Defeating the Tiger King

Hi everyone

Most of you know me by “Mrs Blogs” the awesome person behind Mr Blogs – the creator and founder of The Swans Blog. At his persistence, I’ve decided to write an article about the swans this year and what a week to pick!

The last time I was at a footy match was February 2020 – watching the bushfire relief match, cringing at the sight of Tom Papley wearing the navy blue, and kicking four goals. I was hopeful that the swans would bounce back in 2020, as long as Franklin remained injury-free… well, hindsight’s a wonderful thing. At least Papley committed to Sydney.

First off wow what a start to the season – after a lackluster 2020 – footy is well and truly back. I must admit I didn’t hold up much hope for us in Round 1. I was hoping we would put up a fight and then eventually be overrun by a stronger hungrier Lions team. I even scheduled dinner plans… whoops.

Imagine my surprise to see the scores midway through the second quarter. Luckily the restaurant closed at 9.30pm and Mr Blogs and I was able to dash home and see the end of the match. Watching the replay the following day was awesome – especially seeing watching Logan McDonald, Braeden Campbell and Errol Gulden play like they have been playing at least 50 games in the seniors.

Round 2 was another excellent win – although we were concerned about those last quarter fadeouts and the 6 holding the balls in the defensive 50. Onwards to Round 3, against the reigning premiers on the MCG, a venue both Mr Blogs and I hadn’t been to since July 2019.

The media built this up as Dusty v Franklin – the battle of the superstars. Now granted I haven’t been on the dusty bandwagon – I kind of found him annoying. But during 2020 when football was the only thing to get you through the Melbourne lockdown – I watched a lot of Richmond games.

The fact is – he’s an amazing player – 3 Norm Smith Medals is no easy feat. Granted I was very drunk watching the 2020 Grand Final, the second half was a blur and I missed him kicking all those goals. Then after extensive googling – I found that he would have been drafted to the Swans if he’d lived in Sydney a little longer… imagine If that occurred? Eddie would have had a heart attack! There’s talk of him coming to Sydney after his contract finishes at Richmond – one can only hope so and the tatts are kind of attractive (sorry Mr Blogs)

Unfortunately, this battle became a bit absent after Franklin was ruled out. I was all for this – he’s been out of the game for at least two years. Why risk him in round 3 – when he has only played a half of a game? Have him match fit in the deeper half of the year – when we possibly make finals.

I didn’t think Sydney would beat Richmond – they are a powerhouse – 3 premierships in four years is very rare these days. They remind me of the Swans in 2012, 2014, 2016, and 2017. Bar one horrible set of umpiring and a 0 – 6 start in 2017, we could have easily been them. I was happy if we matched them to at least 3 quarter-time and then assumed they would kick away in the final quarter.

As a massive Disney fan – the Swans are little Simba, and Richmond was Uncle Scar (the big bad uncle) who rules over Pride Rock (the AFL). Although they had won the previous two games – Richmond appeared to be going through the motions – they looked like they hadn’t hit their ‘full speed yet’.

So on a nice and hot 30-degree day, Mr Blogs and I sat in Row C watching the game. Special mention goes to the six guys behind us (all Swans’ fans) for their joyous commentary throughout the game. That’s what makes footy exciting – the banter between fans and high-fiving random swans supporters when your team is winning.

I was so shocked that we were in front at quarter time – the Swans had come out to play!

Although looking at how many set shots we had – I was worried it would come back to bite us in the end. Piling on more goals in the second (what a legend “THE CHAD’s” goal was) our lead of 22 points escalated to 40 in a matter of 3 minutes - I was happy with a half-time lead of 22 points!

At half-time, Mr blogs and I were drinking ciders mulling over the scoreline which neither of us predicted. I went on a rampage sending messages to all my footy mad friends going "can you believe the score!!"

Part of me was thinking at some point Richmond was going to come back hard – Dusty would rack up 38 possessions and they would kick the next 10 goals. George Hewett and the rest of the midfield group, did a fantastic job on him – nullifying his brilliance and limiting him to only 20 disposals and no goals. Ken Hinkley is currently now persuading John Longmire to go out for a steak dinner and picking his brain on how he stopped Dusty.

But the fightback never came. It went goal for goal in the third quarter until Isaac Heeney kicked a ripper from the boundary, and then the Swans was up by 57 points. Richmond kicked a few in a row in the final term but they never looked damaging, and their fans left 10 minutes prior to the final siren – so we were all surrounded by red and white.

What a game! The Cygnets rose up! We all know what happened at the end of the Lion King - Simba defeated Uncle Scar. While it’s only Round 3 and a very long season is still to come, I’m enjoying watching the resurgence of the new look Swans. A plus side is actually listening to the AFL shows actually talk about them for a change.

Mr Blogs and I are off to the GWS game – fingers crossed the swans continue their merry run!

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