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No change for Tigers

Richmond goes into Saturday’s preliminary final against GWS at the MCG with an unchanged line-up.

6:25pm  Sep 21, 2017

Opposition Analysis: GWS, preliminary final

Richmond assistant coach Ben Rutten provides a snapshot of GWS’s main on-field attributes ahead of Saturday’s preliminary final at the MCG.

2:49pm  Sep 21, 2017

How the VFL Tigers became a force

Craig McRae has provided an insight into the impressive turnaround of Richmond’s VFL program.

1:13pm  Sep 21, 2017

A Black & White Reality Check

Con Bouliopoulos  April 22, 2013 9:51 AM

No words.

That could be my entire blog and I would be satisfied with it.

I went into this game wanting one question answered.

Is Richmond premiership material?

I can’t be disappointed. I got my answer.

We’re not, not yet at least, we might be one day, but our day hasn’t come yet.

No umpire frustrated me. The result was never disputed. Collingwood were better on the day.

Coming into this game against Collingwood I was beaming with confidence. The Tigers played an irresistible brand of football against one of their bogey sides – the Western Bulldogs. Deledio, Cotchin, Martin, Riewoldt, Maric, you name them, all our big time players stepped up and put away the Bulldogs in emphatic fashion.

The confidence was beginning to grow; I was not the only diluted one. Mark Robinson, the leading expert tipper on Herald Sun’s tipping competition backed the Tiges. The 400 game legend and AFL immortal Kevin Bartlett tipped the Tigers by 40 points.  Sportsbet even stated that the Tigers were favourites with the bookies before the game too!

The blood was pumping fast throughout our dark and seemingly defeated soul. Our large paws were gripping tightly onto the unforgiving quicksand that’s engulfed us for 30 years.

We were crawling out, ever so slowly; you could see the beam of light.

But ultimately, like the Greek tragedy that we’ve been swirling in for seemingly ever – it was one of our inbred that put their foot firmly down our throat.

Travis Cloke (son of Richmond premiership player David) bloody demolished us. It got so bad I was crossing my fingers they would make the bleeding stop. If this were a boxing match, the white towel would have been thrown into the ring half way through the third quarter. I can’t believe that a football side without Jolly, Beams, Ball, Johnson, Goldsack and whomever else I missed managed to mangle our best side (without Foley) for 30 minutes. Collingwood were absolutely awesome in that third quarter. It was a major reality check.

This so-called amazing defense we’ve set up, got its first true test for the season.
 

They failed, and miserably.

Ricky Petterd cost some vital early goals, Troy Chaplin doesn’t even look match fit - has not since his first game, and Alex Rance had no help, magilla gorilla smothered him. What really peeved me off was the problems we’ve had all year didn’t get addressed today. Hardwick’s been saying that we’re at about 7 out of 10. Where did that improvement need to come from?

Richmond’s ranked last in tackles this year, and yet, you would assume that they would lay the tackles desperately this round? Well Richmond laid four tackles in the 3rd quarter.

Unbelievable.

Collingwood stopped us from playing our game and then began playing theirs.

Every single football supporter will doubt us now, and sadly they may be right. The Magpies have firmly put us back into place. That’s the fun thing about footy though, every team has the chance to redeem themselves the following week, Collingwood responded after their smashing last week against Hawthorn. Unfortunately I can’t help but feel that we’re a special occurrence, fighting against the weight of history, we struggle to overcome it.

What happens to me? I’ll head into work Monday morning and cop it on the chin; unfortunately half of our school (and this is no exaggeration) supports the Maggies. I’ll avoid newspapers, television shows, footy forums – especially footy forums and replays whilst deflecting football conversations in the staff room to Mr. Moss’ love of motorized scooters.  

Onto next week we heave ho’, and boy we better be breathing some fire against the Dockers because they won’t want to lose three on the trot.

Lesson for the day, there’s always positives within negatives.  Dane Swan’s my Supercoach captain and Travis Cloke’s in my team. There’s my positive for the day.

Gotiges!

Follow me @Conmjj