The Monday Knee Jerk Reaction: AFL Round Fourteen

Footy is a passion, not some cold hearted, spread sheet dominated rational exercise.

On a Monday you want irrational reaction. You want emotion to trump reason.

What you really want is idiotic hysteria.

You’ve come to the right place.

Adelaide (100) v North Melbourne (67)

Remember all those predictions that North Melbourne couldn’t beat top teams? Well it appears Adelaide are now a top team.

Don’t let the score fool you, the Crows should have won this by a lot more than 33-points.

Adelaide kept North looking vaguely competitive by booting 28 behinds, which would be difficult to do if you were trying.

That inaccuracy wasn’t only on the scoreboard, the Crows kept inventing new and exciting ways to butcher attacking moves every time they went forward.

But pure weight of numbers meant that even kicking like a bunch of drunk toddlers didn’t stop the Crows getting ahead and then some.

For North, there’s no hiding the fact they are as soft in the middle as a jam doughnut.

I don’t mean to sound harsh, I love jam doughnuts as much as anyone but they don’t win premierships.

Now some would say I’m being pretty harsh towards a team that has made the past two preliminary finals and is currently sitting in fifth but don’t shoot the messenger.

Just know North fans that it pains me to write that but that’s mainly because I strained my wrist playing PlayStation.

It really was PlayStation this time.

Collingwood (85) v Fremantle (37)

If you were lucky enough to not go to this match or even luckier and didn’t watch it at all, let me sum it up for you in one word, Nickelback.

Yes, it really was as bad as those Canadian ‘musicians’ and like them, it seemed to go on forever and you just spent the whole time wishing it would end.

Much has been made of the fact that only 20,320 people attended this game, one of Collingwood’s worst attendances ever.

But when you consider it was freezing and Collingwood were playing Fremantle, the fact Pies fans didn’t go actually shows they have a lot more common sense than you’d normally assume.

This game certainly served to remind us the Fremantle are really, really awful.

In fact, they are so bad, people were writing stories about how Collingwood were ‘back in form’ or that ‘Travis Cloke was impressive’. It takes a lot of awfulness to make people believe those things.

There was probably a lot of relief amoungst the Collingwood hierarchy after this win.

After the week they’d had, the last thing they needed was a loss to keep the pressure on and underline the frailness of the club at the moment.

It’s all of their own making too. The coaching change and list building of the last five years has been a disaster and all the pointing at other external issues only distracts people for so long.

Look at the whole ‘threat’ of equalisation we kept being told about. Currently, the ladder has Hawthorn, Sydney and Geelong in the top three. Equalisation doesn’t seem to be affecting those teams.

Perhaps Collingwood’s problem isn’t equalisation or academies but a string of self-inflicted wounds they won’t acknowledge.

Richmond (117) v Brisbane (75)

The awful games continued with Richmond taking on Brisbane. Really, who cared about this match? If you managed to stay awake during all of it, you’re a better person than me.

Not that being asleep for parts of this limits in anyway my ability to analyse this game. I managed to time my sleeps to coincide with the large parts of this game where nothing interesting happened.

Brisbane certainly didn’t appear to be awake either and Richmond weren’t much better.

The Lions have chalked up some impressive feats this season, this time, making Richmond look like a competent, well organised AFL team.

Not that the Tigers could keep it up all game, even with their opponent’s ongoing assistance.

In the second half, the Tigers had the chance to really but the Lions away but it was all too hard for them. They were lazy and their skills are really poor.

This was a real chance for Richmond to send a message and they did, it said ‘we’re not very good’.

But we already knew that.

Greater Western Sydney (127) v Carlton (65)

Congrats if you’re still reading this. A round like this is probably best forgotten, making a recap fairly pointless.

Since you’ve stuck with me, here’s a little secret, when making mashed potatoes, after giving them a good mash, add an egg and stir it through. It gives it an amazing fluffy texture.

Now, what were we doing? Ah yes, recapping one of the most boring rounds in recent memory.

This game managed to be both one-sided and a scrappy affair. Stevie J did his best to make it interesting by booting four goals but even he couldn’t make me stop wishing I had some friends to hang out with, rather than sitting alone, writing inane tweets on the information superhighway.

Carlton gave this a go but after the excitement earlier in the year about them potentially playing finals, they’ve returned to reality.

Not that it’s a terrible reality. They are still much improved, which is most disappointing for the rest of us.

10,355 people showed up to watch this. The AFL would have once been thrilled if you’d told them the Giants would one day pull about half what Collingwood did.

St Kilda (93) v Geelong (90)

Finally, a game worth watching and one that saved the round from being a complete waste of time.

Geelong are putting together an unimpressive record against bottom sides and it continued here.

That’s being a little unfair to the Saints who completely deserved this win but it’s a worry for the Cats.

Luckily for Geelong, you don’t play bottom sides in the finals, except that time Carlton got in when Essendon got banned and then the Blues beat Richmond (still funny).

St Kilda got to work a lot earlier than Geelong, who didn’t really clock in until the third quarter.

The Cats seemed a bit perplexed in the first half that they weren’t getting everything going their way.

Once the third began, Geelong began to get into gear and it seemed the Saints were likely to be overrun. It perhaps should have been that way but for a combination of the Cats not taking their opportunities and the Saints standing tall.

It was an incredibly exciting ending, made all the more enjoyable by seeing Joel Selwood complain to the umpires after the siren

Hilarious stuff, considering the umpires had made mistakes all the way through, with the Saints on the end of a lot of them. Selwood complaining about umpiring is like big business complaining about tax evasion.

In the end, the Cats had plenty of chances and had only themselves to blame for a sloppy and at times lacklustre display.

Hawthorn (86) v Gold Coast (60)

As these two sides started playing, the clash of colours had me shielding my eyes and collapsing to the floor as I suffered some sort of temporary vertigo.

The cause was Hawthorn’s pink and brown stripped jumper that was so awful, words on the page can’t do it justice.

An added problem was it was not only hideous, when contrasted with the Suns rather horrific jumper, it created a seasick feeling.

As I lay on the floor trying to recover, I thought that the fact the Hawks jumper was for charity, doesn’t excuse the crime against fashion and optical health it was.

Seriously, Hawthorn are serial offenders in this regard. The AFL must step in and start stripping them of premiership points or ideally, premierships.

This was the only AFL game on Sunday, a clever bit of scheduling that meant there was no AFL on free-to-air in Melbourne. Remember that the next time the AFL are talking about putting the fans first.

In the context of the round, this was a fairly entertaining contest. The Hawks welcomed Hodge back and his presence gave them a stability they’ve lacked at times this year.

The most interesting part was wondering if Gary Ablett and Tom Lynch could drag their team over the top. They both gave it a fair shake.

Tom Lynch continues to impress and he’s wasted at the Gold Coast. He’s the key marking forward the commentators continue to pretend Travis Cloke still is. He’s actually better than old Trav ever was.

Despite Ablett and Lynch, the Hawks know how to win and now they sit there again, first on the ladder and things coming together as we head into the second half of the season.

Someone pointed out the other day that the Hawks have had 1000 days of being premiers. It feels more like 1000 years. 1000 years in hell.

Sign up to Titus O’Reily’s Electronic Mail Newsletter.


  1. Gary Bruce

    do you put the potatoes back on the stove after you’ve added the egg? Is it a whole egg, or just the whites?

  2. roberto of oz

    Crikey! Whose Mum washed the Hawthorn jumpers this week?

  3. Gary Bruce

    Cloke kicked as many goal as behinds. That doesn’t qualify has a resounding return to form?

  4. BenevolentPoo

    Gary Bruce I also wish to know more about the egg thing.

  5. sprlawrence

    Is the egg thing a joke or the real deal? Too scared to waste a pot of potatoes on a footy writers cooking tips….

  6. tamrapalmerTP

    Man, there’s a rush on this egg thing Titus. Think you’ve hit footy/recipe gold, or goals as the case may be. Agree on Hawthorn’s lack of fashion taste. Their away jerseys are crimes against humanity.

  7. MacHawk

    tamrapalmerTP Our away jerseys ARE crimes against humanity !! But this one was too awful to be true – My first line on one of the Hawks fan pages was – “We finally overcame our disgusting jerseys to grind out a win…………” – mind you, I got hammered by the sanctimonious, self righteous crowd who interpreted my comment to mean that I sadistically reveled in the sight of pretty 8 year girls slowly dying of Leukemia.

Leave a Comment