CARLTON'S LAST DITCH
The long lane down which the Richmond fellows have tramped in their quest of victory against Carlton seemed to have reached a turning on Saturday afternoon on Prince's Oval. But it turned out to be only a blind alley after all. Richmond have never gone nearer of late years to beating Carlton than they did on Saturday, and on the merits they, and not the other side, were entitled to a narrow victory. For they were playing better football at the best end of the game, which is the closing stage. Including large contingents from each club, there were about 16,500 people present. There were condition, over which the players had no influence, that went far to spoil what would otherwise have been a fast game, for one saw occasionally, and only occasionally, those flashes of skill and pace which count for so much in the Australian game. There was a high wind blowing, but that was not the worst. The ball, which looked symmetrical enough, played strange tricks with the footballers all through the match, and, while men on both sides were doing clever things and unexpected things, the ball did the unexpected if not the clever thing in a way that simply destroyed all anticipation, seriously affected both the kicking and the marking, and hampered Richmond especially in short, flashing passes, which would otherwise have been the finest feature of their play. All through the first half it was a poor game, and that distinctly through no fault of the men.
If there was any gain in the wind, Carlton had it in the opening quarter, and through the first half they looked a winning side. A pass from Brown to Hammond gave them an easy but ineffective chance. Shortly afterwards Sharp gave it to Lowe, who kicked badly. Reeves, with a fine dash up the centre for Richmond, put Carlton's goal in danger, but Baud and McGregor replied breezily, and from the centre gave Cook and Lowe in turn scoring chances, which brought nothing material. Richmond got their turn and made better use of it, for Hughes gave the ball to Keggin, who with a first-rate kick got their first goal. They were coming in again hard, when little McDonald on the half back line checked them. Still later Baud, with a nice dodging dash, kept Richmond from getting home. In the matter of holding the ball both sides were given a slight indulgence. Richmond overdid it. Scadden got a free kick and scored Carlton's first goal. Richmond should have replied at once, for Reeves, with a drive alone the wing, gave Hall an easy chance, which went for nothing. The shots were pretty frequent, but in between was very little attractive football. McGregor, who was quite up to his old from on the centre line, gave Gardiner a shot, but a good kick was not straight. In a long spell of battling Reeves and McDonald were seen to advantage. It ended with a running shot to Keggin, who sent the ball across the goal front. Richmond's short passing was always better than that of Carlton, who excelled in strong, straightforward dashes, but the kicking on both sides was hopelessly erratic. The difficulty seemed to be to get the ball into the air; grubbers were the rule. Carlton were still the stronger side, and both Lowe and Brown—the last-named with a very fine mark—had possible chances out of which little came. Just on the end of the quarter Leehane snapped Carlton's second goal, and at the change they were leading by 2-5 to Richmond's 1-1.
Immediately on opening the second phase Gardiner failed in a running shot, and a pass from Green to Cook brought no better result. Richmond were picking up. One of their rushes ended with Arbrew, who went close, but not close enough. McKendry, of Richmond, from a free kick, passed in to James hatting valiantly as usual, in the thick of the ruck. He marked well, but his kicking, as the barrackers put it, was "nothing to write home about." Carlton broke in, and after several misses, Cook, out of a scramble, snatched Carlton's third goal. Jamieson, on their back line, was more than once in just the right spot to check Richmond's efforts when they looked mischievous, but several times when the visiting side trusted to their pace, they found that the Carlton of to-day, if not so formidable a side as it was a few seasons back, has pace. Cook was very active forward for the Blues, and his next shot hit the goal-post. Before the end of the quarter Herbert marked within rather easy distance for Richmond, but his shot never lifted the ball, and the next instant it was out in the wings, where Green shot it up to Gardiner who scored Carlton's fourth goal. At half time they had 4-9 to 2-4, and Richmond looked a beaten side.
Immediately on commencing the third term they began to upset that impression, and thence right on to the end they played the better game. Yet the Blues were the first in action, McGregor again being the chief agent. His effort gave both Cook and Gardiner hurried and wasted opportunities. Richmond's chief fault was bad marking, and up to that stage, though Carlton's forwards were nothing out of the common they were always better placed when they got the ball than the Richmond fellows, who had possession frequently, but always on angles which made goal kicking almost impossible. Their prospect brightened when Maybury, from the wing, scored their third goal from a difficult and excellent shot. It was the sequel to one of Reeves's dashing runs. Next Mahony put it out of range again for Richmond, but Daykin, playing back, was just in the right spot. For a little while Richmond attacked fiercely. A pass from Hall to Ohlsen brought only a point. Another attack by Reeves and Mahony ended with Jamieson, as usual in the right position. Clancy and McGregor, on Carlton's centre line, were always conspicuous, and once they got the ball they rarely lost it. They not only ran well but dodged coolly and cleverly. Though Richmond were having the better of the quarter, their goal shooting was still defective. Maybury and Keggin had tries, the last named, as frequently happened, sending the ball across the front of the goal. Another quick dash by Richmond to Hughes, and Maybury placed it in front of Carlton's goal, where Hall snapped it through out of a cluster, getting their fourth goal, and leaving Carlton only four points in the lead. Haughton scored a behind just before the last change, when the scores were Carlton 4-11, to Richmond 4-6. It was only the bad position in which their forwards were placed when shooting that prevented Richmond taking the lead in this quarter.
All through the last term it was a desperate and exciting battle, with the issue swinging in the balance in a way that gave intensity and excitement to the play. Carlton as usual commenced the attack, but both Lowe and Gardiner, though so often prominent, could add little to the score. Then Baud attracted notice by a dashing run along the wing, but it brought Carlton nothing of consequence. James had a try for Richmond, but again could not hoist the ball. Richmond were pressing desperately hard, and when Hughes got fifth goal for them the Yellow and Black were at last in front, and excitement burned. A chain of beautiful marks along the wing ended with Keggin, who again got only a behind. It was desperate fighting now, and Brown more than once gave Carlton relief when they needed it badly. The crisis of the game was reached when Lowe passed the ball in from the wing to McKenzie, and he scored Carlton's fifth goal, putting them a couple of points ahead again with only 10 minutes to play. That 10 minutes was as fierce as it could be, Richmond generally attacking, and Keggin had a shot just as the bell rang. It was low and short, the ball was touched, and the game ended in a narrow victory for Carlton by 2 points, the scores being:
CARLTON, 5 goals 13 behinds (43 points).
RICHMOND, 5 goals 11 behinds (41 points).
Although both sides kicked badly, Richmond had more tries which failed to score even a point, and even two points would have made a vast difference. For the winners three men stood out very prominently. It is enough to say that they were always in it, and scarcely ever made a mistake, the three being McGregor, Clancy, and McDonald. Brown, towards the end, and Baud, all through, played fast and clever football. Others who came into prominence were Daykin, Jamieson, as a full back, and Leehane, especially when in the ruck. Like their opponents, Richmond had three who won distinction, Reeves, James, and Hall, but others who played good football were Thorpe, Thomas, and Danks, in their defence, and Hughes, in the ruck. Their forwards were active, but erratic.
When Norman Clark, the coach of the Carlton team, went out on the oval to give his side a word of advice at the opening of the last quarter of their game with Richmond on Saturday, he founded himself "in the hands of the police." A constable pursued and compelled him to leave the ground. "Only trainers and players—those are my instructions." he said, and the explanation by Mr. Clark that his duty was to advise the players, had no effect. As Mahomet couldn't go to the mountain, the mountain was obliged to go to Mahomet, so Haughton, captain of the side, came off the field for orders. Although the coach of the team should have been privileged, the gain of having the oval free of the hordes of youngsters who once infested it is too great to be minimised by occasional errors of judgment on the part of the police. If, by a little bit of extra zeal, a constable could persuade the crowd inside the reserves to look at matches with both eyes it would add something to the pleasure of games at Carlton. Far too many of them seem to have, at the moment, the limitations of Cyclops.
If the instructions which some of the League coaches give their players at half-time were faithfully reported it would make interesting reading. The plan followed by Ricketts, of Richmond, is to take each man in turn, and offer a few observations that invariably touch the point, especially the weak point. Thus, on Saturday, to one of his centre men, "You get the ball just as often as McGregor, but when McGregor gets it a goal for Carlton nearly always follows. You see the difference, don't you? ‘Nuf sed."
Title: Richmond's gallant finish. Carlton's last ditch.
Publisher: The Argus (Melbourne, Vic: 1848 - 1957)
Date: Monday, 15 June 1914, p.8
Title: Football incidents
Publisher: The Argus (Melbourne, Vic: 1848 - 1957)
Date: Monday, 15 June 1914, p.8
Thanks to Stephen Wade for helping to prepare this report.
|25||Baud, Alf||0||21y 266d||23||14|
|2||Brown, Ted||0||22y 238d||12||1|
|26||Calwell, George||0||22y 346d||3||0|
|8||Clancy, Tom||0||27y 63d||75||10|
|22||Cook, Bill||1||26y 280d||4||9|
|3||Daykin, Percy||0||23y 341d||8||1|
|13||Gardiner, Vin||1||28y 233d||111||235|
|17||Green, Gordon||0||24y 105d||40||30|
|24||Hammond, Charlie||0||28y 86d||98||19|
|5||Haughton, Harry||0||28y 162d||44||11|
|15||Jamieson, Ernie||0||26y 9d||68||4|
|7||Leehane, Steve||1||22y 236d||9||2|
|30||Lowe, Jack||0||23y 232d||28||26|
|4||McDonald, Andy||0||28y 168d||70||34|
|19||McGregor, Rod||0||31y 237d||151||19|
|27||McKenzie, Stan||1||24y 27d||3||2|
|23||Scaddan, Albert||1||26y 191d||3||1|
|20||Sharp, Athol||0||20y 73d||10||5|
|23||Arbrew, Jack||0||24y 313d||10||0|
|16||Bettles, Artie||0||23y 80d||8||0|
|24||Danks, Arthur||0||22y 281d||27||2|
|9||Farrell, Ted||0||24y 237d||49||4|
|22||Hall, Clarrie||2||24y 146d||33||40|
|1||Herbert, Barney||0||25y 113d||74||19|
|8||Hughes, Frank 'Checker'||0||20y 107d||7||4|
|15||James, Hughie||0||24y 40d||89||29|
|18||Keggin, Ted||1||22y 320d||43||62|
|10||Mahoney, Bill||0||29y 163d||128||60|
|3||Maybury, Percy||1||22y 262d||68||42|
|25||McKendry, Bob||0||24y 299d||6||1|
|14||Moffatt, Dave||0||22y 26d||29||1|
|2||Ohlson, Ted||1||27y 241d||91||30|
|11||Reeves, Syd||0||22y 288d||54||3|
|20||Richardson, Ned||0||28y 18d||22||4|
|28||Thomas, Bill 'Sonna'||0||27y 215d||143||2|
|5||Thorp, Vic||0||23y 231d||80||6|