1 - THE SCORE REVIEW SYSTEM CONTINUES TO BE A JOKE ACCORDING TO EVERYONE EXCEPT THE AFL.
Let me say first, before a barrage of Bombers fans ask for my head on a plate, I fully believe they deserved their win. I'm not blaming the score review system for the result. GWS relinquished a 19-point lead in the last term which raises questions about this fancied team. What I will say, though, is why do we even bother reviewing scores that might've been touched from 50m out? Let's save it for the goal-line calls and the howlers. It just gets sillier by the day. The fact the AFL keep backing their officials so blindly is laughable. We need to stop asking them about it...
2 - 11 wins might be enough to play finals.
The Dockers sit in 8th position on the ladder with a 7-7 record. Several top eight sides faltered this week. It's almost as though some don't want to play in September. The Dockers have lost their last two games to the 16th and 18th placed teams. Port were able to conjure up a stirring win against the top team, only to lose the following week to 15th placed Bulldogs. These are games the better sides shouldn't drop, and yes, the competition is pretty even, but you just have to win those. It seems a mediocre team with 11 wins may occupy the 8th spot on the ladder after Round 23.
3 - Tim Kelly's price keeps going up every week.
Here we have a player that wanted to head home last year. At the start of the year it seemed a formality. But with a possible Brownlow and Premiership Medallion, will he leave? And will Geelong find the million dollar plus salary he'll be offered elsewhere? It'll be fascinating to see how this plays out, and a huge mystery how this guy wasn't given a chance earlier.
4 - It's so good to see Naitanui playing again.
We've all missed Nic. And he was good. A lazy 41 hitouts, and he's looking as athletic as ever. Hopefully he'll stay healthy and we'll see more of him. The Eagles are hoping so, too, considering they just signed him for another three years.
5 - Swans and North unbelievably back in the hunt for September!
It's hard to believe that both these sides are just one game out of the eight. But then again, would any of us be shocked if Sydney were to make it? If they can make it from 0-6, they can do it from anywhere I suppose. I think for the first time in a long time, most of us have no idea how the eight will look at season's end after the completion of 15 rounds. And that's a good thing I suppose.
6 - Nathan Buckley was one week early when he said it's the worst they played.
We all thought it was a little arrogant to suggest the Pies had put in their worst effort for the year after a win. But after this week, I don't think anyone would argue with Nathan on this occasion. The Pies have lost their zip. Their usual run and carry has been replaced by a stop-start style. I'm sure their opponents had something to do with it as well, but it's certainly not the way the Pies usually go about it. Somehow the Pies are still 2nd, but I have a feeling they'll be struggling to remain Top Four unless they can regain their early season form.
7 - Port may have omitted too many of their better players.
Something's definitely amiss at Port. If Ryder, Westhoff and Rockliff are all available and not playing, I'm beginning to wonder if Hinkley and Co have lost their collective minds. Westhoff had 37 possessions for the Port Adelaide Magpies, and Rockliff had 57. That's right. 57!!! I know he was returning from injury, but it's Tom Rockliff man! I can only imagine that both of these guys would have made life a bit harder for the Western Bulldogs. Strange selections indeed.
8 - Sydney Stack can do it at both ends.
He's been played as a defender with great effect for most of the year. Hardwick decided to try him as a small forward this week (because Richmond don't have enough of those right?) and, sure enough, he lead the goal scoring with four majors and 15 possessions in a polished performance. The kid can do it all. I'm pretty sure a few clubs might raid the Tigers' list for the abundance of small forwards that aren't getting an opportunity.
9 - Hipwood blew the Dees away.
The Dees were well in it in the closing stages of 3/4 time, but in the space of eight minutes, Eric slammed through three goals and pretty much sparked the onslaught that put the Dees away. We all forget that he's still only just 21 years old. He will get better, and that's the scary part.
10 - No Cripps, no Charlie, no Harry, no problem!!
The Blues were written off pre-game with the absence of Cripps and McKay. And then with the early departure to Charlie Curnow, when the quarter time score read 32 to 3, it all seemed to be pretty much going to script. After quarter time, things changed. It's been a long time that I, as a supporter, can say Marc Murphy led us to victory, but that's exactly what he did. 34 possessions plus the matchwinner with 31 seconds left. He's back!!! And the Blues are off the bottom.
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