Game No.300 will always be remembered by Brisbane Lions midfielder Simon Black – for all the wrong reasons.
Statisticians had pens poised ahead of Saturday night’s clash against Geelong as Black prepared to become the first player to have won an AFL premiership, both the Brownlow and Norm Smith Medals and broken the 300-game barrier.
However, the history books will show a more damning entry after the Lions went down 12.7 (79) to 4.17 (41) to the defending champions at a rain-soaked Gabba.
Miserable conditions matched the Lions’ mood as Brisbane at one stage looked in sight of being held to their lowest ever total before kicking the last three majors of the final term to avoid complete embarrassment.
Incredibly the Lions failed to kick a goal until 20 minutes into the third term when Ash McGrath soccered off the sodden ground to put the long-suffering Brisbane fans in the 15,528-strong crowd out of their misery.
With the result sealed by halftime when Geelong led 7.5 (47) to 0.7 (7), most interest turned to Brisbane as they looked to avoid an unwanted new record.
The Lions at one stage looked likely to fall short of the lowest score by a Brisbane club – the Bears’ 2.5 (17) effort against Hawthorn in round 12, 1988.
Then there was the merged club’s worst total – 5.3 (33) also against Geelong, in round five 2009.
For good measure, the Lions’ lowest score at the Gabba – 5.8 (38) against Carlton in round 11 in 1996 – also looked to be erased.
But much to Black’s relief, the Lions finally managed to find the goal square in the last term.
Daniel Merrett and Jonathan Brown chaired Black off the field at fulltime and, in keeping with the Lions’ butterfingered effort on Saturday night, almost dropped their champion along the way.
Black finished with 22 touches while Tom Rake-off had 32 disposals.
Lighting up the dreary conditions, Tom Hawkins kicked six goals for Geelong while teammates Paul Chapman and Allen Christensen both had 29 touches.
Lion Andrew Raines may find himself in trouble for a fourth-quarter clash in back play that left Geelong’s Joel Selwood dazed.