By The Silver Bullet
If warning bells weren’t ringing at AFL House after Round 1, then they must surely be now or the Emperor needs to get out more. Where to start? How about with the Suns?
$144m on a new stadium, $7.5m for Ablett and $2m for Karmichael Hunt, plus buggering up the draft system for the other 16 clubs for some years and the best they could do is get thumped by 119 points – by the Silvertails! Oh yeah, we all know about the talk about a youthful squad and how hard it is to make inroads into rugby league heartlands but remember no new club (before now) has started with less than six wins in their opening season and no new club did not start without a fair bit of local support behind it – think Fremantle, the Crows, Port Power.
There is no way the Suns are going to rack up that many wins unless they draw Port and North Melbourne in the round robin tournament from hell that lasts 20 weeks!
All the Suns did on Saturday night was to remind one of the glory days of the Brisbane Bears when highly paid stars wandered around Cavill Avenue getting fat as quickly as they scored a tan and all the blame also then went to the young kids who needed time to develop. No one was ever sure whether they were referring to developing their skills or their melanomas.
The decision of Eddie Everywhere’s Mini Me, James Brayshaw to refuse to go to the Gold Coast themselves, armed with millions, is looking more and more silly as time goes on with both the AFL and the Kangaroos losers, not to mention the league as a whole as these silly draft picks go on for years and all those additional funds going to prop these ventures up aren’t spent where it might have been useful.
The Brisbane Bears are now of course the Lions and they too can now be officially be placed on the critical list – the curse of Brendan has really come home to roost after their drubbing today at the hands of the Dogs – along with North Melbourne and Port Power. Wow, what a fabulous cock-up was that and noone but poor Brendan has yet to be sacked.
As for Port, a beautiful Adelaide day, first home game of the year, Port Power and Port Magpies double header and the body count at its finish was a mere 23,214 (which incorporates a few strange vagaries of accounting that helps get the numbers up.) The geniuses at the SANFL in Adelaide think a move to Adelaide Oval will produce average crowds of 50% more – ye Gods, what have they been smoking?
Which leads to another AFL problem and that is crowd numbers. Last week produced the lowest Round 1 attendance for five years. This week no games got to 50,000 and three drew less than 30,000. Maybe fans are just a bit slow out of the blocks this season but this week’s rivalry round, including Friday night’s Carlton / Collingwood blockbuster will be a big litmus test. But remember this stat – Richmond / Carlton round 1 clashes the past two years have drawn 80,000+, this year, 60,000.
Finally, it is good to see Australia’s favourite recovering drunk and gambler progressing so well, this time playing for Narre Warren yesterday – sent off after a run in (including a guernsey tearing scratch fight) with a prime candidate for the cast of Australia’s Biggest Loser. Does Fev not realise that in the Amateur grades he now graces that he has to both stitch his own guernsey and wash it and the cost of replacing a jumper for his club is the equivalent of the proceeds of a Saturday night’s meat tray raffle?
Still, it’s good to see his old man cheering Brendan on from the side lines and me thinks the best chance Fev has of getting back into the professional ranks is for Dad to quickly get himself appointed to the committee of the club of choice and then do the Damir Dokic ugly parent shtick to get Fev a game.
Just for the moment, Fev is not one of Emperor Demetriou’s problems which is about the only good news he can enjoy after Round 2.
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