After the Game V Adelaide Rd 3, 2024 – With Snaps Truly

With convict DNA and a heathen’s heart, you might be expecting ribald and irreverent “footy as religion” references to be sprinkled through this Good Friday match report.

And it’s tempting of course. Why not weave affirming themes of rebirth, a deep sense of hope and the frankly uncanny resemblance between James Aish and that other superstar?

And sure, if you were sitting near me at Optus today you might indeed have heard me shout “He has risen” every time Luke Jackson leapt skyward; but beyond that, I promised I would leave it to others to describe our third win in a row as proof of our resurrection.

If indeed it happened.

On safer ground perhaps, to simply hope Freo would make this a very Happy Easter by parking the Crows on their collective buns and making them very hot and cross in the process.

Something is stirring in the loins of Freo fans. You can feel it. They’ll show it to you if you ask them. It’s a growing sense of belief. And more than 51 thousand turned up for the match – a record home game crowd outside of a Derby.

And what they got was …

Well, it was very ugly. An arm wrestle. A really ugly, grind it out, arm wrestle. And Justin Longmuir wanted it just that way.

The Crows put the first goal on the board before Freo responded by going end to end – Ryan, Fyfe, Young to Amiss to Walters.

Sonny was doing a power of work and when Matt Taberner goaled from a free kick, it dawned on me that, incredibly at age 30 and after 122 games, he may still be a work in progress.

Down by three at the quarter Freo was in the game, primarily thanks to a back six that played brilliantly all night.

Alex Pearce, now he’s not worried that his legs will snap like matchsticks, looked supremely confident, as did the General Luke Ryan. Jordan Clarke played with great creativity and dash and Josh Draper is wearing more than Michael Johnson’s number, he may well be his heir.

And they won most of the hard contests and brought the ball forward again and again.

Hayden Young was laying big tackles and sending the ball into our forward 50 but we lacked care and composure. Michael Walters finally gave us the lead and the opportunity starved Jye Amiss managed to scramble another off the ground. We went to the half leading by eight points.

The third quarter, offered more of the same. It was hard and it was grim.

Adelaide scored first, but an Amiss goal was enough to extend the margin to ten at the final change. We should have been further in front. We were doing everything right, but it wasn’t reflected on the scoreboard.

Who do you think provided a moment of supreme clarity when it mattered most in the last?

How about Bailey “remember that name” Banfield. He sliced his way into space and coolly slotted the first goal of the quarter. He grabbed the moment.

I wouldn’t say the floodgates opened, but finally there was some reward for effort. Cyclone Treacy followed with a monster from 50 and then Tabs extended the lead to 27 points before Freddy goaled to put the game beyond doubt.

At the siren, Freo had earned a low scoring, percentage boost – 35 point winners over a fellow finals aspirant, strangely stuck in the mud, having slipped to zero and three.

Up next; an eight-day break before Freo head to Adelaide for a Gather Round encounter with Carlton and then Port the following weekend.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

At 7.02 on this Friday evening my wife passed me her phone. Unbeaten in three games, Freo were sitting second only to GWS on the AFL ladder.

An Easter Miracle?

That’s for others to decide.

By our multi-talented and amazingly insightful footy scribe, SNAPS TRULY. Snaps has seen and done it all. He may or may not have been a fringe player at Fremantle. Don’t miss Snaps’ report after each Freo Dockers match here on the Shipping News throughout the 2024 season.


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