Micro Noises 19
2013 meets 2012 meets 2011 meets 2010 meets 2009 meets 2008 meets 2007
Thanks to the AFL's drip-feed policy, we know who's playing who in the opening round of 2013. And despite the seemingly endless number of genuine "fixtures" in the fixture, the AFL have managed to come up with an opening round where just two of the games have the same sides meeting as they did in Round 1, 2012. Richmond and Carlton meet for the seventh consecutive time in an opening round, while the two Sydneys, the Swans and their Greater Western counterparts, will meet in Round 1 for the second time in a row.
We're not big fans of the same sides meeting in the same round each year but we can certainly understand why Carlton and Richmond would be happy to maintain the Round 1 status quo - the Blues because they have a 5-1 opening-round record against Richmond since 2007, and the Tigers because the last time they met anyone but Carlton in Round 1, they lost by 115 points! (That match was against the Bulldogs in 2006.)
Round 1 - what history says about the other matches
Hawthorn and Geelong meet in the opening round next year for the first time since 2009. The Cats, having been upset by the Hawks in the 2008 Grand Final, gained some small vengeance by coming out on top that day. And the Hawks have not beaten them since.
For North Melbourne, Collingwood, Adelaide and Essendon, next year's opener will be 2007 revisited. In that year's first round, North 10.19 (79) fell just short of Collingwood's 12.10 (82) and Adelaide lost at home to Essendon, 10.14 (74) to 16.9 (105).
West Coast and Fremantle will stage the first Round 1 Derby since 2002. The Eagles came up trumps all those years ago, winning 21.11 (137) to the Dockers' 18.10 (118).
For the last meeting of the Brisbane Lions and the Western Bulldogs in the opening round, we must go all the way back to 1998 when the Dogs 17.16 (118) easily accounted for Brisbane, 10.12 (72).
So, based on their last Round 1 encounters in the above seven games, the winners in the first round of 2013 will be Sydney, Carlton, Geelong, Collingwood, Essendon, West Coast and the Western Bulldogs.
Interestingly, in all of the cases were the teams above last met in Round 1, the home team ended up as the losers. If we are to use that as a guide, we can expect the Round 1 winners in 2013 to be Sydney, Richmond, Geelong, Collingwood, Essendon, West Coast and Brisbane.
And what about the Suns, Saints, Demons and Power?
Well, Gold Coast and St Kilda have never met in Round 1 and neither have Melbourne and Port Adelaide, so for those games, your guess is as good (or bad) as ours.
2012 saw 123 players make their AFL debuts. No less than 39 of them had surnames never before seen at the game's top level, with 11 of those debuting for GWS. Here the 2012 "first-timer" list:
Sydney and North Melbourne were the only teams not to have "debutant surnames" in 2012. And in good news for Collingwood's Dayne Beams, he no longer has to feel as lonely as he might have in the past. The debut of Dayne Zorko means that Beams is no longer the only Dayne to have played AFL footy.
Postcode of the week
In late-breaking trade news, St Kilda has picked up Tom Hickey from the Gold Coast Suns. The Saints will give up picks 13, 37 and 57 for Hickey and picks 26 and 47. In making the deal, St Kilda were probably attracted by the fact that having the 201cm Hickey on board (as a back-up to Ben McEvoy) will allow Rhys Stanley to spend less time in the ruck and more time up forward. Gaining pick 37 for pick 47 as part of this arrangement represents that fact beautifully, as 3747 is the postcode of Stanley.
Ridiculous footy anagram of the week
While the Hickey trade looks to be a smart move by St Kilda, we're not sure how smart Tom himself is. Nevertheless, we reckon he must be no dummy, given that SAINT TOM HICKEY is an anagram of YES, I AM NOT THICK.