Twelve months ago, the Collingwood Football Club trudged off the ground, having fallen over in the Preliminary Final by one point. They came hard at the Swans, and threw everything at them, before Sydney managed to hold on and advance to the Grand Final.
Another Prelim… another disappointment.
If you paid attention to recent form coming into this game, the Magpies would have been worried with what was unfolding. The GWS Giants were on the warpath, claiming scalp after scalp as they muscled their way firstly up the ladder, then into the finals, and finally into the final four. With wins all over the country, coming to the MCG held no fear for them, and as they kicked four goals in the second quarter whilst holding the Pies goalless, it looked as though that momentum wasn’t stopping in the penultimate game of the year.
But the Pies don’t go away like other teams might. They don’t just capitulate and limp off like a wounded animal. They fight back!
This Collingwood team loves to scrap, and if you take the game up to them, damn it, you know they’re not going to go quietly.
And that’s exactly what happened.
They call the third quarter the “premiership quarter” for good reason. Okay, look I’ll be honest… I don’t know what the reason is, but when a team stamps themselves on a contest in the third quarter, I like that it’s called that. It sounds great. With their backs to the wall, following Toby Greene’s goal to open the second half, Collingwood settled, composed themselves, and started their fightback.
A five-goal to-two third quarter gave Collingwood a slender lead heading into the final quarter, and in a pulsating display of contested footy, the umpires threw away the whistle and let the boys play.
It was glorious!
I’m sure there will be some who lament the missed free kicks along the way. I am positive that you reading this could point out three or four blatant free kicks that could have, or should have been paid.
But they weren’t.
The game was left up to the players to decide, and if you threw your hands out looking for a free kick down the stretch in this game, you were sorely disappointed.
GWS were mighty. They battled like warriors. But Collingwood were mightier, and in the end, the 2022 result was reversed, with the Pies emerging victorious by a solitary point, as tears flowed, heart rates went back to normal, and celebrations for one team were only matched by the lamentations of the other.
A massive number of things to get through in this review – yeah, this is just the intro. Let’s jump into The Mongrel’s Big Statements.
Oh, what the hell? A Mongrel paywall? Yep, I believe my work is worth twenty cents per day. If you don’t, that’s fine – this one will remain locked and go into our Premiers ebook… assuming the Pies win, right? Catch ya when I post some free stuff. Of course, you’re welcome to join/rejoin to read immediately