WOOWWWWW - was what i made of the absolute masterful team effort we displayed today for our last game of the Pambula carnival.
We were up against the Mornington Peninsula Raiders - i think we scraped home last year thanks to a late goal from Chief - but this year our team game was on display at one of the highest levels for some time. I think the end score was about a dozens goals + points to a single goal + points to the opponents.
Facing the potential 2 mini games, start stop etc - we consulted our opponents who happily agreed to merge the two mini games into one full game of 4 x 15min qtrs so we could all get it over and done with (extra beer & relax time etc), so that was appreciated by all.
We just managed to have enough blokes to make up a team with a handful of guys leaving yesterday - and thought we would be in for a really tough match. Not so as it happens...
Manny led the way, as per the whole carnival he was 2nd to none in his efforts around the ball - always scrapping, bashing, crunching and fighting for the ball. He was rewarded with a couple of majors also i think for the last game - huge effort. Down in the trenches with him was Stix - or as we say now - pick up Stix, cause he was always down doing the hard stuff - 2nd, 3rd, 4th efforts - remarkable to watch. And while we were playing pick up Stix, we played some Marbles as well - Micky S had another great day out doing the hard stuff and delivering with accuracy to his team mates with great composure. In the ruck, big Pauly went like a diesel engine all day, until he copped a knee to the ribs that sidelined him - hopefully no damage done. But don’t worry, cause Lockers was a sight to behold, he absolutely had a blinder, rucking, making himself a big grab target, and dishing off neat handballs in tight spots.
Lets go to the brick wall defence line. New Dazz was dazzling - he was the superglue that held the backline together, and truly deserved B.O.G for the last game. Sizzling passes out of the last line of defence to get us moving forward. He had awesome assistance from Benny hoovering up the debris, Mungers as tough as ever swapping onto the wing, used his noggin to end up with a split nose, but he’s tough - great work Mungers. We had great help from Chris (ex ACT now Buccs player) who helped fill the important centre half back and help repel all that came his way - until he needed a rest in the forward pocket - to also add a couple of majors - thanks Chris. Then we needed someone to step into this vital role - and when asked - Squirts was right up for the challenge and did a splendid job using his great aerobic stamina to hold the wall. I think yours truly was in the back line and enjoyed a few flashbacks of yonder year, with dashes out of the back line (after of course making sure he kicked a few majors at FF first). Adds continued his mastery of being the clean up sweeper all game until he felt a little strain in his bicep - so he was ordered to the sideline and hopefully no damage done.
Down to the powerhouse forward line - Shorty had a day out with 5 big ones - a bag, purse or whatever you call it, he had it. He even kicked what would have had to be goal of the carnival - at about 45 out (cause he told us he can’t kick that far anymore) he launched the big Torp - which everyone on the field including the opposition watched pass through comfortably and everyone was impressed. Bowie switched and swatched his way around the forward line setting up goals for the other lads and also helped back when we needed him. Ange was sneaky and provided some good options for us as well contesting well.
Across the middle we welcomed the fresh legs of Cuzzo who appreciated the extended run and proved to be the vital link man when needed - without giving his hammy a hard time. Robbie E continued his amassed possession hoarding to distribute the ball all over the joint. Gazza had an impeccable game, neatly delivering accurate kicks to team mates and played really well. Billy turned up to be the pinch hitter for the day - who needs to train hey Billy. He got clear, received the ball and moved it on perfectly.
Play of the day, no wait…….play of the carnival in fact - well that goes to Gaters no question. Gaters - (and i’m sure he won’t mind me saying so) out Nufftyfied himself today. Having watched our beloved Magpies the night before, he thought he would emulate kicking the goal post just like the Collingwood bloke did to break his leg. Having received a nice handball over the top into an open goal square - Gaters trotted up to the goal and simultaneously kicked the ball and the post - resulting in a quizzical look on his face, laughter heard from all reaches of the ground - but a handy point of course. But lets not let that minor incident outshine his otherwise backline ball magnet efforts, running, hand passing, kicking everywhere. If only we had that one on Cocky telly hey Gates!!!
I have no doubt that coach Cav would have been impressed with our switching, finding the open man, flowing link ups of one two kicks and handballs, but probably most of all the team effort. We all backed each other up. Everyone put so much pressure on them, they rarely got multiple possessions, which made it easier for us to grab the turn overs and make them into scoring opportunities. Great effort lads - you should all be happy with your game.
We can not forget to thank Ryan who ran awesome water all weekend - thanks mate. Stainer for running the board for the last game, Blue for all other support and being around and i think he will have some pics to send through to the website, Sue for all the Easter eggs etc. I hope i didn’t miss anyone.
Great way to finish a great carnival guys,
Substitute Coach for the day,
p.s our thoughts go out to Lance - our umpire who became very ill today and we trust he is recovering well - we all know how hard it is to umpire a bunch like us so we really appreciate his efforts.