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spirit of norm smith

Greatest wins (best 50 in the last 50 years)

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No.28 1987 Round 10 v Bombers at Windy Hill 

We all remember Brett Bailey as the bloke who kicked the winning goal to win the 1987 Night Grand Final, to deliver the first silverware that many of us remember.  It was the catalyst in our 87 rebirth.  But we should also remember a game in 87 out at Windy Hill that I attended about a month later and one in which Brett Bailey was the star. 
 

After 9 rounds, the Dees were 4 wins 5 losses and struggling to again rise up the ladder beyond 8th. The Bombers were very strong having the core of the 84 & 85 premiership teams still on board and in the five. A loss here would make finals very hard to achieve and at Windy Hill, this assignment was very difficult.  Daniher, Merrett, Madden, Salmon, Hawker, Foulds, Duckworth. Many red and black stars. We’d beaten them in the night GF (perhaps catching them off guard and through sheer grit) but to win at Windy Hill would be a massive hurdle.  I hadn’t seen us win there so it was unfathomable to see a win.  Plus we had most of our top 5-6 top players out again. 

So how did we win it? Simply I remember two things. The first was the wind.  It was a distinct advantage to the end.  Yes we had to be smart but I actually thought the windy day would suit the Dons. The second was the tenacious fight from all the blokes in red and blue.  They were seriously outgunned for talent but not heart.  
 

We used the breeze first to setup the game with a 3-goal advantage.  We were down by a goal about at half time so it was game on.  But the umps were crucifying the Demons with the home crowd getting the noise to create frees. 
But in the third with the wind, we kicked 9 goals to 2 goals.  We kicked the last 6 goals of the 3rd quarter and now led by 6 goals.  Northey leapt our at 3/4 quarter time. Sheedy ripped into his troops. 
This 3rd quarter avalanche was brought about by the skill of a young 20 year old Gary Lyon (I remember he was a lean, smart and agile young forward) and a pure footballer in Brett Bailey.   Bailey was not quick or highly skilled, but used his engine, his smarts and his desire to win the footy. Two different styles of players. Lyon kicked 3 goals in the 3rd.  I also remember a great goal to Russell ‘Rhino’ Richards. The Rhino was such an energetic footballer with a burst of pace.  
In the last, our desparation and fight held out the Bombers. Spalding, Wight and Giles holding out the talls.  Koop, White, Yeats kept the smalls shutout. Our contested footy held firm and they only scored 3 goals in the last.  The siren gave us a 22 point win. Brett Bailey kicked 5 goals and Lyon 4 goals.  Bailey was clearly BOG with over 30 possessions and probably 20 contested.  
The Bombers were despondent. The arrogant Sheedy was beaten.   A team of mostly battlers and youngsters had caused a huge boilover (again). We had a sense that with some stars returning from injury, we could make a run for the finals.  This upset win would ultimately prove pivotal to our run to 1987 September action. 
 

Melbourne 15.12.102 defeated Essendon 11.14.80. 

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No.27 2018 Round 10 v Adelaide at Alice Springs 

In 2017, the Crows had embarrassed the Dees in Darwin winning by 7-8 goals.  They were runners up in 2017 after being flag favourites.  Whilst having a mixed start to 2018, they were a strong side.  The Dees had the Alice Springs Footy in the Red Centre game and were desperate for a win in the NT. We’d just beaten the lowly Blues by 109 points in round 9 (6 wins 3 losses) with 4 straight wins so confidence was up. The game also was Jake Levers first game against his former club.  This game would see if we were pretenders or contenders. The family sat down to watch the game on the electronic flat screen 55cm device with anticipation.  

The Dees were on fire early as we scored 4 goals but the Crows answered with two quick replies. It was to be 7 goals to 3 goals at quarter time. Our attack on the footy, pace and multiple scoring options was too much for the Crows.  Our midfield dominated. Whilst sometimes still overpossessing the footy (we had 468 possessions) the Dees dominated the rest of the game. We outscored the Crows by 5 goals to 1 (2nd qtr), 6 goals to 1, then 5 goals to 3 in the last.  It was a smashing and a complete four quarter effort. A late goal to the Crows may have caused some frustration as I was pushing for the 100 point win.  The final margin was 91 points.  Unbelievable.  Gawn has dominated Jacobs.  Viney, Jones and Oliver has dominated in the contest with 30+ possessions each albeit mostly handballs.  Jetta had beaten Eddie Betts again. Lever had controlled the backline. 
The goals were shared around.  Hogan (5 goals) and Tommy McDonald were the key forwards.  Melksham, Neal-Bullen, Tim Smith and Petracca were other forwards who chimed in with multiple goals each.  But the star was Angus Brayshaw.  He had 37 possessions (22 kicks 15 handballs) 14 marks and 3 goals. It was hard to fathom why the Crows didn’t shut him down. Perhaps they tried and simply failed. Brayshaw was clearly BOG, with his kicking - by right or left foot -  propelling countless Demon attacks.  Strangely, he only got 2 Brownlow votes (Neal-Bullen got 3 votes) for the game which highlighted the bizarre system of the umps votes.  
 

The Dees had shown their ability, their contested footy superpowers and their attacking power.  We were on a high, with the finals a real chance and we couldn’t wait to see what the rest of 2018 brought us.  
 

Melbourne 23.8.146 defeated Adelaide 8.7.55

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2 hours ago, spirit of norm smith said:

No.27 2018 Round 10 v Adelaide at Alice Springs 

In 2017, the Crows had embarrassed the Dees in Darwin winning by 7-8 goals.  They were runners up in 2017 after being flag favourites.  Whilst having a mixed start to 2018, they were a strong side.  The Dees had the Alice Springs Footy in the Red Centre game and were desperate for a win in the NT. We’d just beaten the lowly Blues by 109 points in round 9 (6 wins 3 losses) with 4 straight wins so confidence was up. The game also was Jake Levers first game against his former club.  This game would see if we were pretenders or contenders. The family sat down to watch the game on the electronic flat screen 55cm device with anticipation.  

The Dees were on fire early as we scored 4 goals but the Crows answered with two quick replies. It was to be 7 goals to 3 goals at quarter time. Our attack on the footy, pace and multiple scoring options was too much for the Crows.  Our midfield dominated. Whilst sometimes still overpossessing the footy (we had 468 possessions) the Dees dominated the rest of the game. We outscored the Crows by 5 goals to 1 (2nd qtr), 6 goals to 1, then 5 goals to 3 in the last.  It was a smashing and a complete four quarter effort. A late goal to the Crows may have caused some frustration as I was pushing for the 100 point win.  The final margin was 91 points.  Unbelievable.  Gawn has dominated Jacobs.  Viney, Jones and Oliver has dominated in the contest with 30+ possessions each albeit mostly handballs.  Jetta had beaten Eddie Betts again. Lever had controlled the backline. 
The goals were shared around.  Hogan (5 goals) and Tommy McDonald were the key forwards.  Melksham, Neal-Bullen, Tim Smith and Petracca were other forwards who chimed in with multiple goals each.  But the star was Angus Brayshaw.  He had 37 possessions (22 kicks 15 handballs) 14 marks and 3 goals. It was hard to fathom why the Crows didn’t shut him down. Perhaps they tried and simply failed. Brayshaw was clearly BOG, with his kicking - by right or left foot -  propelling countless Demon attacks.  Strangely, he only got 2 Brownlow votes (Neal-Bullen got 3 votes) for the game which highlighted the bizarre system of the umps votes.  
 

The Dees had shown their ability, their contested footy superpowers and their attacking power.  We were on a high, with the finals a real chance and we couldn’t wait to see what the rest of 2018 brought us.  
 

Melbourne 23.8.146 defeated Adelaide 8.7.55

I loved this game,  'sons'... thanks for reminding me.

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On 5/3/2020 at 10:16 PM, Dr. Gonzo said:

I went to Vic Park once as a 10 year old in 1992 and stood in the outer with my dad and uncle (both Melbourne) another uncle (Collingwood) and his friend (Melbourne) when another Jako (Jakovich) kicked 7 goals after being dragged early and we ran over the Pies in the last quarter. I was too young or stupid to care about the Pies supporters and was cheering the Demons home and singing the song on the walk back to Hoddle Street.

Don't remember getting any dirty looks or worse, but my dad was keen to get out of there in a hurry. Shame to see grounds like that lost to history, one of the best hamburgers I've ever had was there too on the grill just inside the entry gate. Collingwood supporters have the reputation but the team who I have had the most issues with at the footy is Saints supporters.

Saints supports are a bunch of morons, In the 2006 elimination final the were out in force.

I let them know all about it though 🤣🤣🤣

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No.26 1990 Round 20 v West Coast Eagles at Subiaco WA i I

The Dees had had a very good year and at 13 wins 6 losses, we were set for another finals appearance.  The Eagles were in 2nd position, and had won their past 15 home games. The Eagles and their fans were arrogant.  But we had won the prior 4 games, we’d won the past 4 games against rivals the Eagles including beating them at Subi in 1989 thanks to a late Tommy Kavanagh matchwinner (so it was a possibility we could repeat the dose). 

From the opening bounce to the end, this match was physical and tough footy. There were 3-4 fights and altercations even before the opening bounce.  Watching it on TV still gave a sense this one was a grudge match status.   There were to be no easy kicks.  The Dees had a tough team under Northey and we stood up. 
We opened strongly with 4 goals to 1 goal by quarter time.  The midfield of Obst, Wilson, Tingay and Eishold (perhaps his best game) were getting on top. But Greg Healy had copped a head knock and ruled out early in the game and other players wore a few heavy knocks. This team had come together with most players around the 22-25 yo mark and were past the 50 game experience mark.  They were ready.  
By half time we’d kept a 3 goal buffer.  As in the prior game between the teams earlier in 1990, the Eagles struggled to hold Bennett. 
The Dees took advantage in the 3rd and stretched the advantage to 5 goals.  Danny Hughes was moved forward early in the 3rd quarter and responded with strong marks and provided a handy 2 goals.  
At the start of the last quarter we went out to a 8 goal advantage by the 15 minutes mark and it was game over.  This was an impressive four quarter effort.  Final margin was 36 points.  Bennett finished with 6 goals to again prove the Eagles main tormentor.  Stynes was a warrior in the ruck with an occasional spell with the “Duke”Earl Spalding. The backline of Lyon, Grinter, Brett Lovett and Steve Febey were exceptional.   

But the excitement hadn’t ended. In fact the thing about this game that sticks in my memory is the players coming off the ground and Brian Wilson and Rod Grinter giving it to the crowd and celebrating the win with the same toughness they’d displayed on the field. The Dees had shown they had grown up and could withstand the physical pressure and had the talent to match.   We weren’t afraid of anyone.  

Melbourne 21.13.139 defeated West Coast Eagles 15.13.103  

 

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Now it’s the top 25.  Some are based on my memory of the excitement of the day or the occasion.  There’s some good memories that will bring back a few smiles. 

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Posted (edited)

No.25 2016 Round 12 v Collingwood at MCG

Queens Birthday.  It’s unfortunate that’s it become our “Grand Final”.  But the rivalry is the magic that connects us.  The Dees had been starved of Queens Birthday celebrations since our previous win in 2007. So we were very keen to turn it around.  We had beaten the Pies in a 2015 late season round (after 8 years of losing) so we were confident we could finally win a QB game.  60,000 fans created a great atmosphere.  The late afternoon start meant a few relaxing drinks and an enjoyable “Big Freeze” event pre game but we were on edge. 
The Demons started on fire as we got a goal within a minute. But the Pies got on top and were two goals up.  Enter big Max Gawn.  Against Brodie Grundy, Gawn got our midfield into the game and we drove the ball forward.   Ben Kennedy (recruited from the Pies) was electric, creating havoc on the ball or forward.  Some Petracca magic got us excited, and a Gawny goal put us in front.  The Dees fans were going crazy.  We piled on 7 goals to 1 for the quarter to take a 26 point lead into halftime. What a turnaround.  
The 3rd quarter saw a tight arm wrestle but we kept a 5-goal buffer.  We were nervous but needn’t have.  Goals were added by the Dees before Watts got two goals to seal the game (as the Pies crowd headed for the exits) before Gawn fittingly got the last goal. It ended with the Dees getting a 46 point victory.    

Maxy was our BOG with strong performances from Viney, Kennedy and Bernie Vince. It was great to see Paul Roos celebrate the win as he had grown the team and this win confirmed our positive direction.  After many years of despair, we were able to celebrate at a Queens Birthday game.  

Melbourne 16.8.104 defeated Collingwood 8.10.58 

Edited by spirit of norm smith
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Interested in getting some opinions.  I didn’t have the 2008 come from behind win versus Freo as a top 50.  I was overseas in 2008 and 2009.  I heard mixed opinions from mates about the game.  The Captains Club crew.  Was it a fabulous moment to celebrate being 8-9 goals behind to win it ? With some Wona magic?? or a moment where one of the worst Dees teams in the last 50 years simply clicked for a half against an equally pathetic dockers team that kicked themselves out of the game. 

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Posted (edited)

No.24 1991 Round 20 v North Melbourne at MCG

This match ultimately saw the Phoenix of Allen Jakovich rise.   It was an amazing day that saw the Dees have a player with such charisma arrive once the football scene. 

The background to the match is worth noting.  We had been stung by a 20-game loss to the Kangas in 1990 yet recover the make finals and almost go all the way. Then we played them and got revenge through a 10-goal win in round 5 1991.  So we were confident but were battling it out with North to make the finals (Dees in 7th place on 10 wins 8 losses and Kangas in 4th place in 11 wins 5 losses).  North had just beaten the top of the table Eagles and had young gun forwards in Carey and Longmire.  
A loss here would probably make it very tough to make the final 6. 

The Dees opened on fire but inaccurate kicking for goal was proving costly. Jakovich has kicked all our goals (6) but we were behind 8.4 to 6.12. North’s full back Mick Martyn was unable to stop Jako who 6.4 up to half time.  Longmire also was proving hard to match as Dees defender Paul Bryce struggled for pace. 

The third quarter was the story of the day.  The Dees finally got on top with a 10-goal quarter.  It was highlighted by Jakovich’s soccer style goal over his head from 15 metres out. We were in shock.  We knew he was a talent. But that was ridiculous.  By 3/4 time, Jakovich had 10 goals.  Goal number 10 coming with a tight angle banana kick on the boundary line after the season. North were in disarray as Sholl and Brayshaw were tried on him. The Dees had marched to a 38 point lead. Through the amazing work of Stynes both in the ruck and around the ground, the midfield of Obst, Dyson, Stretch and Steven Clark has now got on top and were giving our forwards good supply.
The last quarter saw us calling for more Jako goals. But instead he nearly exploded.  A very very soft free kick was awarded against him and he let the ump know. Unfortunately despite a warning his temper and his mouth (and the Dees runner trying to stop him) led to a report for abusive language.  Jako missed a few chances but finally got goal 11 and our 20th goal.  We won by 52 points and our season was alive. Stynes and Jakovich were clearly our best, but Peter Rohde’s job to shutdown Carey also was very crucial to the victory.  
 

We enjoyed the win but couldn’t stop talking about the soccer scissor goal. Surely goal of the year was the common talking point.  Jako had the spotlight and we had a new star in the team. 
 

Melbourne 20.20.140 defeated North Melbourne 13.10.88 

Edited by spirit of norm smith
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