where you want him...Without a good run at the ball.

Three stinkers that you may see spread out across a season for good AFL defenders but we are treated to them in a 10 minute burst with the game on the line.

This club should expect more and until we demand excellence we will continue to get what we've always got.

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5 hours ago, bing181 said:

JKH laid more tackles in a half of footy than Kent has laid all year.

Yea I actually thought he went alright. Was in good spots, bit of flash, and nice pressure. This is all learning and are the tough yards needed for what will become sustained success. I def believe we are on the right track, signs are good and in 2018-19 wI'll be challenging for sure. To the Debby-downers out there, it must be tough viewing the world so one-dimensionally. I hope you're all ok. 

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9 hours ago, DemonAndrew said:

none of our mids can kick the ball, or want to kick the ball:

oliver - 8 kicks, 24 handballs

jones - 7 kicks, 18 handballs

tyson - 9 kicks, 16 handballs

viney - 7 kicks, 16 handballs

anb - 10 kicks, 11 handballs

stretch - 9 kicks, 10 handballs

in wet weather football. disgraceful!

The worst part is in the third quarter when we could have kicked away we still over possessed the ball.

As is often the case this was because we didn't have enough options forward of the ball which didn't help with Hogan cracking the sads.

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5 hours ago, A F said:

THE POSITIVES OVERSHADOW THE ERRORS

I thought I'd be livid if we lost to Richmond, but for the second time in three weeks, I left the ground feeling extremely optimistic about our future. Yes, we over possessed. Yes, we used the footy poorly going inside 50. Yes, we made stupid errors. eg. Harmes in second term kicking it on the full when he should have just taken it over the line. eg. ANB's brainfade on the half time break that cost us a goal. eg. Vince kicking it on the full in the third when he should have simply taken it over the line. Yes, we lost to a bunch of pretenders. But...

Oliver is already a top 10 midfielder in the comp. He is insanely good and is statically top 10 in all the key categories. And 19 years old. And has played less than 20 games. Get excited if you're not already.

Hibberd's return was superb.

Tom McDonald played his best game since early 2016.

Frost was terrific.

Jetta was his usual solid self.

Hunt was electrifying and could be anything.

We had 25+ inside 50 tackles - that's what our coaching staff want.

And as many have already said, they were always going to run over us with two down. We win it with 22 v 22. Almost no doubt.

In the last, we were sitting near the interchange bench and Harmes wanted to come off, so did Jones, but only Oliver could come off due to rotation limits. So our mids, Jones and Viney in particular, were out on their feet in the last and we just couldn't run.

Were it not for the injuries, this very young side would have easily accounted for a supposed top 4 team.

As I said last week, at some stage this year, our team is going to click and it's going to be glorious. We may leave it too late for a finals tilt, but there's still a long way to go this season. I still think we'll get our 12+ wins and I'm looking for Lewis to pay us back for the last 3 weeks, by pulling us over the line in a few games this year. It's gonna happen.

Our best can match it with just about anyone, but luck hasn't gone our way this year. But it always turns your way eventually and we're doing enough right now for it to swing our way in time. For this reason, I was glad to hear Goody praise our boy's efforts tonight, given it was 20 v 22 out there.

THE FUTURE & OUR IMMEDIATE SHORT-TERM

When Oliver, Petracca and Salem build their tanks, watch out. We are going to have a seriously good midfield trio there.

But I still worry about Bernie, who goes to ground too easily like a veteran - he reminds me of Luke Hodge in that respect.

I also worry about our midfield short term with Viney clearly still hampered by his hip. Hopefully Lewis' inclusion can provide us with a bit of depth there, as well as leadership in trying times.

To me, it's obvious that we still lack one other game breaking midfielder. Tyson and Viney are good meat and potatoes footballers and may reach A grade status one day, but at this stage in their development, they both lack that little bit of class. I'm not going to write them off though, as I think both have a much higher ceiling that they're not reaching at the moment.

Both played 74% TOG this week, which I find interesting, given how out on his feet Jones looked at 88% TOG.

The other thing that needs to improve is our midfield's two-way-running. We let Richmond score goals way too easily out the back (particularly early on), which was reminiscent of how easily we let Geelong score too. If we can tidy this up (and maybe this only happens with experience and kms in the legs), I think we'll simply dominant contests.

It'll be interesting to see whether our midfield organisation improves when Lewis comes back in next week too.

THE RUCK CHALLENGE (RATHER THAN PROBLEM)

With Spencer going down too, I'm now strangely excited by the challenge we have in front of us in a season we were never going to challenge for the flag. Without our two key rucks, our depth is thoroughly tested. Our game style must develop alternatives and we get to see what we look like when things aren't going our way the whole time on a Gawn-supplied silver platter. 

We won't then know ourselves when we finally have a fit and firing Max Gawn dominating the hit outs and it'll also give us a plan B for the day when either Max is out or he is being beaten in the ruck. It is the perfect baptism of fire for our mids and whoever has to step up in place of Gawn and Spencer, but all part of the journey that is our continuing development.

As I side note, I didn't want to write it on here, but I knew Jake would go down with an injury sometime during the 12 Gawn-less games. Was thinking it'd be last week.

OUR DEFENCE

I think Frost may well be the answer to our second KPD post, alongside Tommy. They were both terrific in tandem tonight, although their awareness at times, particularly Frost's, is still left a bit wanting - that easy Riewoldt goal out the back in the second quarter, is a prime example.

However, we now have real speed and offence off half back. Frost, Hunt, Hibberd, Melksham and even McDonald are all attacking, fleet-of-foot players. I think Lewis may well play that sweeper role to cover out the back when our zone plays a little too high. 

In time, we'll see Joel Smith back there and that will probably release Hunt into the midfield or he'll take Melksham's spot. It'll be interesting to see where Jetts sits with all of this, when we're full strength. Is it Melksham v Smith or is it Smith v Jetta?

I also felt that we adjusted our zone this week. We played a high line at times, but we look so much better when we have Frost's pace to cover (playing the anchor), because it affords Tom more confidence to leave his man and take intercept marks. He was superb in this respect tonight.

It's still a work in progress, but as a group, I was really happy with the majority of their work tonight, under extreme pressure. If Jetta was playing at Adelaide he'd be in AA contention. He is rarely beaten and manages to keep the ball in front of himself, outmuscle much larger opponents and be clean when the heat is on. He's a star. Not a perfect game, but only a few errors amongst all that brilliant 1v1 work.

INSIDE 50s & OUR FORWARD LINE

We had an insane amount of inside 50s in the first half. I didn't realise quite how many we had until I watched the replay.

I certainly took issue with our poor entries at the time, which became worse as the game went on. None of this helped our forwards or our forward structure.

As a side note, I thought by comparison, Richmond's entries for the first 3 quarters were both a credit to our defence and a sign of the insipidness and dumb play by our opposition.

Despite the forward entries, or perhaps because of them, our entire forward set up tonight seemed dysfunctional. And aside from our own poor ball use, was it simply that Richmond zoned back well or was the problem that our forwards were not working hard enough to create space for each other?

The inside 50 tackle count was certainly a positive though and I thought we swarmed them at half forward multiple times in the first three quarters. Great to see.

On this basis, despite some ordinary errors and poor decisions, JKH will get a game next week. He laid 7.

For this same reason, despite some ordinary errors and poor decisions, ANB will get a game next week. He laid a game high 9 tackles.

Harmes laid outright second most tackles on the ground with 8.

These guys are only young players and they need time to show their wares this year and improve their decision making with this experience. I think all these guys offer more than Tom Bugg and they'll keep him out of the team, I would think.

OUR OPPOSITION

Richmond'd have to be one of the worst 5-0 teams of all time. Similar to the Roos last year. They will fall hard in the second half of the season. Bookmark it.

Everything is going right for them at the moment and it won't last. They're propped up by Martin (who is probably the best player in the competition right now), Riewoldt and occasionally Cochin when he turns up. It's certainly not sustainable in the finals and as they come up against better opposition this year, they'll really struggle. So if they even make the 8, they'll go out in straight sets IMO.

Just also found out that Riewoldt had (before tonight) never kicked more than 3 goals against us, so the fact that he kicked them out of his arse, was probably quite unusual against us. But it was his accurate goalkicking that certainly kept them in it, particularly in the first half. 

CHANGES FOR NEXT WEEK

Some Demonlanders may finally get their wish next week and see Pedo in the team, because I can't see them going with just Watts in the ruck. Can't see King playing either, after one VFL game back.

Lewis will come back in, probably for Smith and Pedo in for Spencer. It'll be interesting to see.

By midnight I had Demonland hysteria fatigue and felt faint from burst blood vessels. 

After a reasonable sleep, this was the first post I read. I feel more at one with the world.

Thank you. 

 

 

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It's a strange feeling after a loss not being disappointed, last week I was ropeable but this week I feel proud with how we played losing our ruck and being 2 short for most of the game, as many have said 22v22 with no injuries and we win that game pretty easy, 1 thing that did annoy me was the amount of times Dustin Martin just dropped the ball once he gets tackled, not 1 holding the ball decision as soon as he felt pressure he just let it spill out 

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I think we are struggling to run out quarters. The swarm and spread to/from the contest looks great early on but over the last few weeks we are conceding red time goals that are costing us. And we are dead on our feet in the last few minutes of quarters. This week didn't help having a few major and few minor injuries. 

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On 4/23/2017 at 8:41 AM, Redleg said:

I think the Smith Curse is still with us. 

Has any other club lost their most important player? Does any other club have the injury list we have? We lose a game we dominate with poor kicking while the other side can't miss. Similar the next week where we lose by a couple of points after leading with 2 minutes to go and gifting the last goal. Our players get the heaviest suspensions which cost one or both games lost. Ollie continues to dominate. Our so called stars are not starring. Injured players play against us and dominate. Gus injured again.

Etc. 

 

I wrote this on another thread before the game, in a semi light hearted way. It seems even more apt after last night.

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The Herald Sun reporting of the game is a disgrace.

Loved the Dees caller to SEN post game last night, who lashed the commentators for fawning over the Tigers. Got them to admit that if not for the injuries we win.

PS. Rance says he didn't even know or was aware we had injuries. Then admits their Coaches were telling them we were down players and would run out of legs and also noticed that we had no ruckman for most of the game. Also he was on Watts early, but was then left as a sweeper when Spencer went off and Watts did all the rucking. I won't  listen to him speak anymore. 

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6 hours ago, Dr. Gonzo said:

Yeah he led and was constantly ignored. Then when they did kick to him they sat it on top of his head. He was also being scragged all night long, got one free kick but could've been a handful more. 

Makes it harder for him when he is the only tall option with watts in the ruck. Got double teamed. Bit hard on hoges. 

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My main observations from the game were:

-Clarry is already our best player at 19, a fit Gawn probably changes that

-Hibberb is what we needed with ball in hand down back

-the pressure applied at the contest almost ground Richmond into submission. We dominated the game everywhere but the scoreboard for 2.75 quarters. 

-whilst some have been complaining about ANB, I'm happy to have him in the side if he's laying 10 tackles & getting the pill 20 times a game.

-I'm not sure what the coaching staff need to do. Our dominance of the contest is not resulting into a winning score. Forward line set up & stopping easy goals the other way must be a priority. Maybe we need to focus on outnumbering out the back so we aren't getting touched up so much in transition.

-Riewoldt unfortunately was the difference as well as the injuries. It hurts to say this but he took almost all the opportunities he had & some of his goals especially in the first quarter were class.

 

Overall the club is clearly going in the right direction. We need to convert more & possibly add some more skill & composure around the forward half of the ground.

Frost & Pedo should share ruck duties next week. Other than Daniher do Essendon have a decent tall forward?

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    METAMORPHOSIS by Whispering Jack

    I’ve always believed that when the home and away matches come to an end, the football season takes on a completely different shape and character. During the regular season, each team’s goals progress as the weeks pass and if you’re good enough to survive and make the grade, the situation changes. The comparison can be made with the life cycle of a butterfly going through stages from egg to larva to caterpillar, cocoon and in the end to a bright and colourful creature that emerges from darkness i

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    STEALING THE CATS’ CREAM by George On The Outer

    They were leading by 44 points well into the third quarter of a game to decide the minor premier, having kicked nine unanswered goals. The Cats were about to lap up their bowl of cream, dreaming of next week but the Demons led by Max Gawn had other ideas. In a stunning finish, they stole the game from under them to claim the plaudits as best team and top of ladder position. In a remarkable game, it all came down to Max having to kick the winning goal after the final siren, something which s

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    SKIN THE CATS by Whispering Jack

    The task ahead for the Demons as they wend their way down the Princes Freeway to Geelong on Saturday night will be to skin the Cats. For them to come away with the points from this game would mark an historic occasion for the club as it will finish on top of the ladder for the first time since its last premiership year, 1964. And it was in that year, that a trip to Corio Bay to meet the reigning premiers in Round 12, was one of the catalysts for Melbourne’s surge to the flag. It was a top o

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    REACH FOR THE STARS by George on the Outer

    It was a game of great significance for the Melbourne Football Club. A win would see them keep top spot on the ladder with one round remaining. To achieve top place in the Round for Reach when we are all inspired to “Be Like Jim” and reach for the stars was a great way of honouring one of our heroes. All the better given that it was done by way of an emphatic 41 point win against Adelaide! It is worth remembering that, but for the umpiring mistake in the previous encounter with the Crows, t

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    TICKETS PLEASE by The Oracle

    A lot of water has passed under Princes Bridge in the five years since Melbourne last met Adelaide on the MCG. The Crows were riding high at the time while the Demons were mid-table and scrambling for a win to stay in the race for the finals. The 30,000 fans who had tickets to the game were thoroughly entertained by a close, high scoring affair that ended in tears for fans of the home team. Not even an eight-goal second term could help them.   Times have changed.    In the fi

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    ELECTRIFYING by George On The Outer

    What more can they throw at the Demons of 2021? Covid restrictions, hubs, aircraft circling between airports before landing for games and now a match stopped for 30 minutes to give a flagging opponent its second wind? To date, none of those distractions has swayed the team from their winning objectives. The game against West Coast in Perth can be marked on their report card as another positive outcome after yet another test. There was much at stake for both sides.  Melbourne had t

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    LONG AGO AND FAR AWAY by Whispering Jack

    When the combatants that are due to face off on Monday night at Optus Stadium last met, it was 11 days after the World Health Organization had declared the Covid19 outbreak a global pandemic. In Australia, the first cases had just come to light, including visiting US actors Tom Hanks and wife Rita Wilson, the toilet paper panic was in full flight and the world was starting to reel in anticipation of impending disaster. Half an hour before this last game of the opening round was due to comme

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