The Match of the Round caused some huge confusion amongst the leagues with the live score app freezing upon a 4 point win to Old Geelong in their crucial clash against the undefeated Ormond. As clubs across the division shared their shock, it was only at Como Park where spectators, players and officials alike understood that Ormond had held on to win by two goals in a scrappy, workmanlike performance.
Round 8 is the final round in a long stretch of early season slobber knockers before the bye. No doubt a coach or two will pull out the words ‘one more effort and you get a week off’ in the fixtures upcoming, as the desire to take a win into the break is paramount. No team wants their hard work to be undone by a lacklustre performance and two weeks to mill over a confidence sapping loss.
We will start with the Clive Waterhouse MOTR and it was certainly one that lived up to expectations in regard to the ferocity and passion both sides played with. There was indeed a lot of old man, (Samuel and Charles) Youngman making up something of a Neil Young classic, but both sides certainly won’t be feeling too young after the bruising encounter between two of the premier sides in the Division. It was a strong spread, both across the ground and in the goal tally that allowed Ormond to maintain the ascendancy they had established in the second quarter to win the game by 12 points. They had 11 individual goal kickers in their 11-goal tally with Matthew Martinov patrolling Centre Half Forward in another excellent performance. While the remarkable endurance of Mathew Young and former SKOB midfielder Andrew Leahy kept Old Geelong in the game, Ormond’s defensive prowess denied the OGs the opportunities they had previously been allowed, with the big three (McMeel, Young and Wood) kept to just 4 goals. It was a battle I expect to see relived sometime in September.
After a tumultuous start to the season, Prahran Assumption breathed a collective sigh of relief after they came away with a 29-point win over Yarra Valley. The two have a history together, however they certainly are not the fearsome duo that have bullied opponents in years gone past. Whilst the Double Blues only led by 3 points at half time, they were on top of the Bushrangers, who, despite minimal forward entries, remained in the game thanks to Matthew Letson’s brilliance. The second half was all one-way traffic with excellent efforts from courageous midfielder Daniel Anglin keeping Yarra off the ball and the dynamic duo Matthew Shaw and Blayne Dempsey together booting 9. Prahran had a monopoly on the contested ball and secured the game by ¾ time. Although the Bushrangers kicked 5 in the last, they appear to be at wit’s end and remain winless after 7.
NOBS/St Pats came off a crushing loss to Kew last week, so it was a welcome trip back to their second home in Ballarat for a much-needed spiritual awakening. Bulleen Templestowe, also floundering at the bottom of the table, didn’t appear to be affected by the seemingly endless road trip, fighting valiantly for three quarters until NOBSPC called on the spirit of noble Ballarat figures such as Geoffery Blainey, Alfred Deakin and Cardinal George Pe… well, maybe not him, to win by 31 points. The Bullants led by 2 points at three-quarter time, with impressive flanker/midfielder Harry Vogler creating headaches and Paul Florence bobbing up for a couple of goals. In spite of this the final stanza saw St Pats Old Boy Christian Ryan kick 3 and Chris Horsley bullock around half back as NOBSPC kicked away and celebrated another satisfying trip down the M8.
Is Sid Jones leading the LS Pepper medal currently? It would seem the man who came runner up in the Division 2 league medal last season has a few votes in his back pocket as we close in on the second half of the season. Over the weekend, he did his chances no harm as St Mary’s Salesian disposed of the wounded Old Mentonians by 48 points. Jones, a fine midfielder, was again dominant in the clinches and kicked 4 goals. He was well supported by a legion of Saints players including D’Arcy Grant and James Rogers in the back half and Luke Dykes kicking a couple of crucial goals. On a day where 32 behinds were kicked in reasonably still conditions, the skill level of both sides was not brilliant. It is no secret that the Panthers are lacking depth (their twos have conceded 1113 points in 7 fixtures), and it showed here. The gulf between 4th and 5th is evidently quite large although Tristan Strange and Robert Tunbridge went toe to toe with SMS and Dustin Mills kicked 3.
Back at the Bear Cave, Kew was simply too good for a young and inexperienced Whitefriars’ side, retaining top spot with a 64-point win. Whilst the scoreboard shows a demolition job, it was not the finest display of football the Bear Cave has seen with the game turning into a bit of a scrap after quarter time. Whitefriars was buoyed by strong efforts from Danny Hogan and Mitchell Geilings throughout the day, however the strength of Kew’s list shone through with the stubborn defence led by Vice Captain Michael Henderson and Tom Leeds appearing oft impenetrable. Brazzale and his sidekick Maibaum combined for 11 goals, and Jack ‘Fat Penguin’ Delbridge won plenty of clearances. Their win brings us to one of the most anticipated Clives of the season. The rematch.
Willie Bee’s Round 8 Clive Waterhouse MOTR
Last season in the Division 2 Grand Final, Kew turned the tables on a demoralising semi final loss to beat St Mary’s Salesian by 9 points in a terrific grand final match up. The two play each other at Ferndale Park this weekend, with both sides sitting in familiar ladder territory; Kew (1st) and St Mary’s (4th). Obviously, neither team can afford to drop this game so it will be ferociously fought out. Butler v Brazzale mk. IV will be another storied clash. So is it head or heart, William?
Kew by 6 points.
Round 8 tips
NOBS/St Pats v Yarra Valley
St Mary’s Salesian v Kew
Bulleen Templestowe v Ormond
Prahran Assumption v Old Geelong
Whitefriars v Old Mentonians