Monday, May 05, 2008

It's going to be a long, long season.

So, Essendon.

We lost by 68 points last night. And I know we have our three best players out. Fletcher, Lucas and McVeigh. Backline, Forward and Midfield, shot. We played with seven players who had played less than ten games last night, but it wasn’t the younger players I was disappointed with. It was the older players who I felt let the side down. Mcphee should have come into his own by now, if he is going to be anything other than a liability. Lloyd stood up well, but needs to show more leadership. It was lovely to not cringe when the number 23 came within vision, and it was nice to see a bit of run about the boys. It bodes well for the future, even it means at the moment I’m sitting there wishing I had never met Tim Watson*

And umpiring. I don’t normally bitch too much about the umpiring, because as long as decisions go the same way for both sides, I don’t mind too much. If there’s a particularly cretinous decision I’ll get a little vocal, sure, but I try not to buy into the “maggot” thing, because it detracts focus from the game.

But the first quarter was easily the worst umpired quarter I have seen in memory. Holding the ball seems to be a rule the umpires have forgotten about. Now, I am the first to get annoyed at people who yell out “Ball!” within a millisecond of a player being tackled, and especially if there was no prior opportunity, but last night there were players tackled twice by different players and still the umpires didn’t pay it. And in the same quarter, one particular umpire seemed determined to have as much impact on the game as possible. Which I hate. I wish they’d just let the game be played and stop trying to impose their will on it. And I’m not being one-eyed and saying it’s all one way, because there were decisions that went our way, or didn’t go Port Adelaide’s that should/n’t have.

And good on the two Matthews (Lloyd and Knight) for standing up and saying something to them. They have, by the rule book, the right to, but they knew they would probably be fined for it. All well and good. When you send them the cheque, boys, attach a copy of the rule book, and the number of a good Optometrist.

*The reason I support Essendon is because one day, early after we had moved to Melbourne, I met Tim Watson at a K-Mart in-store thing. There was a handball competition, and I sucked. Tim spent probably twenty minutes teaching my brother and myself how to handball, so when the time came to choose a team, there could be only one choice. Plus, you know, I thought he was cute.


Jeremy said...

And Melbourne won.

Oh, how the tables have turned.

Keri said...

Tables have turned? We've been shit for quite a few years now, Jeremy. Not on the scale of Melbourne, since we've won a premiership in recent history, but shit nonetheless.

And when did you become interested in AFL? Next you'll be attending Test Matches and arguing about LBW's.

Jeremy said...

No, I won't. I simply cannot envision a set of circumstances in which I could conceivably learn to appreciate cricket.

Keri said...

The day will come, Jeremy, the day will come.