The Roar
The Roar


Roar Rookie

Joined January 2023







Order is returned to the world every March.



I’m with naughty and rowdy on Parker. I’ve seen more gentle ice hockey checks (where at least the player wears protection). The ball is 4m out in front of Smith who is way behind the chasing group. A deliberate act from the point at which Parker ignores the ball, passes to the right of the umpire, and starts to line up the hit. His excuse, thinking the fella would naturally brace is ludicrous. Smith wasn’t ready because like everyone who has seen the clip, he knew he was no threat to the active play. Yes, Parker is a hard footballer and respected for that throughout his career, but sorry to say in this case it is not a hard footy act … nothing close to it.

AFL News: Parker cops mega ban from VFL Tribunal for high bump, Thomas charged for alleged 'harassing phone calls'

Can’t find a thing to disagree with. I was surprised they were getting a pass from the media, Fox at least, despite some appalling performances, and not clearly all down to injuries and harsh umpiring. Reminds me of the injury afflicted Eagles seasons. Can’t all be bad luck. And your analysis and insights on the Hardwick and Berge factor are telling. I wondered how Berge’s departure would affect things, and there you have it. Also, a coach still patting his players on the back for effort when there was clearly a lack of it, or indeed misplaced effort due to sheer ‘loser panic’ decision-making, should definitely be questioned regardless of what stage he’s at in his tenure. Disappointing Tige’s Season will be on the 2024 epitaph. A win or two here and there will deliver some respite but no redemption!

From injuries to coaching decisions and even umpiring calls, it's all going wrong at Richmond in 2024

Yeah, good comparison. Or even a Sicily who also started as a forward ruck-rove type, if I recall. We’ll see how it plays out. After the weekend, Cotchin proved he’s still got it on-ball. Might be a tough decision coming up.

Can Richmond thread the needle of not bottoming out?

Agree with some of this but the chip-kick thing is a matter of style in my view. The way he kicks always looks like a chip to the green, even at long distance. And he’s not usually the longest of kicks. I think he does break open games. Putting him back in the middle is what broke open the match early against Freo last week. He’s also been criticised for being dirty in some circles, but I just see him as a master at hustling round the packs, keeps lower than anyone, goes in super hard (especially now given his age and injury risk) with max. impact after a step or two, and gets boot to ball under pressure better than anyone in the game. I see a lot of younger players that look like they modelled themselves on his ability to release the ball to boot regardless of the situation. It ain’t always pretty but that should be a fair counter to the ‘easy kick’ critics.

The Roar's AFL expert tips and predictions Round 14: Get set for another terrible tipping round!

Oh Tim… be even braver. North looks like your only proper long odds punt, and maybe a sulk-pick at that. Add Cats, Giants and Tiges to your tips and you’ll double last week’s effort!

The Roar's AFL expert tips and predictions Round 14: Get set for another terrible tipping round!

I was pretty chuffed to learn that Hopper and Taranto were coming to the Tiges and thought it was a good decision at first, but as soon as I read your thoughts on Hopper’s return, I realised I’d had similar misgivings but hadn’t processed them. When he was out of the side the first time, my instinct was to check if he’d been dropped or was injured, so already that’s a sign I thought the mix of T and H at the bounce wasn’t really working fully, and that Hardwick had cottoned onto it. Compared to the ferociousness of Baker and Cotchin around the ball or at the bounce… and you get an idea why the contested numbers went up. See ball. Get ball. Pass ball. No rocket science needed there. And I should add that Hopper is a quality player but there could be a better place for him in the forward line as another semi-tall to help Jack. I can even see him as a quick (and solid) backman – a Broad or Vlastuin type – and even a Grimes replacement should he get injured or call it quits next year. He’s probably fit and quick enough to run a wing too if a gap opens there due to injury.

Can Richmond thread the needle of not bottoming out?

I have a similar feeling. Hope never fades (in my case) and a return to their natural territory for some players bodes well. Anyway, it seems there are some emerging and maturing talents to keep things motoring forward.

Can Richmond thread the needle of not bottoming out?

Yeah, unless things change at Blues Voss may struggle to get a third strike at it even if such a weird swap were considered. Doesn’t really matter if he’s to blame for the poor showing or not (you imply it’s more on the playing group). It’s the optics of it. Especially when other returnee coaches looked to hit the ground running (Scott, Lyon, and Clark… sort of).

TOM MORRIS: Adam Simpson is exhausted and the Eagles are a rabble. It's time for an amicable split

Even better, Simpson and Voss do a clean swap… solves contract/salary payouts. Both get a new voice in the rooms, and a bit of reset. Both have pedigree but just seem to have lost the mojo in their respective clubs. Stupid idea. But stranger things have happened.

TOM MORRIS: Adam Simpson is exhausted and the Eagles are a rabble. It's time for an amicable split

Coaches have to take some responsibility for the list’s injuries. There must be something in the conditioning, training or general attitude around the club towards risk-reward on-field leading to the excess injuries.

TOM MORRIS: Adam Simpson is exhausted and the Eagles are a rabble. It's time for an amicable split

I see your point about historical changes ultimately making the game safer and perhaps more ‘attacking’, but I don’t agree that the stand rule makes it better as a spectator or that 50m penalties for dissent in the mid-to-forward half are in any way a fair execution of the rules, or indeed the spirit of the game. These two ‘innovations’ also deserve the (somewhat contradictory) mid-season adjustment/exception you develop in this piece. They do not add to the safety nor the beauty of the game. As to the potential farce awaiting the Brownlow Ceremony, I fully agree. Some sort of exonerating clause, or fudge, is needed for this year. And a careful rethink for coming years.

TOM MORRIS: The immediate change AFL must make to save Brownlow Medal from embarrassment

Brave week. Disappointed you didn’t sneak ‘swansong’ into the Buddy and Saints v Swans wrap up. Recent years, Tiges have relished away games so not sure of the home-match advantage in that tip. And signs of an updraft in recent weeks could mean it’s time for a Hawks lift-off. They could use some positive news, anyway.

The Roar's AFL expert tips and predictions Round 13: 350 up for Buddy the brilliant

It’s oversimplifying it to just say they’re too old. Sure, age is a factor. So are injuries. But you’ve also got changes in the game (structural and procedural) that Geelong don’t seem to be on top of. Same could be said of Richmond. Their brands have been hard at it for years (one chaotic, the other controlling, but both with extreme tenacity). And it worked. But when good and fair players like Stewart and Broad (for example) get long bans for overzealous tackles (let’s call it), it starts to play on individual and team psychology. When ‘Do I, don’t I?’ thinking creeps into tackling decision-making it can rob the playing group’s ferocity overall, especially when a bellwether player like Stewart loses confidence in what’s allowed and what’s not.

Too many injuries, or not hungry enough - what's Geelong's real issue in 2023?

Great piece Cameron. Yes, the tetchiness – a micro-twitch too many and that pout – was definitely on display these past few weeks. I wasn’t the least bit surprised by his decision. A little unusual that it was an immediate stand-down, but maybe that was a smart move, too. I can’t see him wanting to coach elsewhere. He’s proud and there’s such a strong legacy now that I doubt he’d want to sully it. My instinct is he’ll turn to another sport or even AFL management. He’s had plenty to say (often veiled, sometimes not) about that over the years. Also, he came back from the States invigorated, and yet somehow it didn’t get channeled into Richmond. A stint coaching or working with US sports? Players have made the hop, so it’s not so far-fetched a coach could do it, especially a true sportsman like Hardwick. I wish him well whatever the decision going forward.

Damien Hardwick: A Richmond man that may never coach again

Well researched and reasoned piece. Simplest is best. One round each and with the Tassie team you’ll have 18, and have a slightly extended playoff series (or two – one for the finals contenders and one for the bottom half to decide on recruitment points or some other also-ran cup). The earlier decision on the double is also a fairer way of levelling up.

An equitable AFL season is impossible with the current fixturing set up

With you on the over-umpiring being the result of fussy rule-making, especially the stand and deliberate rules. It has made the game laughable at time (such theatrics trying not to move a single step or pretending to fumble balls to get them over the line).

Constant rule changes have made umpiring in the AFL impossible - and the game is suffering

West Coast injury troubles. Makes you wonder. They have the same conditions and opportunities as the rest of the league. Are they doing something different in game prep or conditioning? Anyone know? It can’t all be down to bad luck. Maybe it’s psychological now. Added pressure leads to desperation… players trying so hard to compensate that they’re taking more risks and getting hurt. Maybe they’re being pushed harder in training leading to niggles, tears, soft tissue stuff… that other teams can avoid by resting players (a buffer the Eagles no longer has). This needs to be looked into before changing rules wholesale for one team. Perhaps intervention is needed in other ways.

Six Points: The move to save the Swans' season, the worst thing a fan can do, and why the Blues are closer than you think

Tim, agree with pretty much everything, and would even add that Broad’s turn against Cameron was the match-winner. No coincidence that when he came back they started winning again. Very, very underrated… speed ‘and’ endurance + plays much taller (like Grimes). Agree Balta was shaky to start but got a hold of Hawkins when he started legging it round the park. Great as H is, those big trunks are not made for speed. Agree Jack was doing his best against a learning but in-form back-man, but I still wonder about selection when he’s being largely beaten in that solitary role week after week. Was happy to see the big lad Ryan learning the craft. After watching a steady succession of not-quite-there rucks at Richmond (Chol, Soldo) it is comforting to see one finally step up in Nank’s absence.

Footy Fix: Are Richmond back... or is the Tiger time machine good for one trip only?

Wow, well documented piece, and clearly in your wheelhouse as a stats man at ABC. Good you established off the bat you love both codes. I’m only now starting to get a taste for NRL since my kid started playing Union. I prefer League because it keeps moving and, frankly, I understand at least half of the ref decisions, which can’t be said of Union. On your piece, I think you only touched on the two codes in terms of draft/recruiting issues, but surely it also affects the crowds League musters compared to the AFL numbers you quoted. Be interested to see a combined League/Union number versus the AFL average, then. Or is that naive to connect the two as a competing code to Aussie Rules?

Footy race: Well-run AFL is miles ahead of lumbering NRL - and here are six reasons why

Lots going on in this thread. Understandable. Interesting angle of Clarkos turning the mirror on the investigators. See how that plays out. But it’s a fair point on the media leaks. In a legal case there might be issues with the way the evidence is being handled. Respect for evidence should be given to any serious investigation. For the curious, check out the rules of evidence on the gov’t site below. Surprisingly clear reading!!

AFL News: Van Rooyen verdict in, Clarko savages 'shameful' Hawks racism investigation

A bit of both depending on what position you play (Hawkins in a restricted-zone position = mostly strength; Dangerfield in an open paddock = endurance but in his case strength too). Anyway, mostly comes down to your genetics and a bit of good luck on the injury front how long you hang in there. Again at Geelong, look at Isaac Smith. He’s got that ectomorph build – appears agelessly fit.

Debating the fate of AFL players in the twilight of their careers

Damn. Ohtani… nerves of steel. Rest of the world eats away at a US heartland sport. Once watched a top-notch match in Cuba… just local dudes but they were good. Long history in the sport, I guess. Cheers for sharing.

What are the qualities a contemporary AFL captain needs to succeed?

Yes, the Unholy Mess that was Richmond vs. Gold Coast was unwatchable. And if we have to hear one more time how it wasn’t the ‘Tiger brand’… Which is what exactly these days? 10 for a dollar bargain bin footy. There are at least 3 other teams playing a better version of what was once a trademark win-the-ball-at-all-cost brand of brilliant chaos footy. One of them is on top.

Six Points: Pies' crazy bravery trumps critically cautious Crows, and Simpson's pathetic Eagles can't go on like this

Good example. Two captains head to head on the final play. Doesn’t get better than that.

What are the qualities a contemporary AFL captain needs to succeed?

Wines is credible and respected, for sure. Wonder if he’d relish the job though. Seems a reserved guy (at least his public persona). Bit like Dustin Martin at Richmond. Players and public would be onboard if either of them did a captain stint but they might not like the extra attention. Gets back to what you said about the off-field and PR stuff that go with the job.

What are the qualities a contemporary AFL captain needs to succeed?