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  1. Well George on the Outer was on the outer again at Casey this morning, since the gates are locked to prevent the plague ridden populace from entering... Still got to observe through the fence, which is as good as we football starved individuals can get, so we will take it. I counted 40ish players on the track, with Harmes and Rosman doing rehab of some sort, mainly running, stopping and restarting type of exercise. What sort of injury that means...perhaps more of the medically trained posters can help. Now it was difficult to see who wasn't there, due to this fence previously mentioned, and the wearing of bibs at times. However these days they all have numbers on their backs, apart from one unidentified player. Still I couldn't see Ed Langdon out there, although he does wear an invisibility cloak, which prevents opposition players from seeing him during the game. Perhaps he was wearing it today? Not sure if Melksham was there, but given the numbers of Covid expemptions reported from other clubs this week, it was quite literally a healthy list on the ground. Observations: God awful music being played through the loudspeakers. Screaching girl bands and moaning rejects from the Voice, Idol or repetitive rap could only make the players listen intently to the coaches. You sure as Hell couldn't listen to that other rubbish! Apart from the usual warm-ups, kicking drills with the Mark Williams striped ball, and another with huge foam goal posts erected mid-ground to do what I don't know, there was one which really took the eye. It was virtually a full match type game, with umpires, but the speed was simply incredible. Switch, switch back and then some more saw the ball move at lightning speed around the ground and from one end to the other. If this style is introduced through an already Premierhsip side, watch out opposition teams. There was little fixed position as players roamed wide to create opportunity, and then even more. Difficult to describe, but the team with the ball would rip right through the defenders and only a misplaced kick would see possession lost...then that opposition would do the same in return. The poor umpires never caught up with the speed and were trying to whistle 20, 30, 50 metres behind where the ball was. The only downside was the goal-kicking , but I suspect it wasn't the aim of the drill. Still an excuse could be they have moved the goal-posts at Casey, and players seemed to be kicking to where they used to be. Standouts were Oliver, Salem and May. Oliver just steps through defenders and just keeps going and going. Just when he looks cornered, he just bursts out again. Salem the same, how no-one can tackle him is amazing, and he always keeps bobbing up with ball in hand to deliver accurately. May is well over his hamstring injury from the PF, and just kept dragging down mark after mark. Another that took the eye was Majak Daw, playing forward. Really strong marking and leading, he was a challenge to be able to control in the air for May, Petty and Lever. All the new recruits were there, but with the viewing curtailed it was difficult to focus on what they were doing or not. And when the rain started, this wimpy reporter thought better of standing alone and headed for home, leaving the players to finish the session in peace.
    74 points
  2. http://images2.naharnet.com/images/187054/w460.jpg?1466172426 Great report by George but before I get onto it, Adjacent Casey fields is a large lake which I'm reliably informed contains plenty of fish and I just wonder if the sign above presents as an even more challenging scenario. Agree with George re music, just and endless cacopheny of mind numbing techno crap. Dont know what it gives the players but who am I to argue given that,last year it resulted in a Premiership. One other thing George didn't add was the plague of Flies hundreds of them! Anyway on with the report! Weather was shizzen about 10 seasons in one day and like George under cover accomodation outside the ground is harder to find than Rocking Horse Sheeit! REHAB ROSMAN, SPARGO ( in Parts) HARMES and during training it appeared CHANDLER may have done a groin? SKILLS DRILLS AND MANOEVERS. Well covered by GEORGE but agree the match simulations were a thing of beauty, players are intinctively now confident to KNOW 1 Where to go 2 Who to go to as in selecting correct option 3 Skillful enough to execute precisely DRILL A WARM UPS DRILL B MATCH SIMS DRILL C KAMIKAZE PLAYER BLITZSKILL ( Players zone of have a couple of harrasers and deliverers need to pick correct target from multiple options and kick to player on lead DRILL D MORE MATCH SIMS DRILL E CLOSE CONTACT TACKLES DRILL F ONE ON ONE MARKING SIMS PLAYER WATCH Competition for places will be and is WHITE HOT!! Not only do the current 23 continue to train to high standards but the second tier are also training the house down, players such as MAJAK, MELKY, DEAKIN S, J SMITH, ADAM T, MITCH B, J JORDAN, TOBY B, are displaying the type of improvement that drives up standards. Perhaps the guy I'm most looking forward to seeing is LUKE DUNSTAN, Wow what a pile driver he is just relentless in his ball hunting ability, think Stephen Powell and youl get the picture. Jayden hunt looks lean and hungry as does Adam Tomlinson. THE NEWBIES In some drills I can just see why we chosse these guys all are profficient with skills and already seem to know and appreciate the work required to make it in an elite Football Club which is not only the oldest club in Australia but one where standards are being continually stretched , redefined and enhanced. One bloke who I didn't know had no number on his back but by Gee was he nippy and elusive with some KOSSY like tendencies. HIGHLIGHTS. 1 Tom Sparrow outmarking MAX in a one on one 2 Clarry recreating his victory salute with a uncannily similar goal which literally had a couple of players doing cartwheels TRAING VOTES 3,2,1 3 Clarry , honestly he just does what he likes at traing and is a class above 2 Jack Viney, gees has he improved as a footballer in my eyes 1 Tom Sparrow wow what a huge talent this kid is honerable mentions, Salem, Max, Bowey, Dogga, Kossy, May and others et al, just no passengers just all wheel drive turbo's that just do not let up everyone just shows something , what a Lovely sight to behold! cheers PF
    55 points
  3. Knightmare article rating 2019 draft choices (dated 29/11/2019): Melbourne Traded wisely and secured value in their trade with Fremantle. The move back allowed Melbourne to add pick 28 and a future fourth round pick without a meaningful move back down the order from pick 8 to 10. While Melbourne's trade looks on paper like value was acquired, their first two picks of ruckman Luke Jackson and small forward pressure specialist Kysaiah Pickett are arguably reaches. Jackson, a sub 200cm ruckman is athletic, plays with aggression and follows up well but was arguably not the best available player. Similarly, Pickett while the forward pressure he applies is of a best in draft standard and he has speed and is damaging with ball in hand, his low scoreboard impact and product makes him a difficult sell so early on. Trent Rivers, who Melbourne secured thanks to their trade with Fremantle represents strong value at what after bidding became pick 32. Rivers is a classy ball user off half-back who moves well and can push through the midfield as a ball winner. Grade: C Collingwood Improved their draft hand slightly in the latter half of the draft to increase their involvement without losing a lot. Jay Rantall represents strong value as a basketball convert with elite endurance who does his best work inside winning the contested ball, distributing by hand and moving through traffic. Oakleigh premiership captain Trent Bianco is a second selection who represents strong value as one of the best kicks in the draft and the most advanced outside player in the pool. Trey Ruscoe at 192cm with his versatility to play defence, midfield or forward, is a third solid selection with his skills, mobility, ball winning capabilities and the way he reads the ball in flight and takes marks. Though the question of whether Collingwood should have retained pick 51 to draft key forward Jake Riccardi rather than trade it to GWS who used the pick to draft the VFL's Fothergill-Round-Mitchell Medal is a question that will be asked given Collingwood's lacking key position stocks. Grade: A Note: Rantall has already been delisted
    17 points
  4. With acknowledgement to NP, my source outside the wire. B.Brown finished off drills well with his shots on goal. Sparrow was sharp all morning. Usual efficient work from Viney, Trac & Clarrie. Clarrie spent a bit of time one on one with Goody. As usual 1st day back the newbies only did half the session but they all did the running with ease and have good hands. Harmes, Gus, Lingers, Weids, Spargo, Hibbo, Melks, Rosman, Rivers, Fritta, all on light duties. The running at the beginning saw about 10 groups spaced out around the oval. After about 2 or 3 laps, the groups had not strung out at all like I have seen in previous years!!
    13 points
  5. I don't get why every event has the rubbish music, you go to footy training, cricket, local pool, shops and you get slammed with it. So annoying, nothing wrong with silence.
    13 points
  6. Sparrow is an absolute beast. After Jackson, he is the young player I'm the most excited about.
    13 points
  7. Interesting to see that 81% of respondents to the survey recognised that we are too good right now. God I’m loving being top dog for a change!
    12 points
  8. Ah yes... the academy zones. Given to us because the states in the north had an unfair advantage. A chance for us to develop some talent and get something back. Except when we do develop the kids the states in the north just draft them anyway. Seems really fair and worth our time and money. So yeah. Let not develop them too well so we can actually have access to them.
    12 points
  9. My brother had a paper round and back in the day he loved selling the Herald on a Saturday if North had a win as all the old blokes at the pubs after the match would tip really well. He used to take me with him because he would make way more in tips with a little sister in tow. One pub in particular, the Shakespeare, iirc in Dryburgh Street, had the same bunch of regulars. The old blokes would give my brother extra tips if he could get me to sing for them. So I’d (reluctantly) bust out a few lines of Oh My Darling Clementine, it was the only song I knew. And the tips would instantly double. Years later, as adults, we were reminiscing and I said, “I can’t believe you used to pimp me out like that!” He says, “Hey! You never had a problem with it while eating your weight in Eskimo Pies!” 😆
    11 points
  10. The Ashes is on ch. 7, fair enough. But they’ve got three other channels in 72, 73 and 76 on which to televise AFLW. I guess some people can’t go a night without Alaskan ice road trucking gold fever picking swamp junkyard overhauling oil digging storage wars and Down East Dickering 🙄
    11 points
  11. My fondest memory of a suburban football ground is that of the old Brunswick Street Oval, a picturesque ground with ancient grandstands and a brick fence. It was the scene of one of my first games which, despite being in the midst of a golden era for the Demons, turned out to be a narrow loss to the Lions which had previously been called the “Gorillas”. That was in 1957 when my cousin and I walked to the ground from Brunswick where we lived across the Merri Creek. Times were different then - we were just short of our 10th and 8th birthdays respectively. As the reigning premiers, it was a shock to lose to Fitzroy who had finished well down the ladder in 1956 but we always had trouble with them, particularly at their ground. Soon after, a rivalry began between the clubs because we were coached by Norm Smith, they by his brother Len. The ground was small and by the late 60s was no longer fit for purpose as a VFL ground and the Lions became nomads, moving to Princes Park (twice), the Junction Oval, Victoria Park, the Whitten Oval and eventually when they were forced to merge with the Brisbane Bears, to the Gabba where they tasted success but not as Fitzroy. The real Fitzroy lives and still plays at the Brunswick Street Oval in the Amateurs. They play in the same Division as my club and it’s always a thrill to head out there for a game against the Roy Boys. There’s only the old grandstand left, part of the brick wall, lots of trees around the perimeter, one of the best canteens in the Ammos and a friendly atmosphere. Perhaps the ghosts of some of their greats like Haydn Bunton Sr., “Butch” Gale, “Chicken” Smallhorn and Bill Stephen still lurk around the old grand stand happy in the knowledge that they couldn’t kill off the old Fitzroy.
    10 points
  12. Knightmare seems to love doing what he does. He gets notoriety from it and seems to enjoy watching the players too. I think it's very difficult to be a draft analyst without access to the clubs because you simply don't have the resources available to know any players other than the obvious ones. As a result you have a very strong bias towards the high production players in the mainstream underage competitions, and it's then easy to reinforce those opinions as those obvious players keep putting in good performances. But good, high production underage players aren't necessarily good AFL players, because the roles these players play at underage level (usually a ball winning midfielder) usually aren't the roles they will play at AFL level, as those positions are taken by the best players in the competition. The other part is that it can be very difficult to go against the grain by trusting your eye and risk looking stupid. As a result he just follows the consensus. Ranking players is really hard, which I think people underestimate. Once those on the internet come to a consensus it becomes very hard to break, and then people rank the success or failure of a team's drafting based on that internet consensus .... except that the internet consensus is not a reflection of reality. I don't think he has a very good eye for talent spotting, but I am sympathetic to his draft rankings because it is much harder to formulate than it appears (especially without using a reference, such as the internet consensus). I am vastly less sympathetic to his ratings of a team's drafting/draft grades because it reflects a lack of self-understanding of just how far away from reality he really is.
    10 points
  13. Driving the head into a tackle is one of my very pet hates, even more than the Selwood duck. It is extremely dangerous and will result in a broken neck if not stamped out, with the poor guy who has been in effect head butted being plagued with scorn and guilt. Still I wonder how well it will be enforced.
    9 points
  14. Reading some of Knightmare's rankings on previous drafts, he never seems to like taking risks. He is not alone in that regard. And he is a pundit, not an experienced recruiter with access to a lot more information. So a large majority of his top dozen or so picks in every draft are midfielders. He hardly ever sees a key position player, ruckman or small forward as worthy of top-10. Maybe he thinks of Brownlow medal votes, or he's been burnt by previous experience, as we all have. Hence he thought Jackson at 3 and Pickett at 12 were "reaches". He thought Green would be a far better pick than Jackson, and preferred Weightman over Pickett, listing "marking superiority" as a reason. The problem with never taking risks is that you are always "safe". Being "safe" can mean that you miss out of the players that will make a dynamic difference to your side, if the other building blocks (e.g. power midfielders) are well in place. In the 2019 draft, Melbourne didn't pick one midfielder. And what a draft it was!
    9 points
  15. #31 at first glance does not have an AFL ready body. I wonder if the body-size is overrated but rather what you do with it that counts.
    9 points
  16. Likewise ( since 1958 supporter every day week month season decade!!! ) so lucky I was able to travel to Perth to see it all live. ( from Brisbane where I live via 2 weeks "quarantine in SA' . Family in SA and Friend in Perth helped me with accom. And plenty of fun things to do along with some travel highlights. Best Holiday ( 3 weeks) in Aust. Of my life . Thank you everyone Thank you Dees!!
    9 points
  17. Lets not get ahead of ourselves. I'm just taking it one premiership at a time.
    8 points
  18. I'm a 40 year plus supporter who suffered through the horrible 70's 80's .......yeah, until now, and thought I was a broken, negative viewer, but this list and its MFC support staff have convinced me that we are about to enjoy the success that only a power club can bring. We have been set up brilliantly by our recruiters and developed perfectly by our coaches. It's been said that when the Dees win flags, it is in multiples, and I see absolutely zero reason to doubt that this will be the case with our current list, provided the hunger remains as consistent as our injury list. I'm looking forward to a few more flags before this bunch begins to disband.
    8 points
  19. He was/is a lovely man. I bumped into him in the CBD in 2010 with my son. He insisted on showing him his Brownlow Medal and suggested I take a photo of him wearing the medal. Legend in every sense of the word.
    8 points
  20. Every Saturday arvo my brother took me to the footy much to our mum’s disquiet, as she worried about my safety. Her reservation was justified since I heard and saw things that would disturb a 56yo let alone a 6yo. Thing is, she remained none the wiser. Pretty much every week my brother would have occasion to say, “don’t tell mammy about this.” One time at Victoria Park there was a Collingwood supporter a couple of rows behind us. She was hands down the most feral, filthy-mouthed piece of scum ever there was. She was literally screaming obscenities at the top of her lungs at anyone and everyone, with Collingwood players being the sole exception. And the language! I was hearing words that I never knew existed and to this day I don’t think I’ve ever met/heard/seen anyone, male or female, so disgusting. She was flanked by two huge Neanderthals, her meathead friends, so since everyone in earshot valued their lives, no one dared say a word. Nor even look at her. They all learned from my mistake: I foolishly turned to sneak a furtive glance at her early in the piece to which she responded, “what’re you [censored]in’ lookin’ at, ya freckle-faced, c**k sucking lil mole?!” And that was nothing compared to what she had to say about oppo players and the umpires! I was silent all the way home. When my mum saw me she was mortified. She turned to my brother and said, “what happened to her?! She’s as white as a sheet! She’s looks like she’s seen a ghost!!!” My brother, bearing in mind that if she knew the truth that’d be the last match to which he’d be allowed to take me, said, “Oh, she’s just kinda in shock, we just witnessed the most scintillating footy match ever!” 😆 That’s just one of many, many experiences that wouldn’t and couldn’t happen nowadays, but were commonplace back then.
    8 points
  21. Victoria Park was known as 'the zoo'. Somewhat disrespectful to animals I think.
    8 points
  22. I dont have room for any more merch...
    8 points
  23. I went to all these grounds. I remember seeing Hassa Mann‘s goal in 1964 at Glenferrie; I certainly remember the final round in 1987 at Western Oval. But strangely, one golden day was at Arden Street, the last round in one of the late 70s, we were getting thrashed and were expected to, and a North player attempted a dropkick. He flubbed it but it was still interesting. The weather was perfect, very early spring, and the day was just golden despite the result. I loved the old football. At 2.10 on a Saturday afternoon something like 10% of Melbourne’s population would go to the footy, which I think is extraordinary.
    8 points
  24. Perhaps Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture replete with canons to remind us of.... Bang Bang Bang !
    8 points
  25. It’s starting to feel like the success of the season is going to be based on reinfection likelihood. We are clearly in the transition from pandemic to endemic, so this year is going to be all about how young athletes react to being re-exposed. I’d suggest most players on a list in Melbourne and Sydney will have had Omicron by Round 1. It’s about what happens then, and that is still anyones guess. I’d also imagine WA might find it’s delay strategy potentially damaging to its football teams. *As an aside I’m on day 5 of having COVID. It was harsh, but it was very much the flu. I’m 43 but my younger friends (late 20’s) bounced back super quick and got it done within 3-4 days. My older parents (70’s) took about 6-7 days to move through it (all double dosed). I’m happy to answer anyones questions. 👍
    8 points
  26. Some people are comparing COVID to the Bubonic Plague but they had an oversupply of rats back then.
    8 points
  27. Part 3 – Top 100 Demons of the past 50 years 41-60 It’s interesting thinking that our success this year came from a time when the majority of players were homegrown talents, nurtured and developed after being claimed via the draft – a big thank you to Paul Roos who installed some genuinely good assistants and started progressive training structures that Goody has continued to follow. In the past we had been guilty of trying to buy our flag, a similar process to the way Carlton continues today with its outlays for Williams and Saad and Cerra. While there is no coin comparison with today, we paid record fees for Diamond Jim Tilbrook (around $20,000 to Sturt plus $5000 a year in 1971), Big Carl Ditterich ($62,000 from the Saints in 1973) and our Brownlow-winning pair Peter Moore and Kelvin Templeton, the duo came across reputedly on a combined $1 million in 1983. Of those players only one – Peter Moore - made my list and with just 77 games for us, he is hardly a club legend, although some of his games in 1984 were phenomenal. That’s why it’s so hard ranking players – how do we assess loyal servants who always chipped in for many years like James McDonald and Tony Sullivan against stars who shone brightly for short periods like Moore and Allen Jakovich. The other tricky conundrum is deciding where to rank players who still have many more years to go in their evolution – I ruled out our three youngsters Jackson, Kozzy and Rivers on a game infancy basis but others like Salem and Fritter and Lever still have key years ahead of them so may rise up my rankings in time. Finally we all have memories of great games by the club and that colours our thinking. For me, given that I had a few best mates who barracked for Hawthorn, there was no greater game than our win over the Dawks at Princes Park in 1984 – a bit like our breakthrough win over them in 2016. I almost put Peter Tossol in my top 100 list, based on this game, but to be fair, without watching that game, he’d be lucky to be in our top 200 of the past 50 years. It was great finding a video of that game recently – well worth a watch for Demonlanders. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzmtCfS5X_Y 41 Peter Moore 83-87 77 games One of only six Brownlow Medallists in our history, Moore came to the club at the end of 1982 with fellow Charlie winner Kelvin Templeton as Barassi tried to evoke a similar scenario to the 10-year rule that helped North’s rise. But given Moore was captain of the Pies in 1981 and 82 it was huge and when he lined up against his old side in Rd 1 of 83, a banner in the crowd read “Moore Filth”. The Pies predictably won by 10 points that day, Weid’s dad Mark had possibly his best ever day kicking five goals. Moore’s hamstring issues seemed to abate at the Dees (we probably had a better medical team than them back then) and we started to again see the athleticism of the 198cm tall ruckman, who was really more of a mobile ruck-rover. With his confidence back, he regularly tallied 20 disposals or more in 1984 on top of a few marking hot spells where he’d drift in like his son Darcy does now and just read the flight so much better than everyone else. The issue I have with the Brownlow is that game against Hawthorn in 1984. He got three votes that day, yet was beaten badly by an inspired Michael Byrne, a former Dee. Watch the replay and tell me how Gerard Healy didn’t get three-votes. The following week we were mauled by Essendon at VFL Park and I always blamed Moore for not really standing up and getting physical as many ruckman did in those days. But really I think I’m being a bit unfair with that memory as Moore just wasn’t that type of player – he was a beautiful runner who went on to become a lawyer. He had back issues early in 1987, so missed our final series revival. 42 Ross Brewer 72-78 121 games 196 goals A lanky 188cm half-forward from our then zone in Bentleigh, he topped our goalkicking three times and had a day out kicking seven goals against the Dogs in 1978. I have been desperately trying to find which game he scored a memorable soccer goal on a fast break. It was bucketing rain and so instead of picking it up just past the outer wing, he chose to soccer it and run after it. He was then about 35m out and soccered it again and then with his opponents rushing after him he opted to kick it off the ground once more and it slid through the big sticks. With his size he was very handy as the third tall, and later on even played a bit as full-forward before a knee injury in 78 led to him being offered up for trade to the Pies for Phul Carman and Wayne Gordon. I suspect that his much older brother Ian, a 1958 Pies premiership player, had gotten in his ears. Once he was fit, he played some pretty handy games for the Pies as well as two grand final losses to Carlton. 43 Greg Parke 68-73 119 games, 169 goals My first Melbourne jumper had No.26 on it – the reason Greg Parke. Parke was our star centre half-forward in 1972 kicking 63 goals, but he should have kicked many more – he just wasn’t a reliable kick like Peter McKenna or Peter Hudson. But boy could he mark it – he took 24 in one game in 1970. He had the most amazing sticky fingers and with blonde locks, would have been a favourite with the ladies as well as nine-year-old boys like me. One of the first games I attended was against the Swans at the MCG and he took 14 marks. He kicked seven on John Scarlett down at Kardinia Park that year. I don’t really know why he left for Bulldogs in 1974, I imagine it had something to do with payment given that most Melbourne players back then got little more than their MCC membership paid for and Parke was a full-time policeman like Rex Hunt in those semi-professional days. Sadly he died on September 25, 2021 – the same day that we beat the Bulldogs. 44 James Frawley 07-14 139 games Chipper was similar to his uncle Spud in lots of ways – I mean they both were hard to push off, they both were tough as nails and they both weren’t mega kicks. But there was one key difference for our Chip - he was pretty damn quick for a big bloke. That’s why after a rookie season playing mainly on the wing he was soon sent to defence and in 2010 was so effective that he took down Jonathan Brown and Brendan Fevola in a memorable win against Brisbane at the MCG. The All-Australian selectors were clearly impressed. Surprisingly though the 21-year-old didn’t go on to win any more AA gigs. Part of that was because of a serious pectoral muscle injury and part was caused by his disgust at looking the fool playing in the AFL worst defence for several seasons under Bailey and Neeld. As a result he was happy to switch to the Hawks in 2015 as a free agent – just in time for their final flag – a game in which he kept Josh Kennedy goalless in his prime. 45 Glenn Lovett 87-99 127 games, 74 goals I remember thinking back in the late eighties that G.Lovett might be the worst wingman we’d had in my time of watching the Dees. He just seemed so off the pace and error prone. But thankfully I was way wrong and the club was bang on the money giving him the No.6 as come 1991 he’d developed into a clever, strong tackling, precise kicking centreman who you wanted in the side. Given his dicky hamstrings (I reckon he had skins before anyone except Don Scott) he missed quite a few games, but when he played, we generally won – because he was ahead of his time in summing up a short kick to Schwarter or Lyon. His game in our semi-final win over the Dogs in 1994 was huge and he won our B&F in 1992. 46 Neville Jetta 09-21 159 games There are two Nev Jetta’s that played for Melbourne. The first was an innocuous small forward who played for five largely forgettable seasons before being delisted. The second Nev Jetta was spotted by Paul Roos, reinstated, and sent to play down back at a time when his accurate short kicking and evasive skills was a godsend. For the next four years, Nev was an icon at Demonland and his battles with fellow indigenous star Eddie Betts were legendary. Such was his popularity that the calls for his elevation to All-Australian status came every week throughout 2017 and 18 as he majored in shutting down opponents, but he had to settle for being an All-Star, our only representative in the pre-season 2020 game. 47 Greg Healy 84-93 141 games, 167 goals The younger, smaller brother of Gerard could match him with skills and looked destined for similar stardom when he began in 1984 and racked up six wins and 14 goals from his first seven games. But unfortunately, we copped Essendon at their meanest the next week and after an impressive first half by the teenager, Roger Merrett made sure he wasn’t a factor. Sugar also was caught up a bit in his brother Gerard’s departure to Sydney in 85, but he responded by winning the club B&F in 1986 – a year where he kicked 35 goals when resting in a pocket. He followed that up with a handy 1987, including a 40 disposal game in our loss to the Saints at Waverley – along with Robbie I suspect he was used by coach as an example of courage by Swooper, because that’s where our run to the 87 finals started. With Robbie retiring, he was made skipper in 1988 as a 22-year-old and his form started to peter out a bit with a dodgy Achilles not helping – even being dropped in 1990 before the decision was made to go with Dollars as skipper. 48 Graeme Yeats 84 -95 182 games, 45 goals Yeater was a lively little back pocket that we picked up from Prahran who was in and out of the side for his first three seasons and one who loved the punt – I think there were rumours he spent more time listening to his tranny at halftime than to the coaches. But in 1987, with Allen Johnson out with hamstring issues, Northey moved him to the wing and it proved a coup with his tank as good as any and his defensive discipline top class. He drifted forward and snagged a couple of goals in our semi-final win over the Swans, but sadly is best remembered for being one of three players (Simon Eishold and Tony Campbell were the others) to run into open goal in the preliminary final and miss sealers from about 35m out. He did get some compensation at Springvale in 1996, kicking the winning goal in the VFA grand final. 49 Bernie Vince 14-18 100 games Such was his popularity among fans in Adelaide, it’s said he was in tears when told he was being sent to Melbourne at the end of 2013. And if not for a bromance with Jack Watts, he may well have walked out after his first few training sessions. But Bernie, regarded as a bit of a lad in his early days at the Crows, quickly showed he was a great character and got down to business showing why they made a huge mistake. He regularly picked up 30 possessions (even a memorable 42 against the Pies in our 2016 QB win) but it was his duels with Patrick Dangerfield back in Adelaide that won over every Demon fan. I mean how good was he copping the local barrage and giving it his all to Danger. Roosy loved him and after a stellar 2015, he joined a very elite group having two B&F’s at two different clubs. His lack of pace and Olly’s rise, meant he was sent down back for much of his final two seasons under Goody, where his long-kicking made him ideal for our kick-ins, although he missed our 2018 final series with a shoulder injury which is a shame as he certainly deserved more reward for his efforts. 50 Lynden Dunn 05-16 165 games, 97 goals You only had to attend a few of our training sessions to get an appreciation of how important Dunny was to our line-up. He had a booming boot, but it was his booming deep voice that stood out and the manliness of it was even more important under Roosy given our youth policy. He’d taken a while to warm into my heart and I’m sure yours as his early years saw him struggle as a forward and the occasional stint as a tagging midfielder. But under Roosy his value rose and he was fourth in our 2014 best and fairest and made vice-captain. He was always slow but he seemed unfairly punished and put in the naughty box after our loss to St Kilda at Etihad in 2016. And it only riled me more when his replacement Oscar Mac was possibly the slowest AFL player we’ve had since Spud Dullard. The Pies realised Dunny’s kicking skills were elite and offered him a lifeline and he’d probably have a flag at the Pies to his name if not for injury late in 2018. 51 Jeremy Howe 11-15 100 games We were laughed at when we plucked him from Dodges Ferry in Tassie with pick 33, but like Robbo he became a human highlights reel and with our side so incompetent back then, the weekly Howey hanger watch became a must-do for Demon fans. He won our goalkicking in 2013 with 28, but Roosy wanted him more in the game and sent him to the wing and then half-back, and his papers were stamped “defender” where he turned on an intercept show in a shock win against Richmond that year. He spent five seasons with us before heading to the other side of the Olympic Park precinct, apparently to play forward under Bucks. But the Pies soon realised he was their best kick and only injuries have prevented him from becoming an AA defender. 52 Jesse Hogan 14-18 71 games, 152 goals There was something different about Jesse from the moment he walked through the door after being taken from Claremont as a 17yo in the 2012 mini-draft. He wasn’t allowed to play AFL that year but the hype built as he impressed in NAB Cup games and he won Casey’s best and fairest after kicking 39 goals in 15 games. Roosy arrived and suddenly had a wunderkind on his hands but bad luck in the form of a back injury meant we had to wait another year for Jesse’s debut. But when it finally came in 2015, it was worth the wait. He kicked 44 goals to win our goalkicking that year and his game on Anzac Eve against Alex Rance had to be seen to be believed. A four-gamer tearing apart a champion. With Angus also in action, it was exciting times even if we barely won. Jesse had that Allen Jakovich-style mystique too and walked around with the swagger of Wayne Carey. He was a beautiful mark, but he was never a great kick (barely making it 50m) and he was desperately unlucky in life with testicular cancer in 2017 on top of his father dying and then a navicular stress fracture ending his 2018 season early – a year in which he played some of his best footy early and was a key part of our six-game winning run that set up our finals breakthrough. With smoking issues and other off-field allegations, the club took a strong stance on what they perceived was a problem child and traded him to Fremantle. It turned out a smart move. 53 Angus Brayshaw 15- 119 games It’s been an unusual journey for our BBQ onion chef. An amazingly popular winner of our best first-year player in 2015, it looked like his career was over by 2018 as every bump to his head sent him to the dark room. His mum must have driven Goody insane with all her texting. But after emerging OK from a collision with Koby Stevens in late 2017 and with an improved tackling style that reduced contact issues, he became a major player in our 2018 revival, starting off half-back, moving to a wing and then by finals, Angus the midfielder was in full stride. Such was his rise that he came third in the Brownlow that year. Since then it’s been a bit tricky with the debate on whether he’s a pure mid or a wingman only overshadowed by the number of times on Demonland it’s been suggested he be traded to Freo to join his brother. The turning point came in our win against the Dogs in Round 11 when he stopped their outside run on numerous occasions and he repeated it in the granny – that’s why so many of us had him in the Norm Smith pole position at three-quarter time. 54 Brent Moloney 05-12 122 games A lot of Cat fans were devastated when Little Buddha departed for the Dees in 2005 as part of the Brad Ottens deal and it wasn’t hard to see why. A big-bodied midfielder he joined forces with Brock McLean and Col Sylvia to give us a tough, but youthful look that was tipped for greatness. Sadly he had shoulder and groin injuries in 2006 and missed our finals win against the Saints and by the time he returned, Neiter, Yze, White and Robbo were almost done. He continued to do a large part of the grunt work under Dean Bailey until that infamous trip down the highway in Rd 19 of 2011 turned things on their head. Beamer felt ill pre-game and did not play, a blessing of sorts given the 186-point loss. After winning the B&F and polling 17 Brownlow votes that year, he understandably would have thought captaincy of the club he supported as a kid was next. But Mark Neeld had other ideas, overlooking both he and Nathan Jones to go with generation next – Grimes and Trengove. But he did fire up on occasions in 2012 and I well recall the way he lifted us to one of our few good wins that year – against Essendon at the MCG. He was happy to join the Lions the next year. 55 Tom McDonald 11- 193 games Ok, he’s about to become a 200-gamer and it’s fair to say that he might be ranked a tad low by me. I mean how many above him could snag goals from the boundary like he did against Richmond and Port Adelaide in 2021. He was highly regarded as a backman under Roosy before kicking 53 goals in 2018 when Goody sent him forward in desperation. And he is a dead-eye dick most of the time, even from around 50m. But there have been hiccups along the way. His low-skimming passes from defence gave all Dee fans the sh..s and once turf-toe cut out his fitness advantage in 2019, he suffered a shocking fall from grace by the end of 2020, being shopped around with ANB. Thankfully there were no takers and after working his butt off pre-season and aided by a couple of injuries to key forwards, he was back in the ones and firing on all cylinders. A back injury cruelled his finals campaign but he battled on and stuck to his role. But as with many key forwards, especially one that Jeremy Howe enjoys using as a stepladder, there are some serious doubts on his longevity. 56 Ray Biffin 68-79 170 games 131 goals Everyone loved Biffo. Blessed with a beer gut, the Launy boy used to unflinchingly charge at the ball from full-back for almost a decade and every now and then would launch a torpedo from the kick-in goalsquare that would go 70m or out on the full. Then in 1976, Skilton sent him up the other end in desperation against the Saints and as a forward he proved a masterstroke – nailing 47 goals in the next 13 rounds as we suddenly looked like finalists. For the next three years injuries took hold, but when he played, he scored – even snagging five goals in his final game against the Pies in 1979. 57 Danny Hughes 84-90 124 games He was 20 when he came across from Port Adelaide in 1984 and is it too nasty to say he was a meat and potatoes footballer. Basically he was your typical tight-marking, give your opponent a clip over the ear type who could kick a pretty nice, long drop punt to clear the pressure down back. He played every game as our full-back in 1985, including a few spells in the ruck, and despite not cracking 20 disposals in any game won the best and fairest as the club unravelled under Barassi. Ask Gerard Healy, who averaged close to 25 touches every game that year why that happened? Anyway Hughes was mega dependable, albeit quite slow, and that’s why Swooper made what will go down in history as the most amazing tactical blunder in the 1988 GF, switching our man off Jason Dunstall pre-game and sending our lively wingman Steven Stretch back there. Danny ended up with just three kicks and two hitouts that day – I doubt he has watched the replay. He was back at full-back in 1989 and resolute for two more seasons before deciding to head home and be part of the new-born Crows side. 58 Rod Grinter 85-95 134 games 57 goals He spent the first two years as a lanky half-forward before Swooper sent him to defence where he made his name in the 1987 final series. Blessed with a thumping kick, he was more noted for his thumping white line fever style, dished out via the bump (Chris Mew will attest to that) or the swinging arm (Terry Wallace still probably has his lawyers on to it). He was the tough edge that most sides had, but one that we’d been missing and I’m sure that’s why his rise coincided with a successful period, albeit one without a flag. 59 Tony Sullivan 67-79 191 games If not for a goal against the Pies in 1970, the St Pat’s (Redan juniors) Ballarat recruit may have been in a rare 191-game goalless club. You can probably guess that he wasn’t a flashy, long-kicking half-back, but my childhood memories are that our No.4 was as reliable as they come, it’s just that it was mega hard to get his Scanlen’s footy card (I never really liked chewing gum anyway). Tony played for Victoria and was 188cm, which in those days made him ideal to play on the third tall. I think Big Carl, in his second stint, wasn’t a huge fan so he ended up playing in the VFA. 60 Andrew Obst 90-97 149 games The obstetrician took a couple of years of convincing before he left Port Adelaide, but when he came was just so professional in his tactics that he was quickly a fan favourite. He played every game in the shortened 1990 season and was one of our best in our memorable win over the Hawks in the final round. For the next seven years, he was always hard at it for a skinny bloke and was third in our 1996 B&F. A few nagging injuries saw him return home after ’97 and he won a couple of SANFL flags for Port in 98 and 99.
    8 points
  28. Or more likely from hoisting the cup multiple times. Lifting my arms to celebrate Bang! Bang, bang, bang leads to chronic soreness. Long may it last.
    8 points
  29. We all know Tomahawk can self test…
    8 points
  30. Please tell me this was done in slow motion, running towards each other with outstretched arms, before twirling around and falling into the sand together, as waves washed over the two of you.
    7 points
  31. 7 points
  32. I keep coming across twenty-somethings who’ve tested positive then had either ‘no symptoms’ or a couple of days cough. When I ask those if it was like the flu, they reply it was more like ‘a cold’. Different for different age-groups of course, but there’s undoubtedly a high number of those who’ve had the virus but haven’t been recorded as such. We are rapidly heading for endemic stage. Boosters will evolve to strain specificity, such as Pfizer’s ‘Omicron booster’ currently in the works. Treatments for the ‘illness’ will also evolve and improve. Putting aside the inexplicable attitude toward vaccines by some (a fractional percentage in Australia, thankfully), and the developed world’s greed-fuelled neglect of vulnerable countries, the global response to this pandemic is remarkable. Far from what it could be obviously, but compared to its obvious precedent, the Spanish Flu, remarkable nonetheless. All we need do now is redirect our vocational values system toward health and community (hospital staff on garbage wages are currently being slaughtered), and away from its frank obsession with ‘wealth accumulation’, and the future’s looking bright.
    7 points
  33. The yearly rule changes are terrible for no other reason than the first 3 or so rounds are spent with Dwayne Russell and his commentariat buddies burning my eardrums about whether the rule has worked/not worked/made the game better/made it worse, etc.
    7 points
  34. Love the crackdown on delaying play...if it actually happens. Hopefully, the instructions as to what deliberately delaying play means are clear. My pet hates are holding on to players who take marks or get free kicks, standing over said players preventing them from standing up or standing over the ball to stop the player from picking it up.
    7 points
  35. I understood jnrmac's post to mean that none of our Premiership team have retired or been traded.
    7 points
  36. Just got it home, will see if I can get it hung shortly
    7 points
  37. The last time i went to Vic Park was ‘92 We beat them, with Allen Jakovich kicking a bag. It was a heavy vibe waiting for the train at Vic Park Station. i still have the same scarf, that went to all those grounds, and was at Waverley in 1987 i wore it very proudly during the Grand Final
    7 points
  38. I was chatting to a Richmond supporter this week who reckons, with Dusty Martin back and fit, they might have one more flag left in them ... if it wasn't for Melbourne. In his words, the Tiges are on the decline while we are reaching our peak.
    7 points
  39. They all saw what we did to the next best teams in the comp. They know it's us .... Then daylight.
    7 points
  40. “..haven’t got any worse...” Lols!!!! I’d suggest we’ve gotten better, players improvement plus additions like Dunstan, Tomo etc back from injury. Plenty of competition for spots and room for growth from within this already incredible group.
    7 points
  41. I wonder If Trac surprised himself with our first goal. Off one step that was an incredibly powerful kick. It's no like it just made it either. Man that bloke has powerful legs. Which brings me to Sparrow. His goal was not too dissimilar. Given his age, I wonder if we have another CP on our hands. Tom Sparrow's efforts seem to stand out more every time I watch the replay. Such poise and presence for a young fella in a granny. When he didnt blaze away in that first minute of the last and pass to Bbb, was a moment when this kid became a permanent part of this team in my mind. To think he will continue to get even stronger gives us a very tough midfield.
    7 points
  42. Are you sure that was mud 🤔
    7 points
  43. The academies are a joke, the AFL is the governor of not just the league but the sport as well since it usurped this role from the ANFC. It is therefore the afls responsibility to manage development programs but they have delegated responsibility to the club's. And this was done as some kind of appeasement due to the northern state club's having their own academies which in themselves are a rort, particularly for the NSW club's. Now the non-northern state club's derive close to zero benefit as seen by us this year and this is only going to get worse as the AFL expands the rules so that club's can't match bids within the first 40 picks - so what is the point? Get rid of all academies, I'd even be happy to get rid of the father/son rule (which is nice but an anachronism) and move towards a pure draft. Footscray getting back to back number 1 picks while making a GF, the Swans getting Heeney, Mills, Gulden, Campbell et al while being perennial finalists - the system is a joke and the AFL is trying to have a bob each way. A pure draft is the only way to go in a league focused on parity/equalisation.
    7 points
  44. Well done George and Picket. Great read for those who want to read about the Premier. How good is it being able to say that?
    7 points
  45. Huge thanks to George and ‘fence’ for bringing the session alive in my lounge room.
    7 points
  46. Discourage X factor? A large dose of X factor took us from 19 points down to stunned and demoralised oppo in 10 minutes of football. Worker ants like ANB, Harmes, Spargo, are well and good (not discounting Harmes' little bit of X to start the riot) and every team needs them, but they don't give you bang bang bang to destroy a good team.
    7 points
  47. Excellent thanks, I might possibly be able to get down to Casey Friday if all goes well. Cheers P.F
    7 points
  48. Make no mistake. We were hunted throughout the whole of last year. Every-one wants to take down the undefeated mob sitting on top of the ladder. And with our reputation of choking when the pressure's applied they all thought they could be the ones to do it. This year we need to put that reputation to rest once and for all. Put the foot on their throats early and keep it there.
    7 points
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