Jump to content
  • Podcast: Glen Bartlett Interview &      

Sign in to follow this  
Demonland

HOW FAR SOUTH? by George on the Outer

Recommended Posts

It was appropriate that Melbourne was playing its last game of season 2019 in Hobart.  After all, how much further south could the team go?

And much as it has done in many of the previous 22 games, the side managed to extract a loss from a winning position by simply giving the ball back to the opposition time and time again. In fact, they gave it back to the opposition to the tune of 53 points from turnovers while, by way of contrast North Melbourne contributed  only 17 points to their opposition in this manner.

We can argue about the cattle the Demons has left after the squad was ravaged by injury but the fact remains that when the team includes the likes of Jay Kennedy Harris, Alex Neal-Bulleen, Charlie Spargo, Billy Stretch and Corey Wagner then it’s not really destined to win against any opposition, not even one that managed a total score of 14 points just a fortnight ago.

The start of the game was the real form setter for the remainder, with Kennedy Harris giving away consecutive possessions to the opposition.  It didn’t hurt at that point of the game, but the pattern continued with Melbourne unable to develop any true momentum as each time it managed to get its nose in front, someone would simply give it back, particularly late in the quarter.

Max Gawn showed the way in the ruck, and gave Toss Goldstein a bath both in the ruck and around the ground, even topping the Melbourne score chart with three goals for the match. To amass 41 hitouts against probably the third best ruckman in the competition is a fantastic effort.

Around him, there was plenty of help. Clayton Oliver was really boring in at every opportunity with 33 touches and eight tackles. Angus Brayshaw, Christian Petracca and Jack Viney with 8, 7 and 5 tackles respectively all showed their signs of intent, but then it dropped off in spectacular fashion with one each to Jayden Hunt, Jake Melksham, Neal-Bullen and Wagner. When players who are meant to be applying pressure and none is forthcoming, we see the ball ricochet from one end of the ground to the other to little or no positive effect for the team.

Fortunately, Jake Lever and Sam Frost were at the other end to repel multiple North attacks, particularly Frost who did a demolition job on Ben Brown, after he kicked 10 last week, and will just miss out on winning the Coleman Medal.

Up forward, Bayley Fritsch again showed plenty, with three goals and three contested marks, so providing the Demons with their only real target in front of goal.  

The final quarter epitomised the Demons year as the kicked 1 goal 7 behinds to 3.1 in a tight encounter. They led by up to nine points, yet simple shots for goal were missed, there were stupid turnovers and some silly decision making that conceded yet another game. People speak about the need for leadership in these situations, but it is not the leaders doing the damage when they don’t have the ball in their hands.  

This was a game that saw the final chapter in the career of Jordan Lewis. He has provided that desperately needed leadership and more importantly example of how an AFL player should play. Tough, hard and relentless with the ability to deliver under pressure when needed.  Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see him in his prime at the Demons.  

After finishing in 17th spot with a miserable five wins, can the Demons head further south?  Fortunately, the Suns are in a worse situation even though their list is full of early draft pick talent.  

We all know about the injuries, which is why the side has more than its share of sub-standard players but if we continue to gift the opposition nearly 10 goals in a game in the coming year, then further south is not only possible, it is virtually assured!  

If we cannot replace the composure of Jordan Lewis, then we will see opportunities thrown away again and again in the future.  

The club, coach and players now sit on a knife edge.  We have seen 5 coaches sacked in 2019 in this brutal competition, none from the bottom  two sides. Any semblance of a southerly direction on-field early next year, will see the same at Melbourne.
 
 Melbourne 4.2.26 5.4.34 11.4.70 12.11.83

North Melbourne 3.4.22 5.4.34 10.9.69 13.10.88

Goals

Melbourne Fritsch Gawn 3 Melksham 2 Hunt Jones Neal-Bullen C Wagner

North Melbourne Brown Garner Higgins Polec Ziebell 2 Larkey Williams Wood

Best 

Melbourne Gawn Oliver Harmes Lewis Viney Frost

North Melbourne Higgins Polec Ziebell Pittard Williams Dumont

Injuries

Melbourne Nil

North Melbourne Macmillan (head)

Reports

Melbourne Nil

North Melbourne Nil

Umpires Deboy, Gavine, Mollison

Official crowd 8,202 at Blundstone Arena

image.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Social Media

  • Match Previews, Reports & Articles

    SOUTH OF THE BORDER by the Oracle

    Thankfully they moved this week’s game from Sydney where the sun shines and the virus breeds ever so slowly and almost nobody returns a positive test. The change of fixture comes at precisely the right time to allow everyone in town to head to the MCG on Sunday at around 3:30pm, not to catch up with what’s going on inside the ground but rather, to do what’s fashionable for woke folk in 2020 — pulling down statues. It’s time for Kevin Bartlett and Leigh Matthews to go but you can’t touch Norm Smi

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    LESSONS IN LOSING by George on the Outer

    Turn up for the game and look like you want to win it.  Melbourne lost this game to Geelong, a game after a couple of extended breaks, looking like they were at the end of a 22 game season. Right from the start there was a lack of intensity across the board, as the Demons played exactly the type of game that the ageing Geelong list wanted. Geelong repeatedly played possession footy, to avoid having to run those ageing legs, something that Melbourne failed to exploit.  To use the oft quot

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    QUARRANTINO by Whispering Jack

    At a little after 4.00pm last Saturday, the MCG ceased to be the centre of the AFL universe. That was when the AFL’s el supremo Gil McLaughlin announced that the Bombers’ Conor McKenna had returned a COVID-19 positive result and declared that the game set for the following day between Essendon and Melbourne was postponed.  What followed was truly the stuff of a pulp fiction novel. We witnessed a suitcase load of mental gymnastics and spin calculated to let McKenna (and the Essendon Football

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    WHADDA WE SING? by Whispering Jack

    When the Melbourne team sang “The Grand Old Flag” last Saturday at Marvel Stadium in the absence of skipper Max Gawn, Ed Langford and Adam Tomlinson who were first time winners at their new club and Jayden Hunt, the leading goal kicker of the day it was passed off as an honest mistake. Taken in isolation, it most probably was accidental but the problem is that little accidents have been happening far too often in the club’s recent history and, in this case, it was symptomatic not only of a day t

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    A POINT OF DIFFERENCE by George on the Outer

    It was Melbourne v Carlton at the comics stadium; a game between 16 and 17 in 2019. How could anyone pick a winner?  There had to be a point of difference, and so it would prove to be as the Demons literally fell over the line at the end, by a solitary point. In an almost complete replica of the Richmond v Collingwood game two nights previously, one of the sides (Melbourne in this case) rushed out to a five goal lead in the first quarter, while the Blues failed to bother the goal umpir

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    EXPOSED FORM by The Oracle

    Carlton fancies itself to beat Melbourne at Marvel Stadium on Saturday and, based on exposed form, why not? The Blues took it right up to the reigning premiers in their last up start and the Demons were simply horrible against the Eagles at Optus Stadium. That opening game of the season revived all of the nightmares of 2019 for a team that went inside the 50 metre arc 45 times, an advantage of 10 times over the home side and yet lost by almost five goals. Such statistics sum it up for a gam

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    SOCIAL DISTANCING by George on the Outer

    It was good to see the MFC players practicing the directives about social distancing at the game against West Coast.  Pity was that they continued to do so after the first bounce of the ball, as they allowed numerous WCE players run around un-hindered, with not a Melbourne player within 1.5 metres of them! They then found themselves looking at nearly a 5 goal deficit at the first break, which was to be essentially the final margin for the game. It is difficult to judge exactly what is going

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    BEST IN SHOW by Whispering Jack

    I am writing this knowing that the AFL has deemed that the opening round of competition will proceed but fully believing that it should not.  The world is going through cataclysmic change as a result of the overwhelming spread of the Covid-19 virus and I agree that a distraction like sport would be good for the public. However, while the physical threat to the population is bad enough, there are other  issues to be addressed including the mental health of the community and the effects on th

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    TASSIE DEVILS by Van Demon

    If you were looking for something new from the Demons that wasn’t there last year, you didn’t have to look further than the perfectly trimmed grass surface of UTAS Stadium last night as the team steamrolled the Hawks to record a comprehensive 32-point victory to complete their Marsh Community Series commitments for 2020. One new thing was the fact that for the second Marsh game in a row, the team finished full of running and they dominated the second half without the presence or the dominan

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    SOUTH OF THE BORDER by Paddy Gosch

    The Demons will go into their final Marsh Series match with a strong lineup against the Hawks in Tasmania. Both Max Gawn and Steven May, who were recovering from injuries in first Marsh Series match, have both been named. It is unclear whether Max will be on restricted minutes and will likely get breaks in the ruck with Sam Weideman and rookie Luke Jackson getting their turns in the middle. Angus Brayshaw will be getting his first taste of competitive football despite playing in last week’s

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Previews

    KANGAROO CAUGHT by Whispering Jack

    There was a fair amount of debate in our area as to whether the game warranted a full blown match report because it was felt that it was really an elevated version of a training session with match simulation but against a team in opposition colours. Although notionally the stronger side, North seemed to be using the occasion for the purpose of working on aspects of their game plan, one of the features of which seemed to be based on taking the longest possible route out of defence and good luck w

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports

    JUST AN ABERRATION by Whispering Jack

    Melbourne unveiled its top recruits with new fitness boss Darren Burgess and mid-sized bull Christian Petracca sharing top billing in the team’s Marsh Community Series opener in front of 3,095 football starved fans at Casey Fields and thousands of others watching on screens of various shapes and sizes.  What they saw was a different Melbourne to the one that failed to run out its JLT Series games last year and then crashed in a heap early in the season proper with performances lacking the z

    Demonland
    Demonland |
    Match Reports 4

×
×
  • Create New...