Tipping is like that some weeks, you can be two kicks from glory and it ends sort of average with a 6 a number most tipsters would have got. Essendon wins by a point and Adelaide wins by 5. Mick Malthouse might be right about what he said about the disinterest that can be generated by results like the Geelong and Collingwood wins this round. There is a huge gap between the bottom 4 teams and the top 4 teams and even between the top two teams and the rest of the competition. Finals do bring about some increased intensity by the lower teams in the 8 but let’s face it, apart from St Kilda who is outside the top 4, the other 3 teams that make the finals in positions 6 to 8 face an almost impossible task to match it with the teams in positions 1 and 2 this season.
While the Cats annihilated the Suns and the Pies thrashed the Power I was lying on a beach in Cabadbaran on the Mindanao coast. The beach was called Asinan, black sand and lots of pebbles and rocks. Getting in and out of the water was torture on your bare feet until you reached the sand about 20 metres into the water. The ocean here, I think it’s called the Surigao Strait, is dirty brown even when the sun is shining and I’m not sure whether that is because the sand is black or there is a river mouth near the beach we were at. The beaches are lined with ‘cottages’ and I use the term loosely. Napa palm thatched lean- to’s really, made of bamboo including some bench seating and a roughly put together table. Somebody comes along and asks you for 50 pesos to rent the cottage for the day. It was about 10 paces to the water so it was handy and certainly kept you out of the blazing sun when you weren’t swimming.When I thought about it I equated this to an Aussie family going to the beach with esky and beach umbrellas and sometimes those big shade gazebos they erect and in comparison the Filipino family just brings themselves and hire a hut for 50 pesos, about $1.10. Entrepreneurial locals set up huts as outlets for ice, drinks and snacks (sari sari stores) so you have only to walk 10 metres and you have a feed and a drink. In any event there are sellers walking along begging you to buy ice creams, popcorn, peanuts and duck eggs, a weird mix but effective when you are hungry. Kids in every country love the beach and this beach in Cabadbaran was no exception. Huge tractor tubes can be hired for a few pesos and the kids have a ball floating on the water and being dumped by waves and I saw up to 20 kids on a tube at a time so it was value for money again. The journey to and from the beach here at Cabadbaran from the city of Butuan is another whole story involving buses, vans and tricycles. I arrived back at Dottie’s hotel in Butuan to listen to the last 10 minutes of the Collingwood Port Adelaide game.
St Kilda 16.17.113 defeated Fremantle 10.12.72
The game was for the taking at 3 quarter time by either team but it was the Saints that came out in the last quarter and blitzed the Dockers with 6 goals to nil. St Kilda will know just where they are in their come back next week when they play Collingwood. Fremantle will be in survival mode for the last few rounds. They play Carlton next week and it will require a mammoth effort for them to win that game even at home.
Geelong 29.14.188 defeated Gold Coast Suns 6.2.38
The Ablett return was a non event due to a hamstring strain. Worse was the injury to Campbell Brown – a fractured pelvis. Johnson booted 6 this week to make it 13 goals in 2 games and the Pod kicked 5. In any man’s language this was a thrashing. A 10 goal 2nd quarter and an 8 goal 3rd quarter was champagne football from Geelong.
Carlton 21.8.134 defeated Melbourne 7.16.58
The game was utterly over at half time when the Blues led 14 goals to 3. Carlton continued to increase their lead over the next half to win very comfortably by 76 points. Judd got another 3 Brownlow votes and the Demons were not a lot better than last week. Well they were 100 points better really but it was hardly noticeable.
Essendon 15.10.100 defeated Sydney Swans 14.15.99
The game was always going to be difficult from which to tip a clear winner and the minimum final margin certainly proved that to be correct. Goodes missed a goal after the final siren but really the 2.9 in the final quarter by the Swans was costly inaccuracy. Essendon stays alive and the Swans rejoin the finals fight.
Collingwood 23.21.159 defeated Port Adelaide 3.3.21
Another annihilation was recorded in this round when the top team played the bottom team. The Power was restricted to 3 goals for the whole game and the Pies were allowed to do what they liked for most of the time. Port was lucky the weather was wet otherwise the Collingwood score would certainly have topped 200. Not a good game for Chad Cornes to remember in retirement but pretty memorable for the Pies.
Adelaide 16.14.110 defeated Brisbane 16.9.105
The Lions allowed the Crows to dominate the last quarter and as a result Adelaide snatched victory from the jaws of defeat. Brisbane stays in the race for the wooden spoon and they have lost their last 8, some close, but still losses. New Adelaide coach Bickley gets a dream start to his career.
Hawthorn 15.13.103 defeated North Melbourne 13.8.86
When you consider that North was ahead in the last quarter then Hawthorn can be considered lucky to have won in windy conditions at Aurora. Franklin was a major contributor in the last quarter kicking his 3 goals for the match in that term. Campbell for the Roos kicked 5 goals in a great effort. Hawthorn stays in 3rd place and North continues its fight for the finals along with a few other teams.
West Coast 22.15.147 defeated Richmond 14.6.90
In this match there were 13 goals kicked in the 3rd quarter with the Tigers outscoring the Eagles! Go figure? Richmond still lost the game by 10 goals after failing to appear in the last quarter as West Coast kicked 5 goals to 1. Nicoski kicked 6 for the Eagles and Natanui starred.