Round 8: Something different
For the past three years, the first Sunday in September has meant that Cannons families skipped through the mandatory Fathers’ Day ritual of cold toast and unwrapping novelty socks in bed to focus on a Grand Final. 2020 has been so unpredictable, disruptive and just plain different, that this first Sunday in September was never going to be the same as the others!
It was Round 8 and the Cannons 15/2s found themselves travelling to Alan Davidson Oval to play Glebe-Newtown. The Cannons have already played every other team in the competition twice this year but this was the first time these two teams would meet in 2020. Two weeks away from finals and the boys find themselves facing a new opponent for the first time! Mmmm… that’s different!
Things looked different on the field too. Glebe-Newtown is a joint venture so their grey and red jumpers were new in this division and the Cannons line looked different. Reliable backman Grechie lined up in at full forward while goal kicking machine JB stood smiling in the backline.
Amidst all these differences though, Rigger’s domination of the ruck proved to be constant providing first use for the Cannons midfield. Glebe-Newtown play with real intensity. Possession in the first quarter was a fairly even match but the Cannons were able to use their forward entries more effectively and found themselves a couple of goals ahead at the first break.
At quarter time, Coach Paul pointed out a lack of talk left the Cannons unaware of options or impending tackles. They were working hard but not efficiently. What he said clearly made a difference as the execution in the second quarter was much better. As the game progressed the Cannons defence stayed strong and the forwards and mids demonstrated much better movement.
Some positional changes at the break but things still looked pretty different with regular forward Woody enjoying the text book defenders “fist first” approach at centre half back. Eathn has been known to get fired up on the field but he was a portrait of discipline, and that discipline was rewarded.
Keen observers of the Cannons will have also noted some differences in the team over the duration of the season. One striking difference is the number of players with genuine pace! Rameez, Max, Elliot and Stewy all demonstrated their blistering speed at various stages in the game running down, and from, their opponents.
Compared to the start of the season the Cannons physical intensity and commitment is also different. It was a tough contest with plenty of heat and a couple of blood rules for good measure. Broadie is the smallest player on the team but his shoulder left a massive dent in the turf after a bone crunching tackle. He showed enormous ticker however to return to the field after a brief rest and lay bone crunching tackles of his own. Similarly, Kipp only had eyes for the ball and went in hard. Even late in the game when the result was beyond doubt, Killa and Cruisey would not concede anything and Lachy’s four quarter effort was his best game all year.
At the other end of the ground, Husky’s forward pressure was excellent and Luka looked delighted when his persistence resulted in a magnificent crumber’s goal. Their smiles however couldn’t eclipse Dallas who marked on the 50 right on the final siren. His magnificent long range goal after the siren will make a massive difference to his confidence at that range.
As they always do, the midfield were the hardest workers. It makes all the difference to a defender when you have a mobile midfield target and equally all the difference to a forward when the delivery into the forward line is pin point. Damo’s work rate was second to none and Cooper had the ball on a string has he covered pretty well every inch of the ground.
The team has gelled well and the way they work together as a team is making all the difference. The Cannons have never played in the second week of September before so every week from here will be something new. The focus now has to be on a strong performance next week to secure a top two spot and that will make all the difference come finals.
- Stephen Grech