The Sydney Swans 22 From Other Clubs 1996-2014

Since 1996 the Sydney Swans have been remarkably consistent, making the finals in 16 out of 19 seasons, playing in five grand finals and winning two premierships.

Part of the Swans success has been their recruiting of players from other clubs. Whether it be bit part players flourishing with more opportunities, bad boys looking for a fresh start or high profile recruits lured by big money offers, the Swans have had them all and plenty in between.

The Backline

B: Andrew Shauble (Collingwood, 1994-1999 79 games, Sydney 2000-2005 88 games)

A reliable defender Shauble won the Swan’s best and fairest in 2000, his first year at the club. Schauble replaced Andrew Dunkley at full back following his retirement but couldn’t break into the line up for the 2005 premiership.

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FB: Ted Richards (Essendon 2002-2005 33 games, Sydney 2006-  198 games)

Richards was swapped for pick 19 by Essendon, and turned into one of the competitions premier defenders with All-Australian selection and a premiership medal in 2012, marking Buddy Frnaklin in the grand final despite carrying an ankle injury. He is on the cusp of 200 games for the Swans.

AFL Rd 16 - Collingwood v Essendon

B: Carig Bolton (Brisbane 2000-2002 29 games, Sydney 2003-2010 170 games)

Bolton couldn’t command a regular spot in the Brisbane Lions all conquering team and was drafted by the Swans with pick 3 of the pre-season draft. He went on to be a dual All-Australian defender (2006, 2009) a premiership player in 2005 and co-captain from 2008-2010. Achilles and ankle injuries prematurely ended his career.

1999 AFL Ansett Cup

HB: Marty Mattner (Adelaide 2002-2007 98 games, Sydney 2008-2013, 124 games)

Mattner was a solid wingman/defender at Adelaide and became a valuable rebounding defender at Sydeny and played in the 2012 premeirship. Mattner had amazing durability at the Swans missing just one game in his time at the club before a hip injured forced him into retirement after seven rounds in 2013.

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CHB: Paul Roos (Fitzroy 1982 – 1994 269 games, Sydney 1995-1998 87 games)

After 14 years at Fitzroy and with the club on its last legs, Roos moved to Sydney at the age of 31 on a 3 year contract. He played 4 seasons at the Swans gaining All-Australian selection in 1996 and 1997 and playing in the 1996 grand final. Roos later career was characterised by being an early adopter of gloves, a late ditcher of the mullet and his cricket-like thigh guard. Roos took over from Rodney Eade as coach in mid 2002 and led Sydney to the 2005 premiership.

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HB: Rhys Shaw (Collingwood 2000-2008 94 games, Sydney 2009 –  124 games)

Shaw meandered his way through nine seasons at Collingwood but never really seemed to hit his straps. He was traded to Sydney in exchange for pick 61 and the Swans were able to mould him into a consistent and reliable defender who provided plenty of rebound out of defence. He twice finished second in the Swan’s Best and Fairest (2009 & 2011) and was a premiership player in 2012.

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The Midfield

W: Stuart Maxfield (Richmond 1990-95 89, games, Sydney 1996-2005 200 games)

Sydney swapped defender Darren Gasper for wingman Stuart Maxfield from Richmond. Maxfield played in the losing 1996 grand final side and went on to captian the club but missed the 2005 premiership due to injury .

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C: Paul Williams (Collingwood 1991-2000 189 games, Sydney 2001-2006 117 games)

Williams was always in the shadow of Nathan Buckley at Collingwood, but he stepped out of that shadow with his move to Sydney and won back to back best and fairest awards in his first two seasons at the Swans. He was also All-Australian in 2003 and was an integral part of the 2005 premiership team.

1009-Williams_Paul

W: Ben McGlynn (Hawthorn 2006-2009 44 games, Sydney 2010- 66 games)

McGlynn was a elevated off the rookie list at Hawthorn but really took his game to another level in his time at the Swans. He missed the 2012 premiership due to a hamstring injury suffered in the qualifying final against Adelaide.

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Ruck: Jason Ball (West Coast 1992-1999 103 games, Sydney 2000-2005 90 games)

A premiership player at West Coast in 1994, Ball was central to the Swans 2005 premiership putting in a herculean effort late in the game urging his team mates on with his head swathed in bandages. He was the first in a long line of ruckmen the Swans have recruited from other clubs since 2000.

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RR: Josh Kennedy (Hawthorn 2008-2009 14 games, Sydney 2010- 121 games)

Josh Kennedy is third generation Hawthorn royalty. Grandson of legendary premiership coach John Kennedy and son of 200 game, four time premiership player John Kennedy Jr, Kennedy was recurited to Hawthorn aunder the Father-Son rule. He managed 14 games in two season before the Swans swooped with one of the great AFL trades swapping Josh Kennedy and Ben McGlynn for picks 39, 46 and 70. Kennedy has since developed into a midfield general, with All Australian honours in 2012 and 2014, plus a best and fairest and a premiership medal in 2012.


895759-379674c4-13cd-11e4-ae81-95568c4ed36e

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R: Wayne Schwass (North Melbourne 1988-1997 194 games, Sydney 1998-2002 98 games)

After 10 years at North Melbourne, Wayne Schwass fell out with coach Dennis Pagan after being suspended in the 1997 finals. In a midfielder exchange, the Swans swapped the younger Shannon Grant for the experienced Schwass, in a mutually beneficial trade. Schwass won the Swans Best and Fairest in 1999.

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The Forwards

HF: Nick Davis (Collingwood 1999-2002 71 games, Sydney 2003-2008 97 games)

The Swans would not have won the 2005 premiership if if hadn’t been for Davis’ four last quarter goals against Geelong delivered a dramatic victory in the semi final. Davis in now the Swans runner and goalkicking mentor to Lance Franklin.

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CHF: Barry Hall (St Kilda 1996-2001 88 games, Sydney 2002-2009 162 games)

Big Bad Bustling Barry Hall arrived in Sydney with a tattoo on his right shoulder that looked like a pair of boxing gloves. Hall soon transformed this image into a fearsome redback spider and was on his way to 7 consecutive leading goal kicker awards (2002-2008) as he booted 467 goals for the Swans, three All Australian selections (2004,2005,2006) , co captaincy (2006-2008) and the 2005 premiership. Hall also won the 2004 best and fairest but his time at Sydney unravelled after he punched Brent Staker in the jaw in 2008  and he called time on his Sydney career mid way through the 2009 season.

A year into his AFL odyssey.

335956-barry-hall

HF: Lance Franklin (Hawthorn 2002-2012 189 games, Sydney 2014- 22 games)

Dollars talk. Sydney prised Lance Franklin away from a successful Hawthorn team with the lure of $10 million dollars over 9 years. It was a Godfather offer – too good to refuse.For his part Franklin has already started to repay the investment, generating increased media interest, boosting crowds at the SCG , winning the Coleman medal and gaining All Australian selection in 2014. Franklin was one of Sydney’s best players in their grand final defeat.

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FP: Mitch Morton (West Coast 2005-2007 12 games, Richmond 2008-2011 59 games, Sydney 2012-2013 12 games)

Cameo stories don’t come much better than Mitch Morton. After three seasons at West Coast and a four year stint at Richmond, in 2011 Morton fell out of favour with the Tigers and was traded to Sydney for pick 79. He struggled to meet the exacting standards demanded by the Swans but finally made his debut in Round 21, 2012. Morton went on to play the last five games of the season and kicked two vital goals in the Grand Final. He retired due to persistent injuries at the end of 2013 at just 26 years of age.

Mitch+Morton+AFL+Rd+20+West+Coast+v+Richmond+5A9eadZTsg1l

FF: Tony Lockett (St Kilda 1983-1994 183 games, Sydney 1995-1999, 2002 98 games)

After 12 seasons and 898 goals for StKilda, Plugger skipped  away from the media spotlight in Melbourne to call Sydney home. In his first year at the Swans he kicked 110 goals and won the best and fairest award (the year Paul Kelly won the Brownlow). Locket also managed  a century of goals in 1996 and 1998, years in which he won the Coleman medal and All-Australian honours. In 1999 Plugger broke the long standing all time goal kicking record of 1299 goals. He is in the Swans team of the century.

AFL_Lockett1992_b

FP: Craig O’Brien (Essendon 1989-1991 21 games, St Kilda 1992-1995 52 games, Sydney 1996-2000 41 games)

Craig O”Brien was the small forward foil to Tony Lockett at both StKilda and Sydney. His best effort for the Swans was six goals in the narrow victory over Hawthorn in the 1996 Qualifying Final – a game Lockett missed through injury.
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Interchange

Peter Everitt (St Kilda 1993-2002 180 games, Hawthorn 2003-2006 72 games, Sydney 2007-2008 39 games) 

The colourful career of ruckman Peter Spider Everitt concluded at the Sydney Swans. Everitt fell out of favour with Hawthorn coach Alistair Clarkson in 2006, and with the offer of a 2 year deal, arrived at the Swans at the age of  32.

His younger brother of 15 years, Andrejs, is also a three club player and had a few seasons at the Swans (2011-2013, 43 games) in between stints at the Western Bulldogs and his current club, Carlton.

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Shane Mumford (Geelong 2008-2009 21 games, Sydney 2010-2013 79 games)

Geelong took on Mumford as a project player in their VFL team in 2007  but after he progressed to the AFL side in 2009 the Swans came in with a big money offer – rumoured to be $1million over 3 years –  that the Cats couldn’t hope to match. Mumford finished second in the Swnas best and fairest in his first season at the club and developed into one of the premier ruckmen in the competition. He was a premiership player in 2012.

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Darren Jolly (Melbourne 2001-2004 48 games, Sydney 2005-2009 118 games)

After being rookie listed in 2001, Jolly was third choice ruckman at the demons battling with Jeff White and Mark Jamar to get a game. The Swans saw something they liked though and gave up pick 15 to Melbourne in return for Jolly. He repaid the faith, missing just two games in his five years in Sydney and playing in the 2005 premiership sharing ruck duties with Jason Ball.

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Derek Kickett (North Melbourne 1989 12 games, Essendon 1990-1993 77 games, Sydney 1994-1996 63 games)

It is well known that Derek Kickett walked out of Essendon after being dropped for the 1993 grand final. He left the premiers and headed to the back to back wooden spoon winners, Sydney. Kickett endured a tough first season, winning the wooden spoon in 1994, before things began to turn around in 1995 with the arrival of Lockett, Roos and Ron Barassi as coach. Kickett’s final game was the 1996 grand final.

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Emergencies

Kurt Tippett (Adelaide 2007-2012 104 games, Sydney 2013- 26 games)

Just as it appeared Tippet would return ‘home’ to Queensland, the Swans pounced with a massive cash offer and suddenly Tippet recalled he was born in Sydney and grew up on the Gold Coast so either destination was ‘home’. A 12 match suspension for salary cap cheating at Adelaide didn’t stop Tippet winning the Swans goalkicking in 2013 but knee injuries restricted his output in 2014.

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Kevin Dyson (Melbourne 1991-1995 70 games, Sydney 1996-1997 35 games)

Dyson is one of the lesser known players in this list but he was an important cog in the Swans midfield playing as a centreman in 1996.

His route to the Swans started with stints at Fitzroy and Carlton without playing a senior game followed by Oakleigh in the VFA before being picked up by Melbourne and then lured north to Sydney.

Dyson’s career was prematurely ended due to the travel demands of his job (that the club had helped him find) prevented him from fulfilling football training commitments. How times have changed since 1997!

kevindyson1994

Robbie AhMat (Collingwood 1995-1997 25 games, Sydney 1998-2001 42 games)

AhMat was a goalkicking small forward for both Collingwood and Sydney. His career highlight was winning goal of the year in 2000 for a five bounce run from the half back flank at the SCG.

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Of course there are always those player recruited from other clubs who’s time at Sydney didn’t work out quite as well:

Scott Russell (Collingwood)  1999, 16 games

Ryan O’Connor (Essendon) 1999-2000, 24 games

Brett Allison (North Melbourne) 2000, 9 games

Stephen Tingay (Melbourne) 2001, 0 games

Nick Daffy (Richmond) 2002, 1 game

David Spriggs (Geelong) 2005-06, 5 games

Paul Chambers (Geelong) 2006, 12 games

Henry Playfair (Geelong) 2008-2010, 16 games

Daniel Bradshaw (Brisbane) 2010, 9 games

Mark Seaby (West Coast) 2010-2012, 18 games

Tommy Walsh (St Kilda) 2012-2014, 5 games

 Have I missed anyone?

Let me know by leaving a comment below

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6 Things You May Have Missed From The AFL Grand Final

The AFL season is over but here are 6 things you may have missed from the 2014 grand final.

6. Tom Jones and Ron Weasley pack light.

Yes the grand final entertainers pack so light in fact they only had one set of clothes with them. Here they are on Friday before the grand final being presented with Weasely being presented with a factory second Sherrin with a misprint and Jones receiving the concept jumper from the infamous Hawthorn-Sydney merger that was mooted in the 1990’s…. Jones has his name on the jumper yet I thought Gil said that there wouldn’t be names on jumpers in his lifetime?

 

Jones and Weasley were paid in trinkets
Jones and Weasley were ecstatic at being paid in trinkets

And here they are the next day in the same clothes; well Ron did change his T-shirt. Check out the scribble on his arm, Weasely could be the next international rookie drafted by Collingwood.

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Delilah!

 

Ink time
Ink time

There was also some concern that Jones sang “Delilah” a song about domestic violence and Weasely a song about a homeless, drug addicted prostitute, but most people were said not to have cared because they didn’t listen to the pre-match entertainment. I can only imagine the outcry if Jones had brought his Cardigan and sung “Burning down the House” –  a song which promotes arson and revenge/retribution, eye for an eye stuff  with it’s lyrics of  “fighting fire with fire, burning down the house” – two wrongs don’t make a right, Tom. Don’t even get me started with “Sex Bomb”

One thing we can thank Jones for is interview with Campbell Brown. Brown presented Jones with a pair of jocks and Jones signed of the interview, according to some people, by saying “take care” but after I carefully listed to the audio at least twice Jones clearly says “dickhead” in his Welsh accent. Never has anyone summed up the average footy fans view of Campbell Brown so quickly and so succinctly. All is forgiven Tom for referring to the players as “rugby players” in the same interview.

 

Campbell Brown: a dickhead in a long jacket
Campbell Brown: a dickhead in an oversized jacket

Most people seemed pretty pleased with the entertainment but the nagging question remains: How about some Australian music? (and I don’t mean Mike Brady ‘reworking’ Up There Cazaly again). Of course the obvious solution is to give the Triple J Unearthed winner the gig every year. I can’t stand the music that’s played on Triple J but that’s besides the point, it’s Australian music, it’s emerging talent so there should be no complaints about giving them exposure on a national stage – it would be un-Australian not to.

 

5. Curtain raiser not in HD

I kid you not, prior to Weasely and Jones “entertaining” the crowd, there was a game of football played on the MCG. Yes a curtain raiser game of football was played on the MCG prior to the AFL Grand Final, the biggest game of the year but there are very few to no curtain raisers before any other games during the year. I know what your thinking, what the hell was this game and why wasn’t it on TV when I was watching another politician speak at the North Melbourne Grand Final breakfast (does anyone watch this snoozefest?) or Stephen Motlop do an acoustic version of “Up There Cazaly” (it was crap in case you were wondering) Well the game was between the traditional rivals: the All-Australian Under 17 team and the Allies – an U18 team of players from NSW, ACT, Queensland, Tasmania, NT. You can now probably understand now why it wasn’t on TV, however the game was streamed online but not in high definition. Outrage.

The Allies in there traditional strip. There is no such thing as taking sponsorship too far.
The Allies in their traditional strip. There is no such thing as taking sponsorship too far.
The NAB employees celebrated a famous victory on Grand Final day
The NAB employees celebrated a famous victory on Grand Final day

The game that followed, the small matter of the AFL Grand Final, was also not broadcast in high definition but instead in standard definition despite this being 2014 and Channel 7 having a HD channel, 7mate, at their disposal. This may have gone under the radar so I just thought I’d point it out. And whilst were on Grand Final broadcasts, it’s time the AFL got the TAC Cup Grand Final (which was an online stream only this year) and all state league grand finals (VFL, SANFL, WAFL, NEAFL, TSL, NTFL) broadcast live nationwide on TV.

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If you squint the Standard Definition looks fine.

 

4. Bad Crowd Behaviour

Media reports suggested sections of the crowd were booing Adam Goodes and social media had fans reporting racial abuse directed at the Sydeny star. But social media really lit up when some corporate types decided it would be appropriate to pay for a stripper to come into their box for the day and lo and behold what did she do but strip off at the final siren. Who would have predicted that? The pictures are out there, Google them if you like.

The average AFL fan would probably give up a lot of things to go to a grand final. Their clothes is probably not one of them.

The stripper was arrested but not after hitting and biting police. All class from the stripper and those in the corporate box who hired her. There is also a complete lack of respect for Grand Final tradition, streaking is meant to occur on the field of play.

 

Big day comes to an end in the lockup.
Big day comes to an end in the lockup.

Also Usain Bolt was in the crowd. Why? As was Terrell Owens. Who?

 

3. Who had 35 touches in the Grand Final?

Easy. Lewis Jetta (4) + Gary Rohan (7) + Craig Bird (8) + Sam Reid (8) + Dean Rampe (8)

Luke Hodge also had 35 possessions and won the Norm Smith medal, Jordan Lewis had 37 touches and  14 of the bottom 17 disposal winners on the ground were Swans…

 

MCG staff were still looking for Lewis Jetta and Gary Rohan on Monday.
MCG staff were still looking for Lewis Jetta and Gary Rohan on Monday. The MCC confirmed that the resurfacing was necessary after playing a curtain raiser on Grand Final day had subjected the playing surface to ‘an unprecedented heavy load’

What else can Luke Hodge do? Well he can make every kids dreams come true by getting a photo with the Auskick kids while his team mates pose with the premiership cup.

 

Luke Hodge and the Auskick kids
Luke Hodge and the Auskick kids

 

2. Hawthorn fashion statement

Hawthron celebrated it’s premiership in style taking to the post match presentation stage in a combination ensemble of dress shoes, suit pants, white shirt, footy jumper and premiership medal. It is a look that is sure to take the Spring Carnival by storm this year.

 

Shaun Burgoyne was awarded best dressed for wearing his footy gear and a watch. Punctuality is key to all premiership celebrations.
Shaun Burgoyne was awarded best dressed for wearing his footy gear and a watch. Punctuality is key to all premiership celebrations.

 

Josh Gibson with his girlfriend Renee Bragh on the right and on the left Delta Goodrem
Josh Gibson with his girlfriend Renee Bragh on the right and on the left Delta Goodrem of course

 

 Gibson was still going third man up in the contest late into the night.
Gibson was still going third man up in the contest late into the night.

By the way, Hawthorn won. In a throwback to the 1980’s the Hawks have been in multiple consecutive grand finals, won back to back premierships and dominated the game, killing it as a contest mid way through the second quarter in a style reminiscent of three decades ago. Talk of a possible Hawthorn dynasty is too late, it’s already here.

 

1. Buddy Franklin and Alan Kohler

Yes Buddy Franklin plays for Sydney now but he use to play for Hawthorn, I bet you didn’t know that! It’s not like the commentators mentioned it at least a dozen times a quarter and every second minute during the pre-match. Franklin also played against some of his former teammates who still play at Hawthorn in the grand final, bet you hadn’t picked up on that one. Sydeny’s Josh Kennedy and Ben McGlynn also use to play for Hawthorn but you may have missed that in all the talk about Franklin.

Lance Franklin has moved on from Hawthorn.
Lance Franklin has moved on from Hawthorn.

There’s been a lot of talk this year about how handy Alan Kohler has been for Sydney; he helped get Kurt Tippet and Lance Franklin to the club, he’s said to have become Buddy’s best mate over the course of the season, in fact he’s been so good that some have said he’s provided the Swans with an unfair advantage. Unfortunately Kohler couldn’t get Sydney over the line in the grand final and I hear, despite all his hard work over many years, he’s not going to be at the Swans next year, I’m not sure why. Well, I think that’s right – there sure has been a lot of talk about Kohler.

 

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Alan Kohler has done wonders for Sydney over many years. He will be missed

 

When The AFL Clash Jumper “Policy” Goes Bad

When is a policy not a policy?

When it’s the AFL Clash jumper Policy!

For years it has been difficult, nay virtually impossible, to fathom the ‘logic’ behind the decisions from AFL HQ with regard to uniforms.

First their was umpires.

Umpires in white weren’t being seen or something so the AFL put them in all colours of the rainbow in 2003 only to send the umpires out in yellow to officiate a game between Hawthorn and Sydney. Sigh.

 

I've counted to five now come over here Hawthorn.
I’ve counted to five now come over here Hawthorn.

Then the AFL got their hands on the teams. The AFL directed all clubs to have an alternate or clash guernsey, preferably white now that the umpires had vacated that colour, so that one team would be ‘dark’ and the other ‘light’, to provide a contrast if the two teams colours were similar or if they deemed that the two teams colours weren’t significantly different once they had run the two jumpers through the AFL’s “colour computer” or something.

Unless of course if you were one of the big Melbourne clubs in which case you could put your head in the sand for a while and make up something about your club constitution and then produce possibly the silliest jumper ever seen – Essendon’s wide red sash. Or if you were Collingwood you could bleat about black and white stripes and tradition and then invert your colours and hey presto here’s the jumper we wore for 100 years before we changed it for no reason.

 

Really each time Carlton play Collingwood, the Pies should be in their alternate white with black stripes jumper and white shorts and Carlton should be in navy blue with blue shorts to provide contrast. But this doesn’t happen as the seemingly the big Melbourne clubs are immune to jumper clash rules. The light v dark theory simply doesn’t apply when Carlton play Richmond  – two dark playing strips.

 

Contrast?
Contrast?
Or contrast?
Or contrast?

The problem with the AFL system of jumpers is exactly that, there is no system. Some clubs have home jumpers and away jumpers, some have home jumpers and clash jumpers and some have home jumpers, away jumpers, and clash jumpers, and some have home jumpers and clash jumpers that don’t really fix the problem of the clash. There needs to be a system – either each club has a home jumper and an away jumper (that doesn’t clash with any other teams home jumper) or each team has a standard jumper and an alternate jumper that is used to avoid clashes with the opposition. Sounds so simple doesn’t it, could it work? Probably not if it was administered by the AFL.

 

However the biggest problem with the AFL’c calsh jumper policy, if you could call a random set of adjudications based on some vague notions of light versus dark and no recall of precedent a policy, is as follows:

 

If you can’t define a problem, you can’t fix it.

 

The AFL seemingly can’t use their eyes to definitively work out which jumpers clash, with certain matchings of jumpers going from being clashes to not being clashes over the years  – North Melbourne v Collingwood being a good example. How can you fix a problem if your not sure what the problem is?

 

Problem?
Problem?
Not a problem?
Not a problem?

Of course some of the designs that clubs have come up with for away jumpers and clash jumpers should definitely be vetoed by the AFL on the basis of common sense but seemingly that quality is in short supply at headquarters. If you’re not sure what I mean, check out some of the abominations here. Adelaide’s “Murder of Crows” guernsey is one that springs to mind, Western Bulldogs in red anyone?

 

Shit
Shit
Also shit
Also shit

 

White shorts.

The time for “white shorts for the away team” has passed. It belonged to a different era,  it is now dead. White shorts should be used for either home or away team when needed to help distinguish between the two uniforms. It’s not as if the rule is applied consistently anyway. Every away team playing at Metricon Stadium has worn their coloured shorts this year.

 

Home shorts at an away game? Treason!
Home shorts at an away game? Treason!

Just last year the AFL produced a classic piece of uniform nonsense, dictating that Fremantle had to wear white shorts in the grand final despite the Dockers shorts colour – purple – not clashing with Hawthorn’s brown and gold. The Dockers then decided to wear their white jumper with their white shorts as they had done all season. Why couldn’t the Dockers wear purple shorts? Nobody knows.

Thannk goodness Freo didn't wear purple!
Thank goodness Freo didn’t wear purple!

 

The nadir of AFL uniform stuff ups probably came late last year when Port Adelaidae wore it’s traditional prison bar jumper in a home game against Carlton who wore their away jumper. Good luck telling these two teams apart.

Clash
Clash

 

So far this season the AFL has delivered a mixed bag on the uniform front.

There have been a couple of common sense decisions: North Melbourne wearing white shorts in a home game against Adelaide and the Crows wearing their home jumper and dark shorts (anything to save us from the Murder of Crows jumper) and Geelong wearing dark shorts and a jumper with the colours inverted in an away game against North Melbourne who wore white shorts.

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Common sense prevails. A rarity

 

At the opposite end of the spectrum there was West Coast forced to wear their white clash strip in a home game against Richmond.

 

West Coast have home, away and clash  jumpers. Yet the AFL forced them to wear there clash jumper at home.
West Coast have home, away and clash jumpers. Yet the AFL forced them to wear their clash jumper at home against Richmond.

That was rock bottom for the clash jumper policy until this week and the Port Adelaide v Richmond debacle.

Port were told, in a home final, they would not be able to wear their black home strip instead they would have to wear their white away jumper so as not to clash with Richmond’s black and yellow jumper. Port kicked up a stink and the AFL backflipped saying Port could wear their traditional Prison Bars jumper of black with white stripes plus white shorts and that would be OK becasue it wouldn’t clash with Richmonds black with a yellow sash. What planet are the AFL on? What a nonsense solution. First we couldn’t have two teams in black jumpers and now we can! Flash backs to Port Adelaide v Carlton in 2013.

 

Strangely there hadn’t been concerns raised about Richmond’s away jumper which it has worn at away games against Port Adelaide since 2010. Regardless Richmond are the away team, they need to be wearing the alternative jumper, and Richmond have plenty of jumpers they could have worn to avoid a clash.

 

Firstly their VFL clash jumper.

 

VFL clash jumper - colours inverted
VFL clash jumper – colours inverted

 

As quoted on the Richmond website when this jumper was unveiled:

“A VFL clash guernsey has also been developed, in accordance with competition rules, which features a reverse design – yellow with a black sash. 

The VFL home guernsey maintains the same look and feel of the Tigers’ AFL clash guernsey, however it has been modified to maintain the mystique and tradition of the Club’s famous AFL strip.”

 

Wow the VFL have straight forward clash jumper rules!

Ah the mistique of a yellow sash on black and of course the tradition. Yes, the tradition. Such as this second jumper the traditional heritage jumper worn in 2008 to celebrate Richmond’s 100 years in the VFL/AFL. Hmmm seems you need to put a time limit on tradition, otherwise you could end up with a jumper design from before your current ‘tradition’. Why not wear this on the weekend for the sake of  tradition?

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Tradition
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Not Hawthorn

 

Thirdly any number of pre-season abominations

 

Yellow!
Yellow!
Richmond recruit Mark Graham in silver. Well played Terry Wallace
Richmond recruit Mark Graham in silver. Well played Terry Wallace

 

And lastly, hands up if you want to wear your training jumper against Port Adelaide?

 

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Me, I do and me too!

 

 

The real problem with Melbourne Football Club

Here’s something I wrote after Round 2 last year about the sorry state of Melbourne Football Club, 18 months later and after two horrid losses to the Brisbane Lions and GWS, the same holds true….

 

 

The unbelievable

Melbourne sack a CEO because he didn’t man up on his opponent on Saturday night and his game plan meant the team lost by 148 points.

Melbourne have lost their first two games of the season by 227 points which is eerily similar to 1996 when Melbourne lost its first 2 games by 221 points (Rd 1 lost to Geelong by 127 points, Rd 2 lost to Collingwood by 94 points) on its way to finishing the season in 14th place. At the end of the 1996 season the Melbourne members voted in favour of a merger with Hawthorn – voting themselves out of existence in their own right. Hmmm is that an option again in 2013?

Anyway I feel that people aren’t getting to the real heart of the issues with Melbourne.

Yes, the club seemingly can’t develop any of the procession of first round draft picks that have fallen into their lap into decent AFL standard players despite having 15 rising star nominations in the last 5 years.

Yes, they have let go, discarded or had leave a string of players to other clubs over the past couple of years. Brent Maloney & Stefan Martin (Brisbane) Matthew Warnock (Gold Coast), Cale Morton (West Coast), Jared Rivers (Geelong), Jordan Gysberts (North Melbourne), Ricky Pettard (Richmond) and Tom Scully (GWS)

Yes. they have cut short the careers of many stalwarts and club leaders including the shocking handling of club captain James McDonald as well as Brad Green, Russel Robertson, and even Cameron Bruce, Adam Yze, Jeff White – none of whom could be said to have finished their careers on great terms with the club.

Yes, their recruiting appears completely misguided shipping out the players mentioned above to bring in journeyman, nearly there, never were and VFL standard players. David Rodan, Shanon Byrnes, Tom Gillies and Cameron Pederson to name a few. Recruiting players from other clubs is fine but sometimes the old rule of thumb of recruiting blokes who can play 100 games for you is a good idea.

 

But the real issues to me are three:

1. The location of the Melbourne Football Club Shop.

It’s at the MCG but my guess is 99% of people who have ever been to the MCG would have no idea where it s and would have never even walked past it. The Melbourne Shop is located on Brunton Avenue underneath the concourse that wraps around the Southern Stand. The shop is located next to the driveway for the MCG’s underground carpark and the delivery entry for the stadium. This is what is holding Melbourne back! How can you be a great club if you can’t even sell footy jumpers with Jack Watt’s number on them to your fans on a match day because your fans can’t find your shop? The only people who currently see the Melbourne shop on a visit to the MCG are delivery drivers!

 

2. The logo

The Melbourne logo: Southern Cross added to apeal to bogans?
341 The Melbourne logo: Southern Cross added to apeal to bogans?

The current logo is complicated, messy and unclear on what it is trying to achieve (why are there flames coming out of the M?) – a bit like Melbourne’s recruitment policy! *boom tish* What is needed is a simple bold design and a simple Latin phrase: celebrare mediocritatem. I’ll let you guess what that could mean

3. The ring of stars on the jumper

An incomplete circle of stars - appropriately modeled by Tom Scully
342 An incomplete circle of stars – appropriately modeled by Tom Scully

The idea is that each star represents a premiership and form an incomplete circle as the Demons are always striving to complete that circle, always striving to win their next premiership. Clever marketing perhaps and all good in theory but maybe striving for their next win would be more realistic. A stark reminder too of Melbourne’s inability to develop any “stars” despite all the first round draft picks. Given the Dees last flag was in 1964 I don’t think the embroiderer is going to be busy anytime soon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Beverage King, Clash Jumpers and the MRP

Check out my latest for The Roar

 

Jake King departed AFL football in unique circumstances on the weekend.

Rather than being chaired off in his final match or doing a farewell lap of the ground…..

Read more here:

http://www.theroar.com.au/2014/08/07/beverage-king-clash-jumpers-mrp/

No names on jumpers, a 20 round season and a grand final public holiday

Check out my latest for The Roar

 

AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan has scrapped the idea of putting names on jumpers after a trial in Round 5 this season.

McLachlan said the font size of the names wasn’t able to be seen at the ground or on TV because of the “style and cut of the jumpers”.

Read more here….

http://www.theroar.com.au/2014/07/24/names-jumpers-20-round-season-grand-final-public-holiday/

 

 

Hobart, Brian Taylor and Mr Cliche

Hobart

Belerive Oval sorry Blundstone Arena  (Why is it called an arena not a stadium? Not enough stands?) hosted it’s fifth AFL match on the weekend in the third season of North Melbourne’s foray to the Apple Isle. In the first season, 2012, the Kangaroos two trips to Hobart were neatly spaced, occurring in April and July, both during school holidays.

In 2013 however the plan seemed to change and the Kangaroo’s Hobart matches were bunched together, being  just 3 weeks apart on April 13 and May 4.  Now after a 434 day wait the good folk of Hobart are treated to two AFL matches in the space of  6 weeks: July 12 and August 23.  I can only assume it is marketing strategy by the AFL to play North Melbourne’s two games per season in Hobart close together.

Those with long memories will recall North are not the first team to play in Hobart, Fitzroy played games at North Hobart Oval in the early 1990’s – two games in each of 1991 and 1992.  The venture started badly with the Roys first match a 157 point belting by Hawthorn who kicked 36 goals with Ben Allan and Darren Jarman snagging 7 each, Dunstall 6 and Paul Hudson 5. The Lions also lost to St Kilda in 1991 but in 1992 the Roys beat eventual premiers West Coast and fell just 3 points short of defeating Essendon. Hard to imagine Essendon making a trip to Hobart now! North are currently 3 wins and 2 losses from their 5 games.

Crowds haven’t changed much across the decades, Fitzroy averaged 11,542 across its 4 games in 1991-2 and North have averaged 11,874 in it’s 5 games so far with a peak of 14,113.  I guess that says more about the size of the stands at the arena than anything else.

The only previous VFL/AFL game in Hobart was in round 8, 1952 when games were taken to all parts of the country – Albury, Brisbane, Euroa, Hobart, Sydney and Yallourn –  as part of  the one and only ‘National Day’  to promote the code in other states. Once again it was Fitzroy playing a home game in Hobart. They defeated Melbourne at North Hobart Oval in front of a crowd of 18, 387. Still the biggest crowd to an VFL/AFL match in Hobart!

 
 

Brian Taylor

 

Brian Taylor calls Harry  Taylor a poofter on live TV and shows he doesn’t understand his actions by apologising to “anyone, and particularly Harry and any of his friends, that were offended by the remark”. The word is offensive, Taylor should be apologising for using the word poofter, not to people who were offended by the use of the word.

 

Back in 2000, Craig Hutchison was given a two week sabbatical  by Channel 7 after referring to the dodgy surface of Docklands Stadium as “death valley.” However it seems denigrating commercial partners trumps homophobic slurs at Channel 7 with the network making noises that Taylor will receive counselling and be back on air this weekend.

 

Senator Penny Wong also had something to say about BT,

 

“Well, if he can’t exercise self-control and just blurts these things out in the heat of the moment, perhaps he isn’t qualified to be sitting in front of a live microphone.”

Footy fans have been saying this for years! Time to go Brian Taylor.

 

The deflectors

 

Two old pros were at it again over the weekend
Eddie McGuire has been deflecting from Collingwood’s poor form by crusading against everything Sydney in his cliche riddled style. Whilst he might have a point about the Sydney Swans academy being an unfair advantage in these times of ultra-equalisation,  it’s hard to follow exactly what McGuire is talking about with his liberal use of cliches.

“It’s time for the AFL Commission to come and have a cup of coffee with a few people and let’s get the war room going because you know what we have got to do? We have got to get back to having some fun. It’s like going to the tax office at the moment” 

“I know I lead with my chin sometimes and I need to walk away from fights rather than into them sometimes but the other clubs have got to start putting their hands up. Now they are all lobbying around the back of the room and the rest of it, no one will say anything, so I have to go up the front sometimes.”

“I am not playing martyr here. But I am getting a bit tired of it.”

 

At least Sydney Swans new CEO Ander Plydom called Eddie out for his cliche usage

“There’s no point having coffees or beers, or martinis or anything if it’s just words and the behaviours don’t stop”

“I have nothing against Eddie, what I have objection to is when he gets away with saying things that aren’t true and they become law.”

As for that last statement: here, here.

 

Mick Malthouse, unloaded a tirade of abuse at Cameron Ling because the SCG show the Channel 7 feed on the big screens at the ground and had shown footage of him in the coaches box. Perhaps Mick shouldn’t worry so much about his face being on TV and big screens and worry more about how his team had 10 goals kicked against them in the third quarter….

 
And finally….
 
Don’t forget it’s a split round so that means no AFL on free to air TV for the next two Sunday afternoons. Enjoy!