GEELONG'S GRAND GAME
The match between Geelong and Fitzroy attracted a large crowd to the Fitzroy ground, where a brilliant display was given by either team. Geelong were enabled, after repeated failures on metropolitan grounds, to reproduce the form that characterises them when playing on Corio Oval, and after the first few minutes, they settled down, and played wonderfully concerted game. Fitzroy were satisfied at the conclusion that the better team won, and congratulations were extended to Geelong for their splendid performance, and also for the manly way in which they played. Fitzroy's three previous successive defeats were entirely due to the failure of then forward line, and Saturday's defeat may be said to be the only occasion on which they were beaten on their merits.
Wickham umpired erratically, and the best that can be said of his attempt was that he was impartial. But both teams rose superior to the arbiter, and despite the handicap which bad decisions have on a game, they played in a friendly spirit, and so allowed him fewer opportunities to exasperate them.
Geelong played Dalton and Allan in the places a Marsham and Healey; and Fitzroy's changes were Jones and Abbot for Heron and Toohey (injured). A doubtful starter was Johnson, who had not recovered from a severe attack of influenza, but at the last moment he played—and with such effect that rarely has he given such an exposition of sound defence work. Indeed, he was the thorn in the side of Geelong's forwards all day, and but for his sterling work, Fitzroy must have been beaten with ease. Several men were injured during the course of the game, mention of which is made elsewhere.
Fitzroy began brilliantly, and after three goals had been scored in a few minutes by Jones, Freake, and Lethbridge, it was thought that a runaway game had commenced. Geelong, however, began to "feel their feet," and after great battling on the wing, play was forced to Fitzroy's posts, and a free-kick to Heinz brought their first goal. Dalton brought it forward again and Martini hit the post. Johnson, Bamford, Cooper, and Lenne were marking and kicking finely in defence. Great struggling followed around the goal, but when the battle was at its height, and opportunities presented themselves to Geelong to score, or Fitzroy to clear their goal, the effect was spoilt by the incessant bouncing of the ball by the umpire. Fitzroy came with a rattle, but Bill Eason saved between the posts, and Scown raced away around the wing. Johnson marked in the crush, but later it came back again, and Greig punched the ball to Bill Eason, who came with a rush and scored. Several behinds to Geelong followed before Fitzroy rallied. Cooper began the rush, and McLennan forced it up the centre, but Alec Eason relieved brilliantly, and Fitzroy were defending again. A fine exchange between Armstrong and Orchard enabled Baker to come through and score. Each side had opened out, and play was transferred from end to end with great speed. A fine chain of marks between Copper, Millen, and Shaw gave Lethbridge a mark a long way out just as the bell rang, but the distinct was too far, and the quarter finished with the scores:—Geelong, 3 goals 4 behinds, to 3 goals 2 behinds.
The second quarter was brilliantly contested, and very even. Each side got three goals, but the speed with which the game was played filled everyone with amazement. All the characteristics which go to make up a perfect game were given in profusion, and the cheers which greeted the "tit-bits" were evidence of the appreciation of the crowd for both teams' work. Fitzroy tried to break away quickly, but Armstrong turned them, and McCarter streaked from the park and passed to Baker. James took the mark in front, and with a nice kick scored. Fairbairn and Brownlees got it down again, and Allan snapped another goal another heavy charge was turned by Bamford and Millen, backing him up, made a fine run around the wing, and passed to Shaw, who scored. McLennan, Jones, and Wilson brought it up again, but a great rally by Bill Eason, who saved between the posts, Alec Eason, who marked near the centre and Allan, who raced around the wing, was an exhilarating bit of play that got them a behind, kicked by Baker. Fitzroy carried the ball from end to end without a Geelong man touching it, but only a point crowned their effort. Geelong were coming along finely, and but for the stubborn game by Johnson, Cooper, and Lenne, Fitzroy would have been overrun. Fitzroy, however, with one of their periodical rushes, and Jones, who clearly marked the ball right in front, had the chance denied him through the umpire taking the ball and bouncing it, and a storm of hoots followed. Jones, however, helped in the next goal by a timely pass forward, where Freake got a free-kick, and scored. Another series of marks by Johnson, Bamford, Jones, and Parratt enabled Freake to dash in just before the bell rang, and score Fitzroy's sixth goal. At half time, the scores were:—Geelong, 6 goals 5 behinds; Fitzroy, 6 goals 4 behinds.
The score was kept down in the third quarter, each side adding one goal. Norris got Fitzroy's goal quickly, and then neither side could gain much advantage for a long period, as the backs were stronger than the forwards. Concerted work was rarely absent, however, and those who were conspicuous were Johnson, Cooper, Lambert, Millen, Norris, Lethbridge, and Shaw for Fitzroy; while Bill Eason. Alec Eason, Scown, Slater, Armstrong, Baker, McCarter, and Dalton were ever in the thick of the fight for Geelong. Martini had a shot close in after Slater, Johns, and Gray had brought it down, but had failed miserably, and kicked out. Baker got a behind, and another rush by Geelong left Bamford no alternative but to kick it through his own goal, as he was cornered. Scown showed a great turn of speed on the wing, as he charged down and passed to Dalton, from whom Martini marked brilliantly. He gave Geelong the lead again by placing and scoring. Abbott and Lethbridge brought it up for Fitzroy, and Freake marked in front, but to the consternation of everyone the umpire disallowed it, making the second occasion, and in similar circumstances, in which he had penalised Fitzroy in front of goal. Later Freake got a free kick, but hit the post. Geelong led at three-quarter time, the scores being 7 goals 9 behinds to Fitzroy's 7 goals 5 behinds.
Geelong led by four points at the final change, and as Fitzroy made the pace a cracker, a great finish was expected. Geelong, however, played coolly, and kept their places, and soon they were hammering at the goal. Lenne and Johnson were in great form in defence, and a wonderful rally, in which Cooper, Lambert, and Parratt figured, brought the ball the length of the ground. Scown, at the right moment, however, relieved, and a great sprint down the centre enabled Dalton to mark and pass to Heinz, who snapped a goal. Alec Eason, Dalton, and Heinz came down again, but were checked when in front by a free-kick to Shaw. Fine handball by Allan enabled Johns to mark. He tried long shot, and scored grandly. Geelong were going great guns to the accompaniment of salvos of cheers by their delighted supporters. Eason, Armstrong, Dalton, Heinz, and Johns was another grand burst, which carried the ball well up. A free kick to Jones brought it back and deafening cheers came from Fitzroy's supporters as Millen swung round the wing. Counter-cheers, however, greeted the play of Brownlees and Gray as they relieved and shot forward, where Heinz marked, but hit the post. It was a game of alternating rallies. Scown was at his best in the last 10 minutes in leading up to goal, and his pass was brilliantly taken by Martini, who, from a long shot, scored. In a collision with Fairbairn, Millen was injured, and he was greatly missed along the wing, where he had put up a wonderful game all day. Fitzroy were not shirking, and Lenne, who had changed with Jones, and had come forward, scored. It was the last spark and Geelong, playing at their top, swept forward and Orchard got another goal before the bell rang. The final scores were:—
GEELONG, 11 goals 13 behinds (79 points);
FITZROY, 8 goals 5 behinds (53 points).
Geelong played a fine, concerted game, the best of a good lot, perhaps, being Bill Eason, Scown, Baker, Allen, Armstrong, Fairbairn, Dalton, Heinz, Richard, James, Johns, Greig, Gray, and McCarter. Johnson stood out above everybody for Fitzroy, other to support him being Millen and Jones (until injured), Norris, Lethbridge, Shaw, Holden, McLennan, Freake, Cooper, Bamford, Lenne, Harrison, and Wilson.
Title: Fitzroy beaten again. Geelong's grand game.
Publisher: The Argus (Melbourne, Vic: 1848 - 1957)
Date: Monday, 27 July 1914, p.6
Thanks to Stephen Wade for helping to prepare this report.
|31||Abbott, Paddy||0||25y 173d||14||0|
|3||Bamford, Fred||0||27y 106d||64||1|
|5||Cooper, Jack||0||25y 154d||115||6|
|9||Freake, Jim||3||25y 179d||54||152|
|18||Harrison, Artie||0||21y 167d||17||2|
|30||Holden, George||0||25y 101d||103||26|
|14||Johnson, Wally||0||26y 327d||139||82|
|21||Jones, Arthur||0||22y 286d||4||0|
|15||Lambert, George||0||26y 319d||79||4|
|11||Lenne, Bert||1||24y 357d||81||7|
|12||Lethbridge, Chris||0||24y 62d||28||6|
|4||Martin, Jim||0||29y 339d||125||88|
|19||McLennan, Harold||0||25y 364d||107||16|
|29||Millen, Roy||0||20y 286d||16||3|
|22||Norris, Charlie||2||33y 2d||73||15|
|20||Parratt, Percy||1||27y 148d||96||73|
|17||Shaw, George||1||28y 115d||62||26|
|28||Wilson, Billy||0||22y 246d||8||3|
|22||Allen, Harry||1||24y 65d||7||4|
|7||Armstrong, Les||0||27y 39d||108||0|
|25||Baker, Jack||1||22y 228d||23||7|
|9||Brownlees, Rupe||0||26y 90d||67||1|
|12||Dalton, Bert||0||22y 337d||53||0|
|26||Eason, Alec||0||24y 259d||93||52|
|15||Eason, Bill||1||32y 222d||200||173|
|2||Fairbairn, Les||0||25y 91d||65||20|
|20||Gray, Jack||0||28y 342d||45||6|
|8||Grigg, Dick||0||29y 47d||188||62|
|1||Heinz, George||2||22y 290d||83||66|
|6||James, Les 'Jack'||1||24y 26d||52||13|
|21||Johns, Alwyn||1||20y 130d||21||6|
|14||Martini, Percy||3||26y 51d||91||233|
|4||McCarter, Billy||0||25y 275d||33||2|
|11||Orchard, Billy||1||25y 350d||102||63|
|28||Scown, Percy||0||31y 12d||119||2|
|10||Slater, Joe||0||25y 238d||104||17|