Nice Statistic #9 The beauty of a rounded figure

Here’s a nice and even statistic to keep you going in the off-season, though not being quite the ‘blow your socks off affair’ of this little nugget! For round 21 of the 2012 AFL season, the 5 matches played in Victoria had the following crowd totals.

38,179  –  59,381  –  44,956  –  19,396  –  23,098

This gave us the beautifully round total of 185,000 on the dot, with an average crowd of 37,000 precisely! This is as rounded-off, neat and even as the Subiaco crowd figures which have been historically either a) guessed b) rounded to the nearest thousand or c) the actual number of people in attendance! I’ve always felt the answer lies somewhere between points a) and b). If you don’t know what I’m talking about, ask me. I’ll find some evidence!

Even Stevens to you all!

Nice Statistic – Hawthorn’s Premiership Gold

History. Records. Come Saturday afternoon at the MCG, the players won’t be giving these two words a thought in the world and rightly so. It is the now that they must live in. But alas, I am not playing in the AFL Grand Final, and therefore wish to delve into the past.

Should Hawthorn win the 2012 premiership, they will break a long held, little know record. It has been well documented that Hawthorn has won at least one premiership in every decade since the 1960’s, which equals Melbourne’s record of 5 straight decades with at least one premiership (1920’s-1960’s.) Should Hawthorn overcome the Bloods on Saturday, they will become the first VFL/AFL team to claim premierships in six consecutive decades, a truly remarkable feat of sustained success.


To illustrate, the three most successful clubs, Essendon, Carlton and Collingwood, have at best managed just four consecutive premiership yielding decades, giving an idea of just how successful the Hawthorn Football Club has become since John Kennedy took a hold of them and since they changed from Mustard Pots and Mayblooms into predatorial Hawks.

What makes it all the more astonishing is the meagre beginnings of the club. Formed in 1902, the club unsuccessfully progressed through the Metropolitan league, the VFA and into the VFL, all with a bare trophy cabinet. Once in the VFL, they spent the 1920’s-1950’s as a cellar dweller, and along with the other 1925 inclusions to the league, Footscray and North Melbourne, didn’t look like winning a premiership.

Footscray was the first of this trio to break through for a flag in 1954. But just seven years later in 1961, as both Hawthorn and Footscray met on the big day, it was the ‘underdog’ Hawthorn who were the sentimental favourites, winning their first flag and beginning an astonishing run of success.

But they come up against a formidable foe in Sydney, also once the easybeats of the league. In fact the Swans (continuation of the South Melbourne into the Sydney Football Club) have undergone a transformation not unlike Hawthorn’s in the 1960’s. After six fruitless decades, surpassed only by St.Kilda’s 1890’s-1950’s drought, the Swans shed their easybeat image, internally rebranding themselves as the Bloods, leading to premiership success in 2005.

She’ll be a grand old game come Saturday.

Thanks as always to http://www.footyjumpers.com/ for the Hawthorn logo images!

Happy Snap #17 Dockers First Hurrah!

I just quickly want to post this picture from the family photo album as there are a few interesting little aspects to it. Firstly, this is just seconds before the Fremantle Football Club commenced playing in the Australian Football League, round 1, 1995. The time is 2:10…traditionally when matches used to begin! It’s anyone’s guess these days! We were there because Richmond were again used as the guinea pigs to welcome a new Western Australian club into the big time.

But thanks to my dad, we have some idea as to the Dockers mindset in relation to their powerful big brothers, West Coast, who had won two of the past three premierships. This little home-made sign hanging over the fence simply says…

“Eagles don’t look after members…Freo Dockers!”

A disgruntled Eagles fan perhaps? Sick of success? Or perhaps sick of being on a ten year waiting list to get a seat at a home match? Either way, this Freo fan or fans have failed miserably in one aspect…you can’t read yellow texta from a distance!

Richmond nervously held on for a 5 point win, with little indication that it would be the first of 7 successive victories. As a side, this is the old Western or Ponsford stand at the MCG, and the photo is dated by the ‘Telecom’ (not Telstra) and “Brian Nailor-Ray Martin…Who’s who of news” advertisements!

PS.Thanks to mum for her happy-snappery!

Happy Snap #15 Great Southern Stand

So here we have the Great Southern Stand, obviously under construction. The year is 1991, and things have changed dramatically at the ‘G from a year earlier. I can’t remember if this was the game against Sydney or St.Kilda as we sat in the same spot for both, but the focus here is clearly on the enormity of the impending structure, now looked down upon by the Ponsford, Olympic and MCC stands. And when looking at the ‘G in this 1991 state, I automatically think of the enigmatic Allan Jakovich.

And of course, who could forget Brett ‘Fruity’ Allison’s 1991 mark of the year as he stood atop Gavin Crosisca…and then kept going up! All in front of the new stand being built. Thanks for bringing this to my attention Jeff Dowsing!

Let the Season Begin

I’ve heard many words used in the past two days to describe the excitement people feel for the impending football season, the most popular being that people are ‘pumped.’ While I too am ‘pumped-up’ for football to resume in Melbourne town this evening, I decided to I consult Garrie Hutchinson’s book ‘From the Outer’ and see if there were other words we could use to describe our enthusiasm. The following are not words from Garrie’s pen, yet he used them as a starting point for his book.

“The mellow glow of autumn is yet upon the scene, but lengthening shadows and fast deepening tints betoken winter’s near approach while the oval’s heavy thud is heard on many a grassy turf as leather once again rebounds from kindred hide, and the football season of this year of grace gives forth its stirring notes of warning.”

Peter Pindar, The Australiasion, 22 April, 1882.

Let the leathern sphere be ‘struck by foot’ in anger!

Happy Snap #6

Ok….so I’ve strayed slightly from football, but seeing as the Boxing Day test is currently playing out down at the MCG, and what with my love of grandstands and stadia, this photo seemed apt.

Yes, straight from 1994, it’s mine and my brothers Test Match game on steroids, with much thanks to our extensive collection of lego. Note the Richmond fan standing on the grassed area, and the red & green 3rd umpire lights adoring the ‘main stand’, as was the style at the time.

Click on the below thumbnails and see the oddly placed cameramen (a la Waverley Park cameras in the pocket) and the apparent car accident  in the car park!

Most of the grandstands have survived and are sitting around somewhere at mum and dads, but the test match game has long since disintegrated.

Thanks to mum for the pics!