This is it.
THE PEOPLE’S ROUND.
Or, as it’s known in Geelong since 2016, the last game of the season before ‘Whacky Wednesday’.
Richmond vs Geelong @ The MCG, 7:50pm AEST
5,000 people and 90,000 Tigers and Cats fans will flood the MCG for yet another snout in the trough Prelim Final, and looking back in time, the teams’ Round 12 meeting could be best described as the perfect intersection of the time in the universe where Richmond’s injury crisis and Geelong’s blistering start to the year both peaked.
After going goalless in the opening quarter, the Cats kicked 15 consecutive goals after Quarter Time and won by 67 points to go to 11-1, as Dimma was forced to play characters with names like ‘Garthwaite’, who probably enjoys lasagna.
This time around, the Tigers have won 10 straight, and they’re pretty much only missing Alex Rance (As they have for 6 months) and Sydney Stack from their best 22.
Unsurprisingly, with all these factors in play, they’re the biggest raging favourite to win the flag since Richmond in 2018.
Meanwhile, in Australia’s answer to Detroit (Geetroit, it rolls off the tongue), Chris Scott pulled the master stroke of bringing in a ruckman to help the structures by being a human sacrifice to Nic Nat and Tom Hickey, and it worked, as the Catters overran West Coast in the last quarter, but the far bigger headache emerged when the Good Bloke Defence failed to overturn Tomahawk’s suspension for striking.
Shame on you Michael Christian- Why did Tom not receive the very same ‘Grew Up On Or Around A Dairy Farm’ discount that you gave Ben Cunnington all bloody year?
As a result, currently leading the way to replace the big fella appears to be none other than Lachie Henderson, who has played all of 5 games in an injury riddled season, just ahead of James Parsons, Gary Rohan, and something called a ‘Darcy Fort’.
Chances are Scotty will ignore them all, and pull the time honoured ‘Swing Harry Taylor and Danger forward’ trick.
It makes me think that Henderson coming in, starting as a key forward and dominating would be the most unlikely thing to happen in a final since the last time Richmond were dominated in a final by a player nobody takes seriously.
Mason Cox- The funniest player to haunt Richmond in a final since Nick Duigan in 2013.
Just like Elton John, Tigers fans have gone to sleep every night for the past year dreaming about Cox.
Barring anything unforeseen before Friday evening, I feel like the Tiger Army will get the job done, simply because this is the even-numbered weekend where the cosmic forces of the universe conspire to make Geelong lose, regardless of the quality they’ve still got out there.
On another note, well done to Dylan ‘Frank’ Grimes, or Grimey as he likes to be called- 150 games, after not even looking like he was going to get to 50 with the state of his hamstrings in 2013.
Collingwood vs GWS @ The MCG, 4:35pm AEST
Two days out from one of the Top 25 most important games of the year, and the AFL really can’t win with Toby Greene’s Appeals Board hearing.
If Toby gets off, the nuffies shall loudly declare it’s because the Giants are the AFL’s Orange coloured Red Army formed in a focus group, manufactured to win flags and subvert the people of Sydney to the will of General Secretary Gil-bachev.
If he inevitably fails, it’s because former Magpie Shane Wakelin was on the Tribunal panel, and that the league want the brazillians of pence that will come from a Collingwood-Richmond Grand Final.
The Giants have loaded up the QC shotgun, armed the 35th Army, and have gone south to argue that the Tribunal acted unreasonably.
Hey comrades, you know who else acted unreasonably?
Your little Alfred E. Neuman lookalike with a Hopoate-esque fetish for sticking his fingers in people’s eye regions.
Personally, I hope Toby gets off, just so Abbotsford and the surrounding suburbs can burn down in anger a few days early.
Obviously since Tuesday, as if things weren’t tough enough for the Giants, Lachie Whitfield randomly had his appendix removed and won’t play, because that’s what players do on their days off.
After not quite able to
gouge gauge how this game would go, I’m starting to think Collingwood could be looking alright to qualify for another Grand Final failure.
Speaking of the Pies, there’s still uncertainty about who replaces Levi Greenwood, who suffered the least memorable ACL tear of 2019, while Bucks used the week off to throw a Hail Mary so deep, that Jordan De Goey ended up in Germany (Eat your heart out Roger Staubach), to have his hamstring fixed by the same man who fixed Bono’s back, Dr Hans…
Hold on, is this right?
Hopefully he isn’t as nefarious as the last German named Hans.
Goat’s blood- If it worked for Max Rooke and Dylan Grimes, it will probably work for Jordan.
Of course, the last time the teams played back in Round 18 up in Sydney, the Giants pulled the rug out and kicked 8 goals to 1 in the opening quarter, before beating up the Pies to the tune of 47 points.. Jeremy Cameron kicked 6, and funnily enough, Toby was captain that day.
This time around, it’s at the MCG, which to GWS is what Afghanistan was to the Soviets, they don’t have Coniglio, Ward or Whitfield, and they probably won’t have Greene.
The Pies have John Noble.
Either way, like most Giants games, it’s going to be brutal.
So the Cats and Giants will have appeared in the Prelim Finals 3 times out of the last 4 years… and yet they’ve never played a final against one another.