Mallee Grand Final

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Mallee Grand Final Empty Mallee Grand Final

Post by Lee on Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:15 pm

Ever year for some years now, I've travelled to the Mallee towns for Grand Final day. It's a lovely occasion which I wrote about a couple of years ago.

This year, the Grand Final, between Pinnaroo and BDT (Borrder Downs Tintinara) was one for football and one for the 'anything can happen in footy' file.

Picture a large ground, with a strong wind favouring left of screen (not sure which direction Lameroo Oval is). BDT kick with it to start proceedings, but Pinnaroo look the better team by far and kick 2 goals into the wind to BDT's 3 with it, with two of their forwards dominating. It doesn't take long for Pinnaroo to continue their superiority in the second quarter and they lead by roughly 6.8 to 3.5 at half-time.

Ten minutes into the thrird quarter and Pinnaroo are still in front and nullifying BDT's wind advantage pretty well. My West Adelaide friend then says 'this game is done and dusted'. I agreed.

Enter Josh Richardson, a long time good player for BDT, with (I think) 2 other brothers playing in the same side. Josh isn't tall and I think he could be described as 'nuggety', in a good way. Josh kicks a goal, BDT start to lift, Pinnaroo start to wonder what's going on. Josh kicks another, Josh kicks another, Josh kicks another, Josh kicks 5 for the quarter, to make his match tally 6. BDT lead by 4 goals at three quarter time. BDT have the momentum. BDT have the belief.

The last quarter, now far from being a triumphal procession by Pinnaroo, becames crucial.

Pinnaroo have the wind and attack constantly. BDT tackle, BDT scrap. BDT turn it into an arm wrestle. It's not pretty football and the umpires work overtime calling ball ups, the ball ups are merely a prelude to the next ball up and then spectators start thinking about time left to play. Pinnaroo snag a goal, BDT start getting forward entries, then Pinnaroo get another goal. With the points added, the margin gets to about 9 points or so. BDT stay desperate, Pinnaroo are just as desperate, time ticks by, not much time on, siren.

Pinnaroo are gutted. Victory had slipped away and the victory was well deserved by a team that didn't give up, against another team who fought it right out. Pinnaroo had lost another nail biter two years ago and BDT had won something like 6 or 7 of the last 7 or 8 premierships.

With other West people I hand out the medals. Josh Richardson, who kicked the goals, gets the WAFC Most Valuable player, but his brother Lachie gets the BOG. Rory O'Driscoll gets the WAFC MVP fopr Pinnaroo, but he was well supported by Alex Keough, Nick Hyde and all the other players. The BDT players are introduced one by one, including Alex Stidiford who played at West and who had a good game. Matthew Dent is the coach, Pinnaroo walk off dejected and BDT celebrate.

I love Mallee footy. It's not easy for country leagues right now, but as I leave Lameroo for home after a long day, I wouldn't have missed it for quids.
Lee
Lee

Join date : 2011-12-05
Posts : 7124
Location : Talking footy
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Mallee Grand Final Empty Re: Mallee Grand Final

Post by BD on Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:40 pm

Love it, Lee. Always good to read about Mallee footy, especially when it's a big game.
BD
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Join date : 2014-03-10
Posts : 14
Location : Sydney
Teams : Adelaide Uni, UNSW, North London Lions
My club : sturt

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Post by Scrunch on Tue Sep 10, 2019 9:11 am

Great write up Lee, sounds like a classic old school footy GF. Must have been a bitter pill for Pinaroo to win 3 of the 4 quarters but lose the match. That’s the beauty and heartache of footy all at the same time. It’s why the game consumes us at times irrespective of which side we were on.
Scrunch
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Join date : 2013-02-10
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