You wouldn’t bloody believe it, Pies fans.
Robert Harvey decided he wasn’t Nathan Buckley, we opened our game up and we bloody won and, even if we didn’t get the result it wasn’t torture to watch.
How refreshing was that?
The Tigers led for more than 80 minutes of the match and yet there was not one threat of violence against the television.
It was clear early that the instruction out of the coaching box was to play with freedom. The Pies were relentlessly looking for the kick into the corridor, to play on and kick to a lead.
On occasion, this led to a turn over and a goal from the Tigers, but fortune favours the bold, who dares wins!
If greatly we dare, then greatly, we may fail, but I would rather us fail greatly than fail meekly.
While we are on an onslaught of quotes, “Without commitment you will start, but more importantly, without consistently you will never finish”.
So what are we looking for now? Consistency.
Consistently dare, Robert Harvey, and we may consistently win.
For an entire match, we dared, and we were an inch off here or an inch off there, and the Tigers capitalised. The signs were there, though our midfield was on fire.
Taylor Adams was an absolute raging bull (he went over 60 per cent by foot this week).
Jordan de Goey is finding his groove in the middle, showing – dare I say it? – Dusty-like ability and The Old Rolls Royce, Scott Pendlebury, yet again had an unheralded performance (90 per cent by foot in the contest is something else). His ability to slow time is something to behold.
Jack Crisp continues his push for a first best and fairest at Pie Land and Calllum Brown was fantastic through the middle, benefiting from the the absence of Josh Daicos with some legitimate midfield minutes.
I’m big on Callum as a pure mid, but I’m afraid he’s going to have to find a way to be more of a threat in another position on the ground as the line for midfield minutes may not get shorter for a couple more years.
The dominance at stoppage is not without contribution from the Tigers; Maribor Chol and Marlion Pickett were lambs to the Brodie Grundy slaughter.
In defence, although predictably scored on more freely, we still had some serious winners.
Braydon Maynard has been our most important player since Darcy Moore went down. His work on tall forwards has been nothing short of incredible.
Bruzzy, as he is affectionately known, has up until this year spent the vast majority of his playing time as a small-to-medium rebounding defender and has taken the chocolates against one of the best key forwards of the last five years in Jack Reiwoldt.
He held Jack to four marks, two of which and his lone goal were when Bruzzy was off the ground with what looked like a serious collarbone injury after he laid a patented bone crunching tackle. He came back on to finish the game.
Another winner in defence and winner of the freedom play was John Noble. There was a play a minute from halftime kicked off by Noble that could have been our best for the day.
He played on from a mark deep in a defensive pocket with a dart straight into the corridor. This led to a chain of hand balls, a kick and a Darcy Cameron mark in the goal square, taking the ball coast to coast in 15 seconds. You could feel the confidence and dare build.
At the start of the third quarter, we had a similar hand ball chain through the middle kicked off by young Isaac Quaynor that threatened to set the Pies ablaze, but alas, Jack Crisp was just off target.
Quaynor continues to mature greatly and you feel has taken on more medium defensive responsibility as Maynard looks after a tall.
Jordan Roughead was his ever reliable best and our Wings in Will, Will Hoskin-Elliott and Chris Mayne, worked hard all day.
I will take a moment here and its something I have already spoken about this year, but I was hard on Will Hoskin-Elliott at the start of the year. Real hard.
I may have called for a retirement, but good golly that bloke has turned his year around with his move onto a wing. He looks like a new man and I take my hat off to him. Well done.
Up forward, without the human roadblock in Mason Cox, our boys were free to move and lead. It looked far less congested and as stated, Billy Elliot prospered from the baby giraffe’s absence, kicking three straight, with 21 touches and five tackles.
He is an absolute star, our best forward by a mile and he does not deserve the ball and chain that is Coxzilla weighing him down.
Darcy Cameron played well, kicking two and grabbing seven marks, working up the ground well at times. Brody Mihocek played with desperation all day and I feel a big one coming for him soon.
The kids: Browny was probably our best along with IQ, with decent performances from Trent Bianco, Oliver Henry and Trey Ruscoe as the medi-sub.
Now, we will wrap it up with the last quarter. Twenty minutes of football bliss for Pies fans.
If I had it my way, the article would stop here and I would insert a replay of the last quarter.
In lieu of that, I will leave as I came.
Who dares wins.
We dared and we won.