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Post by Detective Bloodhound on Sat Apr 20, 2019 12:56 pm

That was a long sleep between articles Very Happy

The Bloodhound sems to have a bit more time again, so back to the kennel to enjoy a win and have a bit of banter with all the Bloods' fans.

I've been otherwise engaged at the club for the last year or two, but that was brought to an abrupt halt, so time to enjoy watching from outside again.  And what a time to start, with a great win against a side we've always struggled to beat.  Our last win at Richmond was, I think, when my idol, Timothy Symes, was playing for Benalla under 12's.  Or perhaps when Tommy Keough and Matthew Rankine kicked 4 goals each a little later, in an upset win when Collo was coaching.

I rocked up to sit in my usual grandstand seat near the stats boys and girls, under the coaches' box.  I like sitting there, especially when there's a turnover and you can enjoy the noise and furniture-banging emanating from the wise men sitting in the box.  I got a shock, though. I was asked for $5 for sitting in the grandstand where I've sat for years, free.  Nothing against the nice man asking, but it didn't go down well with many people, who seemed to regard it as a disincentive to come and support the Bloods, epecially when relatives were volunteering 2 metres away doing stats.

Worth a try to help the club finances, perhaps, but sometimes the financial benefit drowns out the personal effect on the absolutely most loyal Westies' supporters who sit there.  Besides, I doubt the income would have coverd the wages, but there you go.  It certainly didn't impress a 200 game player Life Member whose comments made it clear he wasn't impressed.  Learning curve, though.

Our mood changed quickly however, as we watched our Reserves clean up the Eagles, then we settled in for the obligatory defeat to the Eagles. We kicked as many goals in the first quarter as we had for the whole game last week.  I'd already forgotten last week by quarter time.  All I can say is we're all in love with Will Snelling.

What is it about football that a team can change so much in a week?  I haven't seen West go from lousy to brilliant in a week for so long.  Well, since Round 3 last year, actually.  I thought of our Coach and have contented myself that the only saving feature of our form this season before yesterday was to possibly observe the rare phenomenon of a redhead going grey at a rapid rate, if that was possible.  Your Bloodhound has done many jobs around the club, but League Coach isn't one I've ever coveted (although, now I think about it, the Bloodhound would probably take us top).

The Bloodhound has a keen eye for a good footballer, almost as good as most reading this, so I watched Patrick Fairlie closely as he collected 36 possessions against North a couple of weeks ago.  He's not the quickest player going around, but he's a footballer and he knows where his teammates are. (C'mon, you're fined at the first thought of Greg Williams).  He's not letting us down.

What do we make of Gibbo?  Gave a couple of goals off, could have kicked 5 easily as he's usually a clinical finisher.  However, you've got to like a bloke who kicks a check-side from a set kick 70 meteres out.  Gibbo knew what he was doing and why and his teammates will one day work it out.  He adds unpredictability to the team.  great bloke, too and credit to him for getting to where he is under difficulties.

Your Bloodhound, and a fellow supporter on the Recruiting Committee whose name we won't mention, noticed a few years ago that the Murray Bushrangers had 4 of their first five best players drafted, but not the runner-up in their B & F.  The fellow supporter, David Tidsw....., bugger, forgot, sorry, actually noticed it first, but I've claimed it since, but the net result is that Murray Waite showed us yesterday what he had to offer and it was excellent.  Next step for Muzza is to make the last quarter as good as the first, but that will come.  The Bloodhound also noted that a large contingent of family and friends regularly come over from Wangaratta (?) or thereabouts to watch Murray and they certainly got their money's worth yesterday.

As Molly would say (in fact he has said it a lot) "do yourself a favour" and go to watch the Under 16's next Saturday in their first final.  I've watched 4 of their last five games and it's a treat.  Huge talent and a 170cm and 51kgs young lad, Charlie Pridham, racking up 35 possessions, a CHB Jack McArdle looking like a high draft pick and a host of exciting players.  Enjoyable footy and I got an added bonus watching the Football Manager sweeping floors at 9pm to have them clean for the next day.

If you remember Henstridges' buses, they appear early in my book, which is off to a good start (the book, not the bus) but has a long way to go.  It will celebrate our club, epecially over the last 30 years, lots of good stories, lots of behind the scenes experiences, lots of players' biographies and hopefully a good read for all SANFL people.

Nice to be back.
Detective Bloodhound
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Post by RODH2 on Sat Apr 20, 2019 2:52 pm

Like and a re-tweet for this one! I wonder what members thought of the $5 charge to get in the Grand-stand.........oh, wait a sec!! scratch
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Post by Hotdip on Sat Apr 20, 2019 2:58 pm

RODH2 wrote:Like and a re-tweet for this one!  I wonder what members thought of the $5 charge to get in the Grand-stand.........oh, wait a sec!!    scratch
I wonder if you went
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Post by RODH2 on Sat Apr 20, 2019 3:19 pm

No, Hotdip, I've been picking and choosing the games I attend for many years now. Is that Okay?
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Post by 113 on Tue Apr 23, 2019 9:21 am

I for one welcome the charge to sit in the stand, Ive been paying an annual fee along with my membership for reserved seating for years, the same seats that have been in my family almost since it was built, only to find on game day it was a free for all, and having to regularly ask people to move and inform them these seats are reserved. If you want to pay less book a seat for the year, support the club. I just wish they'd label the seats "reserved "
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Post by Lee Harradine on Tue Apr 23, 2019 3:41 pm

Wher do you sit, 113?

As I understand it, the centre section is reserved and I agree with that.

If you've paid for particular seats, I agree you should be able to have them.

I think some warning should have been given instead of officials coming into the stand to check on people.
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Post by 113 on Tue Apr 23, 2019 4:03 pm

Yes I'm in the "reserved" centre section and yes some warning should have been given. You can reserve seats in the westies side, a few years back the tried to move us over there
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Post by Lee Harradine on Tue Apr 23, 2019 6:10 pm

Yes, the centre section should be for Westonians, etc. I was only talking about the northern section .
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Post by Lee Harradine on Fri Apr 26, 2019 10:50 am

Isn’t it great to see the recovery of the vandalised trees at Richmond Oval?  I’d like to think it’s a metaphor for the resilience of the West Adelaide Football Club.  For a long time, your Bloodhound has wrestled with the one question that is key to whether our football tree is vandalised or healthy.  That question is the perennial ‘are we a football club needing money to field a good team?’, or ‘are we a business that exists to give a football club the basics?’.  Perhaps it’s not as clear-cut as that and there’s a lot of shade in between, as Boards, CEOs and everyone involved try their best for the benefit of the club, but priorities differ.  Put the Bloodhound down as being totally in the camp of “Football first”.

So we lost to Glenelg.  The facts are that we've given the coach a team one good player short, through salary cap restrictions from the SANFL as a condition of significant funding.  Last season we gave the coach a team 2 good players short, but the Board managed to have that improved to only one this season.  To me, put another good marking forward in the team and we beat Glenelg. Two other clubs made the choice to refuse the extra SANFL funding and stand on their own feet, come what may.  It’s not an easy decision for a club recovering from financial stress, so there’s no right or wrong, but put the Bloodhound consistently in the camp of those who want to stand on our own feet, come what may.  I believe we have a strong heart.

The Reserves won easily.  I saw Nathan Batley play like a man who wants to regain his league spot.  I’m liking the improvement in Sam May, I think Tom Morrish will be a handy player as he settles in to the change from country football and I’m liking Chol Majok’s development as a footballer.  Tom Pillion looks back on track and Nigel Osborn keeps giving 100% each outing.

So to the main game and we saw another blistering first quarter of footy from the boys.  Good skills, great run, dominating the clearances and looking much quicker than Glenelg.  How long has it been since we’ve seen the breakaway speed that Murray Waite is showing?  The Bloodhound checked his detailed records of leading bouncers of the football to see if Murray was catching up.  It showed Daniel Caire a mile in front, of course and there is a reference all Bloods’ supporters know about the bounce decades ago that stayed in the muddy surface as the player ran past. (A prize for the first poster to name the player).

I was thrilled watching Muzza and just as thrilled watching John Noble.  I was part of the syndicate that purchased John in the Bloodstock Stakes last year and thought the coaches dudded us by not naming John BOG every week, but he’s developing nicely.  I’m not going to say more about one of my new favourites, Josh Ryan, but I love his approach to the game.  His opponent kicked 9 goals a few weeks ago and didn’t get a mark against Josh this week, finishing with one point.  Bugger, I said I wouldn’t say more about him, but I did.

I was glad to see Keelan Laube selected.  He had a hard job for a second game player, but stuck to his task and looked like a regular league player of the future.  He looked a little nervous at times, especially coming out of defence and being a little unsure, but I like him.  Future wingman.

In contrast to our first quarter, our last quarter was stodgy, safe (maybe not), reactive football.  Stop, down the line stuff which I am sure isn’t part of the game plan, which clearly is the way we played in the first quarter.  Fitness? Enough has been said about that and it will be a major topic for the powers-that-be to consider at the appropriate time.

I spoke about the grandstand seating last week and it was sort of policed this week, but I’m still not sure of the rules.  Not sure if it’s $5, but free to sit with the heathens that support our opponents at the southern end.  If so, heaven forbid.  Also not sure that the return is worth the angst, as there’s always plenty of spare seats at the northern end.  I do agree that the centre section should be reserved solely for those good members who have paid their dues.

The Bloodhound doesn’t see as well as he used to.  Most of my life I’ve instantly recognised any West Adelaide player on a rainy day by the colour of their eyes or the shape of their elbows, but now I only see red and black jumpers (unless it’s Beechy, Muzza or John Noble, of course). So I took myself off to the Optician and now have to have a cataract operation in June.  I now find it essential to watch with binoculars.  I have a small pair which enables me to make out a few more players, but it isn’t ideal.  Enter Michael Memmler, previously a very good and supportive Board Member.  Mike’s binoculars are often on loan to NASA or the Mt Stomlo observatory (is that still going?).  I now watch with those and can now recognise players by the colour of their eyes or the shape of their elbows.  Actually, with Mike’s binoculars, I can see a lot more, but we won’t go into that.  I think Mike lends them to me on the request of Chief Statistician, Kevin (Skinny) Joseph, who is always appreciative of the fact that I sit nearby, ready to cover for him if he panics about calling.

A bit of a break before the next game now.  There will be several players available for selection – Haysman, Agostino, Evans (L) and Bates (Z) among them.  On Sunday, however, I’ll be at Richmond at high noon to enjoy watching our highly talented Under 16’s play against Norwood in the Preliminary Final.
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Post by Lachlan on Fri Apr 26, 2019 1:14 pm

It’s great to have ‘Detective Bloodhound’ back, he has been badly missed. I hope he will be doing a weekly report.
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Post by mikeme on Fri Apr 26, 2019 3:59 pm

Mike’s binoculars are often on loan to NASA or the Mt Stomlo observatory (is that still going?). I now watch with those and can now recognise players by the colour of their eyes or the shape of their elbows. Actually, with Mike’s binoculars, I can see a lot more, but we won’t go into that. I think Mike lends them to me on the request of Chief Statistician, Kevin (Skinny) Joseph, who is always appreciative of the fact that I sit nearby, ready to cover for him if he panics about calling. (quote)

On Loan normally means there is a transaction of some kind that occurs?
Can't wait to write up the invoice
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Post by Lee Harradine on Fri Apr 26, 2019 5:08 pm

To NASA? (he says, hopefully).
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