Carlton defeated Melbourne by 57 points at Etihad (Docklands), our fourth win in a row.

Round 21, 2009

Carlton6.33912.5 7718.911724.9153
Melbourne4.2268.35112.4 7615.696
Venue: Docklands (Etihad Stadium)
Date: Saturday, 22 August Result: Win by 57 points
Umpires: L. Farmer, M. James, T. Pannell Crowd: 37,433
Goalkickers: B. Fevola 7, J. Garlett 4, K. Simpson 3, H. Scotland, R. Houlihan 2, A. Carrazzo, S. O'hAilpin, B. Gibbs, M. Murphy, E. Betts, M. Kreuzer 1.
Reports: Nil Injuries: R. Hadley (Broken Arm)
Ladder Position: 5th

Game Review

The Blues headed into a traditional Saturday afternoon game against the Demons as red-hot favourites even though both sides had won comfortably the previous round. Some bookmakers were offering punters $13.00 for a Melbourne victory in a two horse race such was the Blues’ favouritism, and rightly so, as it panned out.

A single forced change was the only announcement on the Thursday evening leading into the game as first year player Mitch Robinson (diagnosed with a stress fracture in his foot) was replaced by another first year player Jeffery Garlett. Robinson’s injury effectively ended what had been an encouraging debut season for the young Tasmanian. On game day another change would be announced as Dennis Armfield failed to come up from an ankle injury sustained at training during the week and Joe Anderson came in for his third game of the season.

The game started somewhat unexpectedly as the Demons got out of the blocks quickly and the Blues found themselves a goal down in no time at all. The Blues responded with one of their own (through Brendan Fevola) but struggled to get on top early. There was a noticeable drop in the game’s intensity from previous weeks. This seemed to give the Blues a signal to over possess and fiddle with the ball as they moved it forward resulting in some clumsy passages before slowly finding some rhythm. Find it they did, as they piled on six goals for the quarter (six different goal kickers) to Melbourne’s four to take a 13 point lead to the break.

The second term followed much the same pattern as the first, at least as far as the scoreboard was concerned. Another six goals for the Blues; another four for the Demons, and it was fair to say the respective forward lines were having a better time of it. Jeff Garlett and Heath Scotland alternated goals during the first 15 minutes of the quarter, each grabbing two. Garlett, with his lithe, snake-hipped build, proved to be particularly lively with each of this three goals coming from beautiful crumbing work and reading of the play. Brendan Fevola finished the half off nicely. Firstly, with a lovely chase and tackle which resulted in a free kick, where he dished off a cheeky handball to Kade Simpson lurking in the square who did the rest. Not two minutes later it was Fevola (receiving the handball from Chris Judd) poking a little check-side off the outside of his right boot which dribbled through precisely as he had planned.

Jeff Garlett, playing the best game of his short-career, opened the third term with a bang as he sped onto a loose ball deep in the forward pocket and slammed it onto his right boot to banana through his fourth and open up a 32 point break. Not to be outdone Brendan Fevola started a show of his own. During a fifteen minute patch in the middle of the quarter Fevola managed four goals, his fifth for the match was a beauty. After Garlett put a loose kick deep into the pocket Fevola ran onto it and somehow managed to hook it around his body from the boundary line and with a couple of agreeable bounces got full points.

Whist it was Garlett (four goals and seven tackles) and Fevola providing the highlights up forward for much of the game, the supply from the middle had come from the usual suspects as Chris Judd, Bryce Gibbs and Marc Murphy had a bout of leather poisoning, between them clocking up over 100 possessions. Gibbs in particular had a ripper of a game. It would be unfair not to mention Andrew Carrazzo in the midfield highlights. His 35 possessions may not have been quite as classy as those of the triumvirate just mentioned but combined with his five tackles and a precisely slotted goal it certainly was a quality game. Jordan Russell played another nice game in defence and provided some real drive across half back as did Andrew Walker in patches. Walker is still finding his feet after a long absence but is looking better each week.

The Blues closed out the game with another six goals in the last quarter. Kade Simpson was rewarded for a lot of hard running with two goals of his own (three for the match) and Ryan Houlihan bobbed up for the last two goals of the game late in time-on. It wasn’t a remarkable victory by any stretch of the imagination. It was a game the Blues were expected to win and win well, which 57 points says they did. The result allowed them to retain fifth spot on the ladder with one home and away round remaining. Mathematically, the Blues can still finish as high as fourth and as low as seventh depending on how the cards fall in round 22.

The average age of this Carlton team was 24 years and 134 days, with an average League experience of 95.4 games per player. Nick Stevens was the oldest, at 29 years and 231 days and the most experienced with 229 games. Jeffery Garlett was the youngest at 20 years and 19 days old and the least experienced with 9 games.

For the first time in a match Carlton scored 6 goals in each quarter of a match, while the opposition in Melbourne failed by one goal in the last quarter to score 4 goals in each quarter.

For all other cases that Carlton scored the same goal in a match click HERE.


B: 34 Simon Wiggins 18 Paul Bower 32 Bret Thornton
HB:2 Jordan Russell 33 Ryan Houlihan 26 Joe Anderson
C: 1 Andrew Walker 5 Chris Judd (c) 45 Aaron Joseph
HF: 3 Marc Murphy 28 Cameron Cloke 6 Kade Simpson
F: 19 Eddie Betts 25 Brendan Fevola 17 Setanta O’hAilpin
Ruck: 8 Matthew Kreuzer 4 Bryce Gibbs 24 Nick Stevens (vc)
Interchange:10 Richard Hadley 29 Heath Scotland 38 Jeffery Garlett
44 Andrew Carrazzo
Coach: Brett Ratten
Emg: 27 Dennis Armfield, 39 Sam Jacobs, 16 Shaun Grigg

  • Joe Anderson replaced Dennis Armfield in the selected side.
  • Shaun Grigg replaced Chris Yarran in the emergencies.


4 in a row: This was the first time Carlton had won four matches in a row since 2001. Despite our improvement we wouldn't do it again until Round 13, 2011, some 2 years later.
Interesting Fact: This was our 6th highest score in this decade, equalling our score from mid-2001 and being 3 points higher than Round 1, 2009. Our highest score in the 2000's is Round 18, 2000 when we scored 28-12-180 against Collingwood at Optus Oval, Princes Park in the "Last Suburban Battle."

Brownlow Votes

3. Chris Judd, Carlton
2. Brendan Fevola, Carlton
1. Marc Murphy, Carlton

Best and Fairest Votes

36 Marc Murphy, 36 Jordan Russell, 33 Bryce Gibbs, 32 Chris Judd, 30 Brendan Fevola, 30 Jeffery Garlett, 18 Kade Simpson, 12 Ryan Houlihan, 11 Andrew Carrazzo, 5 Heath Scotland

The Ghost article that week

Ashes, Urns, Goals and Sleeping In

There are many sorts of goals. Large goals, like trying to retain the ashes in enemy territory; knowing to lose over there would send the Poms into a delirium only balanced out by our own despair.

I feared for that team, feared the balance was out of whack. I think, in team sports, balance might just about be the most important ingredient, regardless of talent or intent. Geelong, going in to the finals last year, lost its balance (and may be about to experience the same thing again this year). The wrong players injured meant the wrong balance of their team (or they chose the right balance but knew it could not last the whole 4 quarters).

Out of balance, they lost their superiority and the rest, as they say, is history – and seeing as it's Hawk history, let's just forget the rest. One of things Carlton has addressed the last couple of years is the balance of the list. We can see how it's paying dividends. So when that touring list was released I think I knew, then, we were gone. The lads fought well but never managed to dominate, never exerted their will, much like Geelong last year. Without the right mix, that strong will loses itself. So we must wait until the Poms come to our sunny shores to redress this mistake. We must belt them here and send them packing, their tails between their legs and the ashes back in our firm hands.

There are the strange goals, like coming out to play Melbourne on the weekend knowing they would be in that twilight zone, in that horrible place the AFL has constructed called the Priority pick. We Bluebaggers (sadly) know all about that place. We've been there, had the rug pulled from under us and been there, had the rules changed, and been there for Judd and the rest. It's a weird place, a limbo between two seasons, between the season that is and the season that will be. It's football's That Was Then This Is Now.

Buddy was in a similar place on the weekend, another mad zone crafted by the AFL for good intentions but lacking forethought, lacking that wacky American idea of intelligent design. If you take evolution out of the game (and the Priority Pick and The new Bump rule both lack an evolutionary context, both are just ad libs in the Farce of Demitrou or his cronies' minds – a bit like the right whack they gave us and which should never be forgotten or forgiven – which should, in fact, make the return to finals all the more sweeter) then you need intelligent design or all that's left is Chaos.

Anyhow, back to the .4 fraction of a moment that was Buddy's lot. In that moment he had to forgo all the years of football, all of them, chuck them out, forget them, discount them, choose other than them. Yeah right, easy. Belt him for two weeks. The brainlessness of that rule and the decision just shows that none of us should take this great game for granted, at times it ends up in the hands of clowns, and clowns, while funny, in the end, should never run the show.

The game against Melbourne brought back old memories of times long past, the glorious years before arthritis set up house in my joints and Carlton won certain games without ever hitting top gear. That was how it panned out on the weekend. We never lifted above third, they never went flat chat and both teams performed a waltz of sorts, a wirling derva of cosmic particles lost in the turf of a single, rather meaningless game.

We failed in one simple aspect of this game, Haddles got hurt. That hurts. I've liked his return to the side. He wins the hard ball, has clean hands and lets the runners run free. We'll miss him. Other than that though, we ensured Fev grabbed the Coleman and we got to play a bit of Elsie and the cubs, a bit of Born Free football. It was fun, it was a relief to relax and let the boys do the job while my brothers, niece, nephew, son and I enjoyed the easy zone of this game.

There are small goals, small but very important. Like getting out of bed on time, like respecting the efforts of your mates, things like that. It has been disappointing as a fan to hear of the events of Sunday morning. Little events really, no big deal, except that a club coming back from the brink of darkness like we are, must dot all the little i's and cross all the tiny t's.

I applaud the club for the stance, nothing more needs to be said.

So to this game against the Crows, and what an important game it is. None of us wants this first final to be interstate. I want to be there, in the stands, in the flesh, my voice hoarse, my eyes blazing not only with the sight of the lads running rampart but also filled with the memories of the dark times, the penalties, the hard years under Dennis, the shellackings, the pain. Pain is worth every cent when it leads to sunshine. So I want to be there at the M.C.G. (or Ethiad if it must be) with the spring breeze blowing the greatest grass on earth, the sun shining down upon my aging head and my beloved Bluebaggers running out to play finals again – a tear may even be shed - O come on baby let the good times roll!

It's been too long boys, too long for these fading eyes that need reading glasses now, too long for this heart that has less beats left than what it's already beat. So belt the Crows lads, belt them bad. Send them featherless and sad back to that city of Churches. Let their bells toll in despair, let them ring out their defeat while we walk off the sacred turf, heads high, walking straight into September's first great finals week and a home bloody final!

Go Blues!

Fev for 4

Yarran for 4

Simmo for 3

and T-Bird for B.O.G.

Bring on the finals!

Mike and Dan

Mike and Dan’s Play of the Week: Paul Bower

There were many highlights for Blues supporters in the win against Melbourne on the weekend, including Fev’s bag of goals, Judd’s finesse and the savvy crumbing of goal-sneak Jeffery Garlett. But Paul Bower produced the most symbolic act of the game mid way through the last quarter in a contest on centre wing. Carlton, having already secured a finals berth, was 57 points up against a disappointing Melbourne team - far from going through the motions, Bower threw himself at the ball to effect a fantastic smother and prevent the Demons from another forward entry. Mike and Dan spoke to the big West Australian backman before Carlton’s mini-final against Adelaide on Saturday.

Congratulations Paul for this week’s Play of the Week. Can you talk us through the smother?

I had found myself up in the forward line, and had to run back hard and wanted to make sure I was goalside. I saw Aaron Davey receive a handball and didn’t want to give him an easy exit, and I was able to smother his kick and it went out of bounds to make it a fifty-fifty contest from there.

You did it right in front of the interchange bench - was it just to impress the coaching staff sitting down there? Do these things get highlighted after the game?

  • laughs* no it wasn’t just for the coaching staff! We all want to do the team thing and these kinds of things get highlighted during the week. They can help spin the game on its head in close contests and it really gets the boys up and going and is good for momentum.

What impact has the loss of Waite and Jamison had on you in your development in the backline? You have taken a lot more responsibility in their absence.

We have had some really good players come in like Wiggo, Russell and Walker who can all play tall and who have done the job terrifically. T-Bird (Bret Thornton) and I have more support with those players in the team. Anything can happen on the field, injuries happen and we have to do the best we can and hopefully can have a settled line up leading in to the finals.

You love a bit of a run out of the backline. Are you under instructions to do that, or is it something you’ve always done?

A bit of both, it is part of my game and the coaches have really pushed it with us to take a few more risks and to run with the ball but be smart about it. It has really come off lately and a lot of the attacking moves into our forward line start out this way.

Adelaide beat us comfortably earlier in the year. What lessons did we learn that we can use in Saturday’s game?

The number one thing to come out of the game was that if we have too many players behind the ball, when we try to exit there isn’t much to kick to and we get caught out. We have addressed that and will play smarter this time against them.

What impact has your recent re-signing with the club for 2 years made? How much of a difference does it make knowing that you’ll have the same day job for the next couple of years?

I love the club and want to play for the club for the rest of my career. It was exciting to re-sign and know that I will be with the boys for another 2 years and to hopefully play in a successful side.

Not long ago we were sitting at 6 wins, 7 losses and looking like we would be scrapping for a finals place. We’ve since won another 7 games to book our finals spot. What do you put our turnaround in form down to?

It is a combination of a lot of things. Our defensive pressure has really increased and improved, and we have worked on our ability to take game on. We now run more and go through corridor to open the game up. This gives us more attacking options, and more forward 50 entries. As you know if we get it in quickly to the forward line it really helps Fev and others.

You must be excited about playing finals footy. Some of your team mates have been here for many years and this will also be their first campaign at Carlton. What's the mood like?

It is the first final we’ve been in for 8 years or so, and all the boys are looking forward to it. We know that where we finish in the final eight is up to us and we want to put in a good effort to get a home final. Once we get in anything can happen in the finals.

The Essendon v Hawthorn blockbuster starts a couple of hours before our game against Adelaide, and we'll play the winner if we beat Adelaide. Will the boys be keeping an eye on it or will they deliberately give it a wide berth until your game has finished?

Usually we don’t really take much notice of other games when we’re preparing for our own. We will obviously hear score after the game, but during the day we will just concentrate on Adelaide and focus on our plan for that game.

What will happen after the game on Saturday and Sunday? When will the players and coaching staff gather to plan out the week's activities in the lead up to your first final?

We play Saturday and then we will sit down and plan and see what we need to do in the next day or so after that. We’ll plan for who we are going to play, wherever the location will be, and just make sure that we are as well prepared as we can be.

Hadley is a big loss. Who can step up and do the inside work he's been doing in recent weeks?

It was really a disappointment to lose Richard. He has been awesome for us and is aggressive at the ball Grigg and Bentick can play a simlar role and they could come in and do a really good job for us. I’m whoever comes in will do well for the team.

We hear that Aisake O’hAilpin played in the Bullant’s Reserves last week…

That’s right, Aisake is back for a couple of months, and he came back for a run and played with them which was great.

More and more footy players sport a bit of ink on their arms these days. Do you have any plans to add any more?

Not as yet, I am just happy with the one on my arm. I might get another one in the future but will leave it alone for the time being. There are quite a few boys across the league who are getting them done though!

You tend to slip under the radar a bit. Tell us about your life outside of footy. Do you work or are you doing any study?

I am doing a Certificate 3 and 4 of Fitness. I’ve nearly finished Certificate 3 and when I finish my studies I will be able to take clients in Personal Training and have another interest outside of footy.

It is a really interesting field and I am learning a lot from it. It covers all aspects of fitness, training and nutrition and I am enjoying doing it. I’ve learned a lot from the club as well as we have got our own nutritionist, weights coach, and rehab coach and I can also take some of this knowledge and use it with my clients in the future.

Here’s your chance to pay out on some of your team mates. Anyone exfoliating too much, or fancy themselves with the ladies?

I think young Mitch Robinson is a bit loud and doesn’t know when to shut up! Nah, he is a good fellow but needs to calm down a bit sometimes. It has got nothing to do with him being Tasmanian, I think it is just part of his nature!

Paul Bower has taken some big strides since being drafted with pick 20 in the 2005 AFL draft. His speed, agility and endurance have seen him match up well against the likes of Lance Franklin, and his role in the team has become critical since the loss to injury of star defenders Waite and Jamison. The softly spoken Western Australian has so far delivered on his early promise, and he was rewarded with a contract extension that will see him remain a key defender with the club until at least the end of 2011.

Round 20 | Three Suspended, 2009 | Round 22
Contributors to this page: Jarusa , molsey , WillowBlue and snakehips .
Page last modified on Sunday 29 of January, 2023 22:32:27 AEDT by Jarusa.

Online Users

138 online users