North Melbourne “Rue” Loss To Dees

August 12, 2020 by
Filed under: NSW Demons 

Round 11 – Melbourne Vs North Melbourne

Liam Chambers

In an interview after last week’s game, Max Gawn joked that he was worried about Luke Jackson taking his position. After Action’s performance against North Melbourne, you could forgive Gawny for being slightly less jocular. I’m sure Simon Goodwin won’t be standing down Max anytime soon but what a fantastic choice to have.

In a sign of the short time span between games, Aaron vandenBerg was still wearing his bandanna from Round 10 when he ran onto the field. This game was hugely important for both sides but it was the Roos piling on the early pressure. James Harmes took a great mark in the opening minute only to be denied when he tapped Cameron Zurhaar on the thigh in retaliation for a smack to the head. Where’s the justice there?

Majak Daw was gifted a goal when the sherrin landed beautifully at his feet after Jake Lever’s attempt at a one handed mark went astray. The Roos had the best of the game in the first ten minutes with Melbourne struggling to get inside 50.

Christian Petracca looking dangerous was a promising sign though. Mitch Hannan continued his good form, marking and kicking the ball to Sam Weiderman. Sam’s shot hit the post for the Dees’ opening score. At the other end, Vanders gave away a fifty metre penalty for Nick Larkey to slot the Roos’ second. North were looking the better side despite some good moments from the Dees.

Then the King of Spin Kysaiah Pickett ran rings around the defence to score Melbourne’s first. His Uncle watching on, looked suitably impressed. The Roos continued to dominate the footy but the Dees were starting to look more competitive. Not the best end to the quarter though when Larkey got a second in the last minute.

North Melbourne mounted more pressure in the second term but Melbourne was finally starting to break through. Angus Brayshaw was on the receiving end of a kick to inside 50 but quickly learned the meaning of “he who hesitates is lost”. The Demons were definitely more threatening now and started stringing together some decent tackles. A nice kick from Brayshaw to Nathan Jones enabled him to place the footy perfectly into Sam Weiderman’s hands just one metre out from the goal line. Weiderman doesn’t miss too many from that distance.

Unfortunately Sam did miss his next opportunity from twenty five metres out. The new lads were starting to shine with Trent Rivers taking a brilliant mark and Pickett continuing to be highly effective at intercepting and getting the ball to players in good scoring positions. Melbourne were putting North on the back foot but not getting the rewards until a superb sweeping kick from the foot of Brayshaw put the Dees in front.

Nathan Jones was instrumental in the set up and Melbourne were starting to look more comfortable. In a reflection of the first quarter, Nick Larkey again scored for the Roos in the last minute. But with fifteen seconds to go, Weiderman marked the ball in front of goal and this time there was no mistake.

Melbourne started the second leading by five points. Sound familiar? They continued their dominance over the Kangaroos but struggled to hit the scoreboard. Luke Jackson was looking like a complete natural in the ruck as Kysaiah Pickett continued his great kicking and handling coupled with an extraordinary vision for picking out unmarked players. Bailey Fritsch was on the receiving end of one such kick and converted perfectly from forty metres out.

The Roos kept battling but by now the Dees had moved up a gear. The Talented Mr Melksham got himself into a good position to receive the footy from Fritsch and extended the lead. Then the three Weetbix that Tracca had for breakfast finally kicked in and he scored a running shot from forty five metres out. Luckily Bailey Fritsch’s push in the back on the goal line went unnoticed and Melbourne went in at three quarter time leading 50-34.

With the Dees winning the majority of their final quarters this year, the fans were keen to see a brace of goals to push out the lead and increase Melbourne’s percentage on the ladder. Nathan Jones, showing that there’s plenty of life in the old timer yet, kicked an important ball to Melksham who spotted the unmarked Charlie Spargo. Charlie then notched up his first goal after a few games off. Next, after emerging triumphant from the clash of the Maccas, Tom McDonald didn’t disappoint with his set shot from thirty metres.

Despite their complete dominance, Melbourne’s accuracy was letting them down. They could easily have been another three to four goals ahead with ten minutes to go on the clock. The Demons were entertaining though. Tracca the Twist Master, in the middle of a muddle of Roos, kicked the ball to Hannan, who walked the footy in and then walked into the upright. Fortunately there was no damage done to the post.

After some chaotic play outside the goal square, Fritsch finally got a well deserved second goal. Then there was hugs all round as Tom Sparrow kicked his first of the year the Dees. Lucky Clayton Oliver was able to bag goal number thirteen to give Melbourne a lead of fifty seven points and a final score of 92-35.

The Dees were very impressive. If they can up the accuracy of their shots on goal, they will definitely be in with a chance to play finals. So far Adelaide has been the lucky city for the Demons. Maybe we can ask Gillon if we can play the remainder of our games at the Oval. Next we face our old Nemesis. Collingwood have had their own struggles this year but they’ll be at their best when we meet them on Saturday.

Melbourne will have a couple of extra days to recover but we can’t afford to be complacent. Results in recent years have overwhelmingly been in the Pies favour. We need to turn that around. I’m sure Nathan Buckley will be studying our tactics like a man possessed. Then again his judgement may be slipping. Perhaps a relaxing game of tennis could help him refocus.

We definitely play our best footy when we’re winning. If we can get into that space and believe we’re winning even when we’re chasing the opposition, I think we can nail it.

Go the Mighty Dees!!!


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