Richmond entered the twilight zone yet again in last Friday night’s clash with St Kilda at the MCG.
Matches between the two teams throughout AFL/VFL history have produced some truly strange results.
The Tigers were held to their lowest score in 60 years by the Saints last Friday night, managing just 2.10 (22) across the four quarters.
Richmond’s lowest-ever score – 0.8 (8) – came in Round 16, 1961, and that also was against St Kilda (at the Junction Oval).
On the Queen’s Birthday Monday of June 16, 1975, out at Waverley Park, the Tigers led the Saints by eight goals at half-time – 9.8 (62) to 1.8 (14), only to end up losing by 12 points – 13.12 (90) to 14.18 (102).
In Richmond’s drought-breaking 2017 premiership year, it was stunned by St Kilda in a Round 16 encounter at Marvel Stadium. The Tigers had one meagre goal on the board at half-time and trailed by a whopping 82 points – 1.4 (10) to 14.8 (92). They lost by 67 points – 10.11 (71) to 21.12 (138).
Mind you, it hasn’t been all one-way traffic in the Richmond v St Kilda twilight zone . . .
Round 14 of the 1971 season at Moorabbin, the Tigers were 30 points down at three-quarter-time – 7.8 (50) to 12.8 (80) – and looked gone for all money. But they piled on 6.4 to 1.1 in the final term to snatch a thrilling three-point victory – 13.12 (90) to 13.9 (87).
At the SCG, in Round 16 of the 1980 season, Richmond conceded the first five goals of the match to the rank outsider St Kilda, but then, incredibly, went on to kick its all-time record of 34.18 (222) to 11.4 (70).
Five years later – Round 3, 1985 at the MCG – the Tigers reached the 30-goal milestone again against the Saints, finishing with 31.25 (211) to 14.14 (98).
And, in Round 19 of the 1981 season, on a cold, wet, windy, miserable winter’s day at Moorabbin, Richmond, the reigning premier, won by six points with a goal after the final siren from small forward Paul Sarah.
That was the round the senior umpires had sensationally gone on strike, replaced by young umpires from the under-19s competition and country areas.
Teenage field umpire Glen McKeeman, officiating in his first game, paid a free kick against St Kilda’s Michael Nettlefold for an infringement on Sarah, 15 metres out from the Tigers’ goal with the scores level. Sarah duly drilled his fifth goal for the match to secure a stirring Yellow and Black win.
Richmond and St Kilda also have been involved in three drawn matches throughout league football history, all of them at the MCG – Round 3, 1978, Round 3, 1980 and Round 2, 2011.
The Tigers’ longest winning sequence v the Saints is 15, from Round 6, 1940 to 1949. Their longest losing run against them is 13, from Round 19, 2003 to Round 21, 2010.
Overall, Richmond and St Kilda have played 190 times, with the Tigers winning 114, losing 73 and the three draws.