Friday, September 9, 2011

North Melbourne Kangaroos - Round 24 Review - Season Finale

Unfortunately this was going to be the season finale before the game had started. The Roos blew any chance of playing into September with yet another disappointing loss the week before against the Saints.

Round 24 v Richmond Tigers @Etihad Stadium

Richmond Tigers 3.2 9.7 10.10 13.13 91
North Melbourne Kangaroos 5.3 7.7 12.11 15.14 104

The Kangaroos blew a good chance at getting their first win in Round 5 against the Tigers but capitulated in the last quarter and fell to a 0-4 record. Losses like this were the story of the Roos year and I'm sure plenty of the boys in Royal Blue saw this as a chance for redemption regardless of the ladder positions.

The Tigers, Kangaroos and Demons were seen as similar team at the start of the season in the sense they were coming out of a rebuilding phase with a core group of quality young players. A win for the Tigers would also have seen bragging rights go to the Yellow and Black on the ladder and a 9th placed finish.

A strong start to the Roos saw a 2 goal lead however they again gave the opposition a sniff with a patented burst of goals in a short period in the 2nd quarter. Instead it was the Tigers who were in the lead by 2 goals at half-time.

Whatever it was that Brad Scott said in the dressing rooms it needs to be said again next year. The spirit and hunger for the ball was evident fro the first hitout and it showed on the scoreboard with a 5 goal to 1 quarter. There were also several chances for the Ross for exted the lead including 4 points for the quarter.

The Roos did enough in the last quarter to finish of this season horribilis with a win by 13 points.

Drew Petrie continued his fine form in front of goal with 4 and yet another contender for mark of the year in the goal square with 2 minutes to go. For a guy who had 3 separate broken foot injuries the previous year, to kick 48 goals is a fantastic achievement. However I would say his conversion wasn't as tight as it could have been kicking 41 behinds meaning Petrie really should have kicked 50+ even close to 60 wouldn't have been out of the question.

Boomer Harvey seemed to run around the paddock without the burden of the captaincy or result on his way to an evergreen 31 possies, 8 marks, 2 goals with 4 goal contributed and 7 inside 50's. With Andrew Swallo steppin up his output this season, a changeover for him into the top leader role seems perfect. Boomer hasn't lost any pace or hunger so barring a debilitating soft tissue injury could easily play on for 2-3 more seasons and just enjoy his footy.

Brady Rawlings honourably retired earlier and finished his career on a high note both for the season and his last game. He was again pivotal throughout the year and collected plenty of possessions including 27 in his last year.

Todd Goldstein registered 29 hitouts finishing the season in 2nd overall for the all-time hit outs in a season list. It's no surprise he has been selected in the All-Australian squad of 40 along with teammates, Daniel Wells, Andrew Swallow and Drew Petrie. Considering top 8 Essendon didn't have a single player selected this is quite a tale of how well the Roos played despite their win-loss record.

Lindsay Thomas also played arguably his best all-round game for the season with 20 possies, 5 marks, 2 goals 2, 8 tackles and an impressive 11 inside 50's.

Although he Roos failed to make a real impact when playing top 8 teams despite several close losses, they will take some pride in the finish to year win.

As they say int he biz, there is always next year!

Until then hail to the 4 squad!

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