GWS v St Kilda - The Good, Bad and Ugly

“Can’t complain…”

Those were the parting words from Jake Carlisle in his post-game interview after he failed to take a mark that would’ve afforded him a shot at goal to win it. I'm sure a few people could complain...

We saw our first draw of the season as the Giants stopped to a walk in the last quarter and the Saints almost pinched it in the dying seconds.

Here’s the Mongrel’s good, bad and ugly.

 

THE GOOD

Seb Ross

The Saints needed a lift in the last quarter, and it was Ross that gave it to them. He was responsible for four scoring shots in the last quarter, directly assisting on three goals.

His instinctive handball to Jack Billings gave the small forward a shot he didn’t have time to think about. Billings threw it onto his boot and drew the Saints that little bit closer.

He then found Mav Weller 45 out, who converted, and minutes later, he was the one who went long and found Ben Long on the boundary. Long ran around and slotted a great goal.

Finally, it was Ross again with a booming kick over the back which gave Jade Gresham every chance. He missed from 40 under pressure, but Ross was the one providing the opportunity. Great last quarter.

Phil Davis

He was the original young backline star to leave the Crows, and geez you’d be happy he did so if you’re a Giants’ fan.

He was a defensive beast today. Strong overhead (though his fist over the line in the last when a mark was begging to be taken was strange) and very reliable at ground level, he anchored the GWS defence that made the bigger St Kilda forwards look ineffective for most of the game.

Davis had two huge spoils on Carlisle as the game wound down. One will be remembered more than the other, but both were worthy of mention.

While we’re on GWS defenders, I won’t give him his own section, but Aiden Corr’s game in nullifying the returning Tim Membrey was excellent.

Brett Deledio

I was so pleased to see Lids back in form. Though he drifted out of it a bit in the last quarter, he was one of the Giants’ best all day.

His delivery was impeccable except late in the game when he missed a target at 50 in the third quarter. Had he hit it, the goal beckoned. It’s unfair to focus on that, however, given his consistent effort that steadied the Giants rebounding out of defence many times over the course of the day.

He finished with 29 touches to be equal top of the GWS disposal count.

Nathan Brown

He was Jonathon Patton’s master in this game. I tossed up whether I placed Patton in the ‘Bad” or Brown in here, and opted for Brown in here due to his great body work and consistency. If Patton was bad, it was Brown who made him look that way.

He had only four touches for the game, but he held Patton, one of the game’s most imposing figures irrespective of his recent form, to nine disposals and four marks, with more than a few of them collected far from goal. It was a great defender’s game.

 

THE BAD

Jeremy Cameron’s set shots

If you’d like to see where the game should have been won, check out the scoring shots. The Giants kicked 9 goals and 19 behinds. The worst of these misses belonged to Cameron.

His job is to finish the good work of those up the field, and he failed to do that today. He missed from 40 early in the game, and did it again in the second, only from closer. They were the sort pof goals that would’ve put some distance between the teams early, and made the Saints comeback all the more difficult.

Then there was the third quarter miss. Again, marginally closer. Again, terrible result.

Cameron’s kicking at times this season has been well below par. It needs to be addressed.

14K on a Saturday afternoon

Come on saints fans – where were you? The side finally shows up and puts in everything they have, they claw back from three goals down and have a chance to win it as the clock winds down.

And they do it in front of fourteen thousand? I know you’re angry. I know you’re tired, and I know in many ways you’re fed up with being fed rubbish from your team, but they worked hard today and what you got was the sort of numbers that attend GWS or Gold Coast home games.

 

THE UGLY

Jake Carlisle drops the pud!

This is unfair – I know it is, but I’m going with it anyway.

Jack Steven went steaming forward as the clock ticked down and gave Carlisle every chance to clunk this mark. He leapt, got two clean hands to it above his head, and juggled it.

It allowed Phil Davis into the contest, and he made a terrific spoil to secure the draw. He should never have got the chance.

Jake Carlisle is one of the best marks in the league, apparently. If you listen to the commentators, you’d think he had Stewart Leowe-like hands. If there was ever a time to display them, it was in this situation.

He didn’t, and the Saints’ second win of the year went begging as he allowed the game to slip through his fingers.

 

OTHER BITS

As great as Jack Steven’s last ditch run was, and you could feel the excitement through the television, to me he is like the poor man’s Dane Swan. He is an accumulator and the stats say he had 29 touches at 72% efficiency. However, I wonder if the two handballs he gave to teammates in the first quarter that sold them into terrible trouble on both occasions were amongst those effective disposals? They were terrible, and caused his teammates to be tackled almost immediately.

Cameron had two marks inside 50 due to Sam Gilbert simply falling over. Screw in stops please, Mr Gilbert.

I think teams may really enjoy smashing into Lachie Whitfield. This is the second week in a row I’ve seen him get caught in crunching tackles. Looks to me like sides realise how important he is to the GWS structure, and if the opportunity arises to punish him, players are instructed to take it.

I reckon McCartin should get his credit card out and get ready to pay a grand for throwing himself backwards like he’d been shot in the third quarter.

Nothing in the Dawson Simpson – Jack Newnes clash. Both players with eyes on the ball and arrived at exactly the same time. I really hope Simpson isn’t cited for this just because Newnes didn’t return.

We’ve covered Carlisle already, but he looked really at home in the second quarter. Guess where he was playing? Yep, in defence. He started to control the area inside defensive 50 in the second quarter, and as he did, the Saints started to look a lot better.

Nick Haynes looked like he was going up and down in the one spot at times today after getting the knock on the thigh early in the game.

Daniel Lloyd’s missed tackle on Jack Steven is one of those things that simply should not have happened. It set Steven off and running whereas it should’ve stopped him dead and forced a stoppage. A bit of work to do when the tape is reviewed for Daniel…

Jack Billings looked really gun-shy as he ran inside fifty in the second. Having already missed three times, he hit a “nothing” kick which had neither a chance to score, or an opportunity for a forward to mark it.

Jack Steven’s read off the pack in the third quarter was picture-perfect. Never broke stride and finished on the left foot. Great goal.

Not much will be made of Dylan Shiel’s goal in the third quarter, but it was a stunner and a possible goal of the year contender! Froze a couple of defenders with a fake handball in a tackle, ran away and then sold some candy to Nick Coffield before threading it on a tight angle from 35 metres. Again, great goal.

Blake Acres was pretty good all day, but tgot the sort of free kick late in the third that really annoys me. Cameron made the softest front on contact with him in a marking contest… after Acres had spilled the ball. He should’ve taken that mark and there’d be no reason for the umpire to bail him out.

Carlisle dropped another mark that cost the Saints today. Late in the third, he dropped an uncontested mark, slipped, and the ball landed with Hopper 35 metres out. Luckily, Hopper missed, but it was a huge error.

Throwing someone’s boot away is now reason for a 50 metre penalty. Keep that in mind as the year progresses and boots come off.

Jeremy Cameron did all he could to lift the Giants early in the fourth quarter. The guy has a huge tank on him.

Jack Billings was run down by Heath Shaw as he kicked it, dropped the ball and it was called play on. Blatant holding the ball decision.

What an effort from Findlayson, chasing down Jack Steven and gaining the free kick as Steven tried bouncing. He’s got a bit of toe about him.

Lloyd’s tackle on Long was an absolute cracker. Powerful, but fair. Great to see Long return the favour later in the quarter and win a free kick of his own with a tackle on Lloyd. We’ll call it a draw. Fittingly.

 

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