AFL

Tuesday Tithbits: 23rd August

On to Tuesday, featuring at least 9 posts about CAAAAAARLTON:


I’ll be in some part of Sydney from Wednesday to Monday

I do have one thing in mind to do while I’m there, and it involves this newspaper article from 1916, regarding my great-great grandfather sending a message in a bottle from Europe to Bass Strait during the war:

Glebe won’t have seen anything like this since Balmain and South Sydney had them kicked out of First Grade.


The tale of my Two-Game Win DOUBLE on Thursday and Friday

Because I would’ve gone for The Treble on Saturday, but I had commitments behind the bar.

Anyway, it started on Thursday when I teamed up with the South African colossus James ‘Fat Jack’ Jackson, fresh off our first win as a pair the previous week, and first up we played the always helpful Andy Lill and Heather ‘Pryceless’, and if you’d like to know a true story, Andy showed me the ropes of bowls when I first started playing Jack Attack 5 years ago.

It goes to show you that time is a flat circle.

In a tough old game with plenty of quality bowls, the JJs were 3-6 behind with 3 ends to play, then we picked up a 3 to tie the scores with 2 ends to play, followed by another 2 shots to lead 8-6 into the last end (If Andy and Heather picked up 2 they would’ve won on countback), and against all odds I actually managed to get a bowl in the head, Andy was off an all 4 bowls, Fat Jack trailed the Jack and gave us a bit of cover, Heather couldn’t respond and the Springbok-Wallaby alliance won the game 9-6.

Andy on the mat
The last end

Next up we played Jean and John, which meant every player on the rink started with J, a fact that caused us a great amount of joy as we kept saying that the team starting with J was in the lead.

In another back and forth game, myself and Fat Jack once again trailed (6-7) with 3 ends to go, but we took the lead with 2 shots on the 9th End to lead 8-7 with 2 ends to play, then on the penultimate end, Jean and John were holding 2 in amidst a host of short bowls, but on his last bowl James got one to land jack high, John missed James by a Maxwell Smart measure (THAT much), giving us a 9-7 lead + the ends countback 6-4, meaning Jean & John needed 3 shots to win.

So on the last end, we planted 2 bowls on the jack and stacked up the back bowls, Jean & John put a few short bowls in to put themselves under duress, and with the situation extremely desperate, Jean had to go for a drive, which hit the jack ‘quite’ flush, but it finished up two metres from the ditch, Jean & John had no catchers to speak of, and the best they could hope for on the last bowl was 1 shot.

In summation, JT and Fat Jack picked up 2 shots and won the game 11-7, and I would note I’d played Jean and John twice previously (With different partners) and lost both games on the last end, and you can now feast your eyes on a piece of history:

Then on Friday I teamed up with my Division 2 skip Brett Adams, who had asked me the previous Friday if we were keen to play together once more (A clear yes was my answer), but me being me I thought he was talking about the Friday Jackpot Pairs….

Brett was actually talking about the upcoming Pennant season, but regardless we were locked in to play in 7 days time.

From a full field of 16 pairs, first up we drew one of Manning’s gun Tuesday Premier League ladies Robin Angel and her sister Jen, a new bowler who I played a few weeks ago, and I’d say Jen’s in good hands if she ever takes up the game long term, given her sister is a Premier League talent, as is her brother-in-law, big Joe Angel (Who played with Jen’s husband Ian).

Funnily enough, the game started much like my first pennant game with Brett back in March, as we set a long end on the 1st End, but this time around it was Brett who put too much weight on his shot and sent it into the ditch…

Much like yours truly back in March, the main positive was his grass was pretty good.

That end finished with Jen gazumping us by landing 2 bowls on the jack and still only holding 1 shot as I somehow held on to grab 2nd, but the dastardly duo of JT and Adams steadied and led 7-5 halfway through the game, and despite giving away a 3 after a botched drive, we subsequently dropped the hammer with some textbook pairs play and had the game wrapped up 14-5 with an end to play, as the yellow strip on our bowls (As you’ll see below) left several people suffering epileptic fits.

In an unrelated storyline, given these are intended to be SOCIAL bowls and the result was beyond doubt, Brett decided to be sporting and gave Robin and Jen a guide on how to play the drive, which was demonstrated beautifully on the last end when the sisters were holding 2, but Brett sent the jack out the back and put us up 2 shots, but Jen had obviously listened to Brett and gave him a taste of his own medicine, coming in straight up the guts and taking the jack:

Yellow strips everywhere…. you’ll suffer some form of ailment when Brett or myself bowls

So it finished 14-6, and with the winners playing the winners in Game 2, we could’ve played any number of 1st Division or Premier League players, but we got a bit fortunate and played two staples of the Manning 5th Division team, ‘The Mayor of Manning’ Grahame Maples, and Josh Kennedy’s No.1 fan, Rick Renton, who will probably be playing Full Forward for West Coast next season.

Perhaps unsurprisingly given the differences in skill level, the game was a tad one-sided, specifically from the 2nd End when Brett landed a drive so perfect the jack went out the back straight to 4 of our catchers and we picked up a 6, followed by a 4 on the 4th End, and by the 5th End it was 14-0 and pretty much game over.

I will say this though, the game would’ve been much more lopsided were it not for some fantastic bowling in the last couple of ends from Grahame and Rick, because there were at least 3 ends where we had at least 3 bowls within 2 feet, only for one of them to just plonk one in and hold shot.

In fact, one of those shots from Grahame finally got them on the scoreboard, as Brett drove the jack into the ditch, only for Grahame to sit his bowl perfectly on the edge of the ditch, similar to this classic shot from the pipe-smoking legend from England, David Bryant:

After that, it was relatively peaceful through to the finish as myself and Brett won 17-5, although we did give away a 2 on the last end after promoting one of Grahame’s bowls into the count….

But it didn’t cost us anything, as we claimed 1st overall and $100 cash as the best 2-Game Winner on 37 points, just 1 point (The equivalent of 1 end or 1 end of 4+ shots) ahead of Liz Matthews and John Andrew in 2nd, and I’ve kept both the scorecard + the envelope and had them framed in the front room, because how often am I going to claim 1st Overall in a cutthroat event like the Manning Jackpot Pairs:

And the best part is, WE’RE BACK IN THE WEST AUSTRALIAN

Funnily enough I played with Margaret Booth the previous Friday and we couldn’t hit water, let alone the rink!

Always great to be named in The West Australian, right next to stories about Nic Naitanui’s personal life, and with the way things went on Friday, I might just be able to get another guernsey with Brett in September.


The return of the AFLW for 2022, Part 2

Some exciting contests ahead for Season 7, as the AFLW finally achieves numerical parity with the AFL, with all 18 teams now having representation in the men’s and women’s games.

Some Round 1 highlights:

Carlton vs Collingwood on Thursday night at Princes Park, as they attempt to replicate the drama of Sunday at the MCG

Grand Final rematch between Adelaide and Melbourne on Friday evening, with the Crows no longer having Erin Phillips due to the entry of Port Adelaide.

Hawthorn vs Essendon in their AFLW debuts at Marvel Stadium, after both clubs had superb VFLW seasons (Essendon were minor premiers + premiers and Hawthorn were 2nd on the ladder).

And the rest I don’t care about.


After the shitshow that was Ben Rutten’s sacking and the failed pursuit of Alastair Clarkson, Mark Thompson said this about the Essendon Football Club 9 years ago and it still rings true

Forget about what John Worsfold said in a press conference in 2020, Bomber Thompson went on Footy Classified right around the time the AFL handed down the punishments for the Supplements saga in 2013, and wait for the part where he talks about the board and the football department not being good enough:


Josephine Tewson, aka Elizabeth from Keeping up Appearances

When I was much younger, one thing that left a lasting impression on me was my pop’s love of a certain British sitcom called Keeping Up Appearances and the exploits of society’s greatest social climber Hyacinth Bucket, so much so I’ve still got a heap of the old DVDs of the show, and it popped up again after the news came through that Josephine Tewson, aka Hyacinth’s long suffering neighbour Elizabeth, died last Thursday aged 91.

Of course, there were many great gags on Keeping Up Appearances, among them Onslow’s backfiring Cortina, Onslow smacking the TV to turn it on, Hyacinth being mistaken for the Chinese takeaway, Onslow and Daisy’s dog barking at Hyacinth, and Elizabeth would always get invited around for tea and biscuits with Hyacinth, get nervous, and smash the Royal Doulton with the hand painted periwinkles.

So many great actors from the show are no longer with us; Clive Swift (Richard) died in 2018, Geoffrey Hughes (Onslow) died in 2012, both Roses (Shirley Stelfox and Mary Millar) died of cancer in 2015 and 1998, but thankfully we’ve still got Judy Cornwell (Daisy), David Griffin (Emmet) and the perfectly cast Dame Patricia Routledge.

Goodness me, it’ll be a cold day in hell when Patricia Routledge leaves us.


People who say Carlton lost to Collingwood and missed the Finals are only partially correct, because Carlton DID defeat Collingwood to make the Finals

In the VFL.


On a historical note, with Charlie Curnow winning the Coleman, Carlton became the first team in 121 years to have different players win back-to-back Leading Goalkicker/Coleman Medals

Obviously the tally of goals won by a Coleman Medal winner has declined dramatically in the last 15 years, but that is a heck of an achievement to do what no club has done since the first year of Federation in Australia…

It’s almost as impressive as missing the Top 8 after being there for 22 weeks.

In fact, I can say with certainty that prior to Carlton with McKay and Curnow, the only other club to draft 2 Coleman Medalists and have them on the field together were Lance Franklin & Jarryd Roughead at Hawthorn in 2013, after Roughy won that season’s Coleman.

Still, the only games Franklin and Roughead played together after they were both Coleman winners were the 2013 Preliminary Final and the Grand Final (They kicked a combined total of 4 goals in 2 games), and after that Buddy went to Sydney.

Of course, there’s been multiple examples of Coleman Medal winners playing alongside each other, like Peter Hudson & Leigh Matthews at Hawthorn in the late 1970s after Hudson came back from Tasmania, Jonathan Brown and Brendan Fevola had an ill-fated season together at Brisbane in 2010, and Tom Hawkins & Jeremy Cameron have played together Geelong since 2021, but two Coleman Medal winners being drafted by the same team has now only occurred twice throughout history.


While we remember Carlton’s collapse, let’s remember that St Kilda also missed the finals despite being 8-3 and 4th after Round 11

Then again, St Kilda fail every year, so them going to crap isn’t as funny as Carlton.


People having a go at the Finnish Prime Minister for partying are nonces

If my understanding of Finnish people and partying is correct, Sanna Marin was only warming up for the main event, because Finns can party enough and drink enough grog to kill a family of Siberian Tigers, and if you want an example…

A certain Mr Kimi Räikkönen once went on a 16-day bender after finishing 2nd in the 2013 Bahrain Grand Prix, sobered up in time for the Spanish Grand Prix, and finished 2nd in Barcelona without feeling a thing.

Don’t believe me?

Here’s the story.

From Kimi Raikkonen’s Beyond the Grid episode in 2019

And you know what years of partying did for The Iceman?

It made him a World Champion.

And not just a world champion, he dragged a Ferrari to a World Championship.

You know how many Drivers’ Championships Ferrari have won since Kimi?

NONE.

BECAUSE KIMI WAS A PARTY GOD.

Ironically enough, Sanna Marin is married to a man named Räikkönen.

It’s all in the name.


Speaking of Formula One, the Belgian Grand Prix is on this weekend, which means there’s only 5 more days until Ferrari manage to lose a race on their own accord once more


Some say Verry Elleegant is still yet to finish that Group 1 at Deauville

That’s one way to prick a bubble, ranging up to a bunch of supposed mules from France and getting windburn.


Carlton were 8-2 in more ways than one

They started the year 8-2 after 10 games…

Then they kicked 8 goals in the 3rd Quarter on Sunday, and 2 in the other three.


Outside of the obvious goals from Kosi Pickett and Jamie Elliott, plus the 6 behinds in the 4th Quarter, here’s some forgotten moments that cost Carlton a Top 8 spot

Remembering that in the final wash-up, Carlton missed the Top 8 by just over a goal on percentage over the course of a 22 game season.

I won’t include Round 3 against Hawthorn where they were 40 points up and were pegged back, because Jack Silvagni kicked a late goal and won them the game by a point.

Round 4: 2.5 in the last quarter against the Gold Coast (Percentage).

Round 5: 2nd Half collapse against Port Adelaide, leading by 50 points just before half time and only winning by 3 points after Port almost totally ran over the top (Percentage)

Round 6: Gave up a couple of late goals to Fremantle in the last 5 minutes when the sting had gone out of the game (The Dockers were 20+ points ahead)

Round 10: 38 points up at Half Time against Sydney after a 9 goal 2nd Quarter, but only kicked 3 goals in the 2nd Half as the Swans cut the final margin down to 15 points (Percentage)

Round 11: Jack Silvagni’s missed snap with a minute to play against Collingwood, as the Magpies held on by 4 points.

Round 13: Goalless in the last quarter against Essendon, although in fairness to the Blues they only gave up 4 behinds in the last quarter.

Round 16: Terrible kicking at goal in the 2nd Half (4.11-35) against St Kilda costs them the win (10.18 to 14.9)

Round 20: The entirety of the Adelaide game, which is truly where the rot set in for missing the finals.

Round 21: Kick 8 goals to 1 in the Final Quarter against Brisbane to cushion the blow of another defeat, then allow the Lions to kick 3 cheap goals in the last 3 minutes, costing them somewhere in the region of 1.5%.

And we know about the last 2 weeks.


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