Dogs down the Nomads in Tight Struggle in Gunnedah

For the first time in two years the Nomads have heard their opponents victory song in the sheds. The Gunnedah Bulldogs defeated the Nomads 11.13.79 to 9.16.70 at Wolseley Oval in what was one of the highest quality games of football in the North West league for a number of years. At one moment in the third quarter the Nomads were 14 points up but let the lead slip. Best for the Nomads were Luke ‘Rambo’ Raymond, Cammy Graham, Paddy Tobias and Jez Ratcliffe while up forward the Big Dog James Treweeke and David Rampaging Richards kicked 3 apiece. It was a genuine wake-up call for the Nomads who have been cruising over the past month or so. The Nomads were also short of numbers on Saturday. Luckily we did have some water runners and a big thank you to Lisa Raymond and Tembi Chakalisa for doing the honours at short notice.

Once again the weather was kind to the Nomads with warm and calm conditions at Gunnedah, although the ground was heavy underfoot. The Nomads arrived with only 19 players, with key players Jesse Petrascu, goal sneak Harry Wakefield and Snowy Snowden unavailable but with the Big Dog making a very welcome return. The Dogs’ numbers had been strengthened since their last meeting with the inclusion of a number of strong players from the Narribri Eagles, who have withdrawn from the competition for the season.

There was quite a large crowd in the sportsground, all anticipating a good battle, including contingents from the Tamworth Roos, the Moree Suns and the Narribri Eagles who—perhaps unsurprisingly, given the Nomads’ dominance over the past few years—were strongly behind the Dogs…..often very loudly.

The first quarter was played at a manic pace, with the Nomads kicking to the Oxley Highway end. The Dogs scored the first two goals. Honours were even in the midfield but the Nomads as a whole were not used to the ball being in their back half. They soon recovered and were able to score though some of the shooting for goal was diabolical. Rambo was brilliant in the middle as was Paddy Tobias, both throwing themselves in where angels usually fear to tread. Out on the flanks and wings Bullet was enjoying the open spaces; int eh forward-line Big Dog was leading well and taking some strong marks despite being double-teamed and Modra was his usual dangerous self. Big Phill Mitchell was doing a brilliant job with his close checking of their very tall forwards and his spoiling was copy-book. One curious episode occurred right at the death when Phill somehow convinced a dogs player to kick the ball 10 metres out in front when he was being told not by the umpire and had the free kick overturned. When we were young our mother always said they told me to do it was not a good excuse.

At the first change the scores were 2.3.15 to 1.6.12.

The second saw the Nomads kicking to the eastern end and starting to find their feet. Once again the midfield were engaged with a fierce battle with the Dogs talented mdifielders. However, across the paddock not enough of the Nomads were getting to the contest and too often there was only one Nomads competing with three Dogs who were thus able to control the pace and direction of play. However, they did not have it all their own way. The Nomads had plenty of entries into the forward line but the kicking was not as precise as it had been in previous weeks as a consequence the pressure that the Dogs were able to place on the ball-carrier. Phill Mitchell though showed what is possible with brilliant run after a switch to the corridor, hitting up Cammy who respected the quality of the delivery and dutifully goaled. At half time there was just over a kick in it, with the Bulldogs on 5.6.36 to the Nomads 3.9.27. Goal kicking was obviously crueling the Nomads’ cause.

The third quarter saw the Nomads start to get the upper hand and it looked like they might well be able to overcome the Dogs. But the lack of a bench was starting to tell and the mid-fielders were tiring. In the backline Wulu Hall was able to run the ball out of the backline time and time again and Steve Wilson was doing a great job with his wily ‘old man’ defensive tricks. By the end of the quarter the Nomads were ahead by a point. In this quarter the Nomads did not take full advantage of their greater control of play which in the end was to be decisive, given the lack of a bench.

The last quarter saw a tight struggle with the lead changing a number of times. However, the Nomads ran out of legs and the Dogs were able to win by 9 points despite a late surge from the Nomads and a fortunate dribble goal from the Big Dog. The midfielders, Jez, Paddy and Rambo battled valiantly all day and Cameron was brilliant on the wing. But the overall effort was not enough to stem the Bullgdogs’ boundless enthusiasm. The Dogs beat us at our own running game.

And so the Nomads’ unbeaten streak came to an end. The club has not been beaten since round one of 2015. There are obviously lots of lessons to be taken from this game. Clearly Gunnedah are serious contenders for the 2017 flag and so this is not a time for complacency. Much needs to be done. The Nomads need to get fitter and make sure there are always numbers at contests. The kicking under pressure also needs to improve. So there is lots of work to do and the team now has a real challenge.

Round 8 2017

Bulldogs def. Nomads
 GBP GBP
Q12315 1612
HT5636 3927
Q38957 81058
FT111379 91670

Team:

  • C. Barker,
  • S. Bioletti,
  • V. Chakalisa,
  • L. Cudmore,
  • C. Graham,
  • W. Hall,
  • T. Hunt,
  • E. Karpany,
  • T. Keys,
  • S. Macdonald,
  • P. Mitchell,
  • J. Ratcliffe,
  • L. Raymond,
  • D. Richards,
  • A. Shem,
  • P. Tobias,
  • J. Treweeke,
  • A. Walsh,
  • S. Wilson.

Goalscorers:

  • D. Richards (3),
  • J. Treweeke (3),
  • C. Graham (2),
  • E. Karpany.

Award winners:

  • L. Raymond (Players' Player),
  • W. Hall (Coach's),
  • C. Graham (President's),
  • S. Wilson (Captain's),
  • D. Richards (Meehan's Plumbing Services').

One Response to “Dogs down the Nomads in Tight Struggle in Gunnedah”

  1. #29 Says:

    Less than a kick in it at half time? 36-27. Are we doing the 9-point supergoal thing this season then?

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