When they were good, they were very very good…..

The Nomads have returned to the winners’ circle with a lacklustre victory over the Gunnedah Bulldogs at Gunnedah. Best on ground was Tom Hunt who obviously thrived in his town of birth. However, the team as a whole seemed to be going through the motions. (Nonetheless, with the Roos defeating the Saints, the Nomads are now minor premiers.) The final score was 19.12126 to 10.16.76.

Wet soggy conditions greeted the Nomads when they arrived in Gunnedah, many of whom had travelled along the Moonbi Gap Road via Zac’s Gap (thankfully most slowed down before any damage could be inflicted on their axles). The rain had stopped by the time the game started but it made handling the ball difficult. In the Nomads ranks were two old stalwarts, Adam Parish and Hughie Cook and it was excellent to see them both in the Green again.

The Nomads started in fine style with Tom Hunt and Dr Flexo Freund combining well in the middle to send the ball forward. Freundy was in particularly rude form, bursting through the midfield. Out on the flanks, the Graham boys were causing lots of headaches for the Gunnedah backs with The Whippersnapper, Cammy Graham, scoring a wonderful left foot from outside the arc. The Nomads were making good use of the wide-open spaces of the Gunnedah oval and the backline was doing a wonderful job of repelling the Dogs infrequent forays forward. The Walcha duo of Rowdy and Cooky were working well together – a function perhaps of drinking from the same trough. Tommy Hunt was everywhere, marking everything in sight and Mr Ubiquity, Matt Foley, was his usual best, roaming around picking up kicks, seemingly at will. At the end of the first change the Nomads were comfortably placed, leading 6.3.39 to 1.3 9. Things were looking good.

The second quarter saw the Nomads kicking away from the Main Street. There often seems less space (if that makes sense) in the forward line when kicking easterly and that was certainly the case in this quarter. While Freundy and Tom Hunt continued their good work in the middle things were getting clogged up in the forward line. Zac-the-Coach and Weston were working hard in congested conditions. In this quarter Choco Hall was making plenty of run and Mark E Spencer was also getting plenty of good possessions out on the wings. The Woodman of Borneo, Mr Torrie-time himself, also stood up in this quarter with strong work at the contested ball. However, there was very little lateral movement and not much initiative. The result of all of what turned out to be stodgy football was a less productive scoreline. At half time the score was 9.6.60 to 2.9.21.

The third quarter saw the Nomads return to some decent football. Tom Hunt was winning the rucks convincingly and marking well despite the slippery conditions and Zac Wells was breaking packs with his straight-line running and hardness at the ball. In general the team seemed to combine better during this quarter. As a consequence of the improved team play, the Nomads went to the final leading 14.9.93 to 5.14.44.

Now it might be natural to infer, at this point in proceedings, that with a 49 point lead going into the final quarter that the Nomads would run away with it. But it wasn’t to be. The Dogs doubled their score kicking the first 5 goals of the quarter. There was a lack of defensive running in the middle and a general lack of interest across the field, with some notable exceptions. The Nomads finally kicked into gear with Skipper Weston Whitby getting involved in the middle. The Nomads then mimicked the Dogs and kicked 5 goals straight.

Thanks must be given to John (the Stanley-man) Shirley and Jane Guilfoyle for their efforts as runners. We are very grateful.

Best for the Nomads were Tommy Hunt, Matt Foley, Mark Spencer, Rowdy, Freundy, Izzy Graham and Weston Whitby. Overall it was a good effort from the New Englanders. The good passages of play were excellent. But, as Old Mate said, when they were bad they were horrid.

On a more factual note, those who want to know how best to navigate the Moonbi Gap shortcut might be well advised to follow Modra’s sage principle – “wait until you see a shack and then turn either left or right”. Try it, it actually works. (Just be careful to slow down at Economou’s Trench).

Go the Green!

Round 14 2014

Bulldogs def. by Nomads
 GBP GBP
Q1139 6339
HT2921 9660
Q351444 14993
FT101676 1912126

Team:

  • C. Ballagh,
  • C. Barker,
  • V. Chakalisa,
  • H. Cook,
  • Z. Economou,
  • M. Evans,
  • M. Foley,
  • M. Folpp,
  • J. Freund,
  • C. Graham,
  • I. Graham,
  • W. Hall,
  • T. Hunt,
  • S. Maseko,
  • A. Parish,
  • D. Richards,
  • M. Shirley,
  • M. Spencer,
  • A. Walsh,
  • Z. Wells,
  • W. Whitby,
  • M. Woodward.

Goalscorers:

  • W. Whitby (4),
  • M. Foley (3),
  • D. Richards (2),
  • I. Graham (2),
  • Z. Economou (2),
  • C. Graham,
  • M. Folpp,
  • M. Spencer,
  • S. Maseko,
  • V. Chakalisa,
  • W. Hall.

Award winners:

  • T. Hunt (Players' Player),
  • C. Ballagh (Coach's),
  • Z. Wells (President's),
  • H. Cook (Captain's),
  • V. Chakalisa (Spectators').

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