After the Game v Euro-Yroke, Rd 10 2024 – With Snaps Truly

In last week’s column I ended on a solemn note, declaring …
“No game matters more than the life that surrounds it.”

And as Cam McCarthy’s friends paid further tribute to this free spirit, the enormity of his passing and the impact it will continue to have, became ever clearer.

I saw Freo skipper Alex Pearce sitting alone in a café a couple of days on. He cut a forlorn figure. Ear buds in, head low over his coffee. No-one bothered him, but those present probably wished they could put a hand on his shoulder and say something that mattered. Maybe, “This too shall pass.”

And as I’ve reflected on that chaotic Friday night defeat to Sydney, I wish I’d realised earlier how little it really mattered and how remarkable it was that Justin Longmuir even managed to get his team out on the park.

But eight days on and so too, the circus rolls on.

Are Freo fans right to assume the players have dealt with their grief? Can we clap our hands in anticipation and say, “Right, time to get back to business?”

I’m not so sure.

So tonight, as we mark Sir Doug Nicholls Round – its Walyalup against Euro-Yroke at Marvel.

I have hope, but not much expectation. The hope is to see a smile on some faces and some shared moments of satisfaction. The hope is that there is relief and refuge in just going out and playing the game they love.

But it’s a grim start. Four minutes in, and Freddy crashes to the turf after a bump from Jimmy Webster. There is no malice, but he is hurt and will be subbed out of the game.
St Kilda starts brightly with two goals, before Matt Johnson produces a nice kick on the angle. No smile, but the fist pump is encouraging.

Walyalup begins to find its feet and moments later Young delivers to Sharp who goals and gives us the lead. The kid likes to celebrate and we like to see it too. His grin is broad.
Patrick Voss has presented well early and he goals to make it three on the run. A nice finish to the quarter. Walyalup lead by seven.

In the second, Euro-Yroke gets on the scoreboard first and it both pains and delights to know it’s a Liam Henry goal that gives them the advantage.

Jye Amiss is seeing plenty of it, but his slow walk-in approach on goal seems almost too laconic and he sprays two good opportunities.

He likes it better snapping on his left and we again hit the front.

The home side is up for this contest, their season is on the line and they go ahead again. Only a mark and goal from Remember The Name Banfield seconds before the half time break, puts us three points clear.

Its close. And there are no signs of it being fun.

Cominiti kicks back-to-back goals in the third, as Euro-Yroke hit the front and then extend the lead. Amiss takes a tumbling mark and this time – it is possible he read a quick draft of this script – his long range shot on goal is magnificent.

Walyalup has most of the footy in the third quarter but it’s painful to see some many opportunities go begging. We kick 1.5 for the term to 2.2 and the scores are level at the final change.

We can’t seem to put this one to bed.

Michael Walters tries a barrel and misses.

Luke Ryan hits the post.

Jaegar O’Meara runs into an open goal and misses.

Jeremy Sharp does brilliantly and at last it seems the drought is broken. The ball is then returned to the middle and on review, a defender is deemed to have touched it.

But perhaps it was all part of the plan. Josh Treacy goals from the kick in and at last we can breathe a little easier.

Probably an exaggeration to say the floodgates open, but it is O’Meara who puts the game beyond doubt with his first goal of the season.

And then his second.

Remember The Name has another crack on the siren, but you won’t be that surprised to know he missed.

But Walyalup wins a tight and ugly one by 17 points.

There are handshakes. There are hugs. There is relief.

But there is not much joy on display.

Footy must seem like a hard bloody slog right now.

Home to Collingwood next week. PBut let’s not speculate. Let’s pause and give the boys a bit of time.

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. Here are Snaps’ other 2024 season reports.


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