The Melbourne Jemons?

My friend and fellow football-devotee Gareth was listening to the West Coast v Melbourne match just a couple of weeks ago on the wireless, and couldn’t help but notice the immense number of players in red and blue whose name started with the letter ‘J’.

On closer inspection, he found that no less than eleven Melbourne players names began with the letter ‘J’ in the round 3 match, which may be some sort of record. I haven’t had the time to check as yet. Eleven, that’s 50% of the team.

They were as follows…

Jamie Bennell, James Frawley, Jack Grimes, Jeremy Howe, Joel Macdonald, James Magner, Jordie McKenzie, Jared Rivers, James Sellar, Jack Trengove, Jack Watts.

I’ve hear Gold Coast’s Karmichael Hunt referred to as ‘K’, but the Demons will need to be a little more creative with their nicknames. Perhaps that has been the problem these first few rounds.

‘J’ is for Jumper…Melbourne’s proposed 2012 guernsey

Nice Statistic #5 Richmond’s Tassie Gold

As North Melbourne are set to embark on their Tasmanian experiment this weekend with their first home match at the picturesque Bellerive Oval, my mind wandered down to the Apple Isle and it’s impact on Australian Football. The names Nash, Hudson, Balldock and Stewart are uttered with great reverence, such is their standing in our game.

Though recent years have seen Hawthorn, St.Kilda and now North call Tasmania it’s second home, it is my club, Richmond, who appears to have a special connection with Tassie, especially when it comes to the glamour forward.

 Now this is a little strange. From 1967 through to the present day, there have been just three years in which Richmond’s attack has not been spearheaded by a Tasmanian.

 -Royce Hart 1967-1977

-Michael Roach 1977-1989

 -Matthew Richardson 1993-2009

-Jack Riewoldt 2007-?

 Sure, that’s really something. But consider the patterned symmetry of their guernsey numbers-

That’s right… there’s certainly something in the waters down at Punt Road. Yet even more eerily, consider their names…

Royce, Roach, Richo, Riewoldt! The four Richmond R’s! What’s going on here? Is it the ghost of the extinct Tasmanian Tiger leading all these key forwards to Tigerland? Who can be sure?

 

 I have mentioned the symmetry of jumper number, name and position, however there is clearly one piece of the puzzle still missing. Will Richmond recruit a Tasmanian key forward in ten years time, whose name begins with ‘R’ and will he be given the number 4 guernsey? Time will tell.

Now Brendan Gale (proud Tasmanian and Richmondite), there’s a task for you! A tradition worth preserving.

PS. Not only have these players contributed to the Richmond cause, the three players whose careers have been completed were bestowed the honour of making the Tasmanian Team of the Cenruty. Can you spot Royce, Roach and Richo?

PPS. Off the very top of my bonse…I’ve also thought of Benny Gale and Justin Plapp as other Tassie forwards to grace Richmond’s forward line. Who have I missed and who are your favourites?

This post was proudly brought to you by the letter R and the numbers 4, 8 & 12!

With a little help from my friends…
All the stats –http://stats.rleague.com/afl/afl_index.html
Royce pic-http://www.richmondfc.com.au/Portals/0/images_richmond/100%20Moments/Brave%20acts/BAOTC_Hart.jpg
Roach pic- http://www.oztradingcards.com/USERIMAGES/roach78.jpg
Richo pic-http://images.theage.com.au/ftage/ffximage/2009/05/10/richo_highfive_narrowweb__300x375,0.jpg
Riewoldt pic- http://resources1.news.com.au/images/2010/12/14/1225971/137581-jack-riewoldt.jpg
Tassie Team of Century pic- http://www.jcap.com.au/images/jc/TAS-TOTC-med.jpg

Nice Statistic #4 Andrew Underwood

Having already explored the intrinsic link between David Cloke’s career and the number 3, I thought it time to look at the numbers of another dual club player, Andrew Underwood.

Underwood played with SANFL club Sturt from 1985-1988 before being drafted by then VFL club Essendon. After two seasons at Windy Hill, he transferred to Richmond for a season, before returning to Sturt after not being required by incoming Richmond coach Allan Jeans.

Andrew Underwood at Sturt post AFL career and importantly post mullet! Pic from http://www.sturtpics.com.au

So where does the number 12 fit in? Underwood was the last player to don the number before a young Matthew Richardson commandeered it in 1993, taking the number 12 guernsey in his only season with the Tigers in 1991. He played 12 games with Essendon, and 12 games with Richmond. His career of 24 games saw him play in 12 wins and 12 losses, while in his first season at Essendon, he played no games after round 12.

His first season saw him accumulate 112 kicks, while in his career he received 12 frees for in home matches and conceded 12 frees against in away matches.

While his career at Tigerland was brief, I will forever remember him for his part in Richmond’s shock win over his former club Essendon at Windy Hill in 1991, a lovely way for Richmond to sign off from that suburban ground. Underwood played an integral part in the win, yet the part I remember most was the picture of him in the paper following the match…hulking arms raised in defiance to his former home crowd as he left the field a winner, the last time he would do so as a league player.

I have been unable to locate this picture, though I was able to find the old match report from the Herald-Sun. “Obviously I wanted to play well against my old club, I had a point to prove. They let me go at the start of the season…I wanted to prove them wrong.” The report went on to say that Underwood gathered 23 possessions off half-back, going through four opponents; Ian McMullin, Michael Long, Tim Watson and flatmate Brad Fox! “Not a word was passed between us.” 

Andrew Underwood signed my book at the 1991 Richmond Family Day/Best & Fairest Count. He was soon to be let go.

With a Little Help from my friends…

@andreamaryb for informing me of the Underwood #12 files

http://stats.rleague.com/afl/stats/players/A/Andrew_Underwood.html

http://www.sturtpics.com.au

Tigers of Old, by Paul Hogan

(Interestingly, though Andrew Underwood was the last player to wear the number 12 before Matthew Richardson, Andrew finishing in 1991 and Mattew starting in 1993, a 1992 record I have lists Reserves coach Peter Schwabb as number 12 for the reserves. The book ‘Tigers of Old’ shows no record of him playing a game for the Richmond seconds, though this happened from time to time due to player shortages.)

Nice Statistic #3 David Cloke + 3 = interesting

Former Richmond and Collingwood footballer David Cloke’s career was dominated by the number 3. So grab a calculator, abacus, your fingers or toes…whatever, and prepare to be awestruck!

David began his career with Richmond in 1974 wearing the number 33 on his back, the same number he took with him to Collingwood some ten years later. When he returned to Richmond he wore number 16.

Clokes career spanned through 3 decades…70’s 80’s and 90’s, and also he played in 3 Grand Finals.

Cloke kicked 333 career goals, and in his final 3 games, he polled 3 Brownlow Medal votes in each match!

Cloke was also a member of the 300 game club….his 300th a memorable affair with a surprise Richmond victory over Carlton!

Dale Weightman and Big Clokey celebrate the power of 3!

He played for 18 seasons and was 36 when he retired, both numbers divisible by 3!

Famously, Cloke had 3 sons that played/play league football, each drafted under the father-son rule to Collingwood. They neatly wore or still wear the 3 numbers, 32 (Travis) 33 (Cameron) and 34 (Jason) that surrounded their own fathers number 33.

Now we get a bit nutty!

David Cloke gave away 33 free kicks in his first year (1974) and also in 1985. Son Jason gave away a career total of 33 free kicks in away matches only, while middle brother Cameron received a career total of 33 free kicks in home matches. Youngest son Travis is yet to join the 33 party, although as a left-footer amongst righties, he clearly doesn’t follow the status quo!

Some other 3’s that cropped up…David Cloke played 33 games against Fitzroy, something his sons will clearly never achieve.

Cloke also played just 3 games at Cararra, now Metricon Stadium.

Cloke senior kicked 3 goals in his last game for Richmond (1982 Grand Final) before moving to Collingwood, where in his first match he again booted 3 goals.

And finally, David Cloke’s final game for the Pies in 1989 saw him have 12 kicks, 6 marks, 6 handballs, for 18 disposals…and 9 hit outs. All stats are divisible by 3!

Interestingly, but not related to the number 3, David Cloke played in the 1990 Richmond v’s Carlton ‘Save our Skins’ legends match out at Windy Hill, only to come out of retirement and play on again in 1991!

Today’s post was brought to you by the number 3.

With a little help from my friends…

http://cloked3d.webs.com/clokemedallion.htm)

http://stats.rleague.com/afl/stats/players/D/David_Cloke.html

Nice Statistic #2 That’s a bit average!

The season 2010 saw a remarkable statistic crop up in Richmond’s attendance figures which, to this point, is yet to be publicly recognised. After round 3, Richmond’s attendances were as follows……giving the Tiges an average attendance figure of 42,594. Then the unthinkable happened. Richmond’s round 4 fixture against Melbourne at the MCG saw exactly 42,594 people attend, meaning that Richmond’s exact average crowd to that point in the season came through the gates. Now I would have been amazed had the figures been close, but to be spot on left me dumbfounded. I keep a season spreadsheet full of all sorts of bits and pieces, and I had to enter the data several times before I realised what was happening! Now that’s what I call a “nice statistic!”

Nice Statistic #1 – Even-Stevens at Essendon

Essendon ended the 2011 home and away season on exactly the same points for as points against, 2,217, giving them a percentage of exactly 100! And what is the magic formula that the AFL and most leagues use to determine “percentage?” It’s simply the points FOR divided by the points AGAINST, then multiplied by 100!

eg. Richmond Points for 112 Points against 84

112 / 84 = 1.333 1.333 x 100 = 133.33 %

Interestingly, the SANFL uses a different percentage system, where 100% is the pinnacle. The formula?

100 x For / (For + Against)

eg. Glenelg (keep it in the Tiger family) FOR-112 AGAINST 84

100 x 112 / (196) =57.14%

I personally like this system because if the aggregate score between the two teams is 196, then Glenelg’s score of 112 represents 57.14% of the total score. Click here for some further reading on www.sanfl.info