What was great was that the banner for this week’s match celebrated not only the Big Kruuuzz’s 150th match, but also that we were playing against a side that was orchestrated by a man we now have, Stephen Silvagni, SOS.
What was great was that before the game on Sunday afternoon at Etihad Stadium, this same great man, SOS walked past the Cheer Squad’s table selling raffle tickets to win the Big Man’s signed Guernsey. When we asked him to enter, he and the person he was with, donated money to the Cheer Squad with a smile and a “Go Blues”.
What was great was that from the very start of the match Carlton never gave up. That even though we were down one major factor in our backline, Alex Silvagni, others stood up. Plowman, Docherty (everywhere), Marchbank, Weitering, Crippa, Simmo, Murph, Gybsy, Curnows (both of them), the dynamism of the Big Kruuuzz... the list goes on on...
What was great was that Liam Jones! Just Liam Jones. Having moved from the forward down to the backline was an amazing insight into the possibilities of what a player struggling in one position, could achieve in another. He was there in every single contest. Kept Patton to one goal while he was tagging him and who overall only had 10 possessions, compared to Jones’s 14, Patton’s 3 marks compared to Jones’s 8. He solidified his position at every possible moment and ensured a renewed found love from the supporters.
What was great was that despite some really illogical umpire calls from both sides of the game, the Blues never gave up. That even though there were some silly errors, that we had less possessions (229 to 266), that the stoppage clearances were 14, compared to 28 and that our tackles inside forward were only 7, compared to 21 it was the intercept possessions that kept the Blues in the game. When it mattered, when it seemed as if the Giants were edging to score, we stopped them. With one rotation down, players stood up and who cannot watch the last two minutes of the match without shedding a little tear of sheer and utter joy.
What was great was that despite those in the know believing that we would get a shellacking, we were in the contest at every single minute. Despite those now saying that the Giants team were depleted because of injury need to look to last week when that team, still depleted by injury, beat Essendon.
What was great was that on SEN the commentators said that Carlton are becoming a “champion team” and that a team filled with champions such as the Giants are deemed to be, will not succeed in the finals. That while they may be individually a champion player they lack the one thing that Carlton have – the need to play not only for the Navy Blue, but for each other.
What was great was that a caller on SEN summed up what everyone who went to every game week in and week out, win, lose or draw, rain, hail or shine and never once gave up on the club, felt at the final siren.
But, what was great, was that I saw not just a few standing up cheering, booing, yelling at the umpires, but the entire ground that was filled with Blues supporters. That at the end of every quarter, they all stood up and cheered and clapped. That when the umpires made a ridiculous call, no matter if it was correct or not, everyone stood up and yelled. That when, down to the find two minutes of the match, they all stood up and cheered the team on to not give up.
What was great, was that win. For this week we saw a club really unite and to show glimpses of what it will be in the future. If you don’t believe me, watch the last two minutes of the game and as the commentator says, “The siren sounds, it doesn’t get any better than that!”