Round 10

WEST FOOTSCRAY ROOSTERS - Under 9 Reds vs. Flemington Juniors – Round Ten - 23/6/17.

Good Evening Sports Fans.

It was always there in the fixture, Round Ten. Even after round one, it was still nine rounds away so mathematically it had to come. Sure enough, a round nine win against Albion meant a Round Ten clash with Flemington was imminent. At least we had nine rounds to prepare.  Not necessarily preparing for the best team, but there is something about them that makes you want to play your best. Is it because last year they were coached by Scotty Cummings? Is it because they film every game? I don’t know, just a bit of ego talkin’ I guess.  We have a good record against The Colts though. Recent history has at one win a piece. It would be nice to go one up!

Our Captains for the day would be Otto and Riley. We lost the toss and were kicking to the Commissions.

Wait….. Is that a drone hovering over our heads?! What did I tell ya!

The first stanza would prove to be a tight tussle but the Niner’s would prove to be a little bit slicker than the Colts. It took a few minutes of sizing each other up before Archie, determined not to repeat his inaccuracy from last week, kicked his and our first for the day. As I mentioned, it was tight, but we had all the answers. Sasha the Dasher, as usual ran his socks off and Howe Diddy was electric. Raz was monstrous, I might have to start calling him “Hurls” such is his strength. Clara and Archer kept up the pressure in the forward line as did Oliver and Jack P in defence. Harry and Archie took fine marks and at the siren, it was close with the Niner’s up by seven points, 19 to 12.

The Second Quarter would be just as tight as the first. The effort of Niner’s was outstanding across the board. Diesel was chasing and tackling as was Abby. Lace Up, like the Joker, was at the bottom of most packs, Dylan and Jack G kept up the heat in the middle and Dozer and Aiden patrolled the forward line like hungry dogs looking for scraps. Oscar and Jack G linked up for a nice play which made me think that we have come a long way this year. The only score of the quarter would be a goal to Howe Diddy who owned the footy and would prompt Kane’s opposite Manager to call the Heartland before half time!

The tussle would continue in the third, with both goal umpires drinking Latte’s and enjoying a little down time in the morning sun. However the battle between the opposing goal posts was fierce. Louis and Max ‘more than a’ Phelan were injected into the mid field and kept the Roosters engine rumbling. Riley assumed his usual third quarter role in the ruck with his newly shaved scone adding to the physical menace that he provides. Archer, who is taking it up a notch each week, was crunched in bone rattling tackle that shook him up momentarily but he continued on, not wanting to miss out on the action. Iggy had a terrific second half, he looks to be really enjoying getting his hands dirty and went on to win Rooster of the Week for his efforts and Captain Otto had his skates on chasing the footy through the middle. The back line was strong with Jami, Archie and Harry providing the run off half back and Rylan hanging tough at full back.

It was still close at the beginning of the last, only fourteen points. Considering that they had only kicked twelve points so far, it seemed unlikely. You could feel the energy in the huddle, like a shaken can of Coke ready to be opened by an unwitting Rube .The past two quarters had been restricting and The Little Red Roosters were ready to offer our hosts a little drink.

“Why thank you Roosters, don’t mind if we do”!

Siren sounds, whistle blows, then silence, everything appears in slow motion. Everything except the Niners!  Enough was enough; they exploded from the blocks leaving the Colts at the gates. Harry kicked the first. Raz crashed his way forward to land one on the chest of Iggy. Unfortunately it drifted across the face for a Wilbur Poster. Marking would be a pleasing feature of the quarter with Harry, Louis, Archie, Dozer, Maxie and Iggy all taking grabs. The pressure on the Colts was relentless. Archer and Action Jackson kept the wings flapping. Archie roved to kick his third, Raz attacked to kick his first, Maxie ducked and weaved for his first and Archie would round it out with his forth. The Colts would manage one, their first score since the first quarter but the rout had already been inflicted; 9.4.58 – 3.0.18. Five goals to one in the last, well done Roosters. Ego soothed!

Well, we have earned it. Our turn for a rest this weekend with the Niner’s snagging the bye in the first week of school hols. Enjoy your time off Little Red Roosters. Our next game will be a cracker under Friday Night Lights against the mite of Williamstown. We will be keen to follow on from the success of the Blues in what we hope will be an annual tradition of Friday night footy. We hope to see you all there.

Special thanks to Brad for tending to the wounded, and to everyone who filled the volunteered roles, and to those who cheered us on away from home, we can’t do this without you, it is most appreciated.

Richie and Kane. Round 10 – Away to Altona Vikings.

 

After last weeks strong and disciplined performance we had a spring in our step as we prepared in the chilly morning air for this encounter.

 

Our Captains today are Alan Luu and Miles Martin – a good reward for ongoing strong efforts and improvements.

 

1st Quarter;

The first tap of the day was won by Jake, down to Arti, who then moved it on to Mitchell – we were away immediately with some good Teamwork. Mitchell applied good pressure around a loose ball which eventually came out to Oscar – who kicked the games first Goal.

From the kick-off, the ball headed the other way through loose Viking players and and their good foot passing.

We re-focussed and the game became more of a battle between the 50m archs.

Efe was working hard at getting the ball forward for us, Alex had some big kicks – clearing players in defence.  Mitchell was rewarded for a strong tackle in our goalsquare with a free kick – he settled and kicked truly for another Goal.

Oscar kept tackling hard and Bastien was rewarded for repeat efforts at tackling with a free kick.

 

2nd Quarter;

We lost our shape and concentration a bit in this period of the game.  We were struggling to defend against the Vikings spread out players and didn't have options ourselves when we had the ball.

(C)Alan was harassing the Viking whenever he was near the ball,  there was strong tacklers in Malik, Arti, Maya and Arlo S-T.

We had some goal saving efforts by Jake, Bastien and (C)Miles.

Jacob and Nathaniel took a good marks.  Max did well under pressure to get a handball away to a Teammate.  Sophia did well to keep the ball in our area. Jake made a great smother on the mark and rolled up with a tackle.

 

At half time we talked about how we had gone away from doing all the good things that had helped us last week and in the first quarter.

Let's get the Vitamin c into us, and lets start this game from now and try to keep our shape and kick to the first option.

 

3rd Quarter;

The game had maybe gotten away from us in the second quarter – but there was a re-need enthusiasm after the long break.

Kai set the example of sticking close to the Viking opposition, Eli and Alex were still applying pressure, Malik had a good kick through the centre of the ground.

We were passing the ball a bit more (sometimes not quite far enough – but the right idea) and working the ball out of defence along the boundary (sometimes going out – but again, the right idea)

Maya had a good handball out of the pack to a Teammate.  Griffin continued his strong all round efforts – highlighted by a smother creating a point scored.

Hadi was bustling the ball forward for his Team.  Felix was strong in defence – watching the ball when surrounded by Vikings.  Noah was watching the play better and sticking to his opposition. Oscar won himself another kick with a great tackle.

A very even quarter – a big improvement from the Second – with not much scoring by either Team.

 

 

4th Quarter;

Ok Team, we have got back into the game - lets finish strong.

Mrinal laid tackles, got some possessions and kept up our pressure.

Max again quickly got a handball out of the pack to Oscar – kick to our goalsquare, where Jacob gathered the ball and Goaled.

Oscar took another good mark, Felix saved a goal in defence and kept going at the ball.  Arlo M guarded his space in defence and made a good tackle.  Hadi had a good kick out of defence.  Nathaniel kept running and offering an option to pass to.  Griff was trying to link with his Teammates.

Late in the quarter, Jake bustled across our crowded goalsquare and snapped the last Goal of the day.

-              A great way to finish the game.

 

Today the Heartland Award went to (C)Miles Martin – for ongoing efforts with and without the ball.

 

Our Rooster Awards went to Maya and Oscar – for continually setting good examples of effort and Teamwork.

 

 

We played well in patches today – but went away from holding our shape at times, and that is when we were scored against.

 

 

Things to work on this week;

-              Kicking on the run.

-              Keepy - off how to keep passing the ball to an option in space.

-              What positions should our players be in when the ball is in different spots on the field.

 

Overall well done Players,

well done Flag-wavers, Whistle-blowers, H2O Holders, Magnet Movers, Orange-Quarterers, First aid, Press, Paparazzi and Cheer-squad,

Thank-you (as always) Ash, Monique and Paul, and anyone who cannot fit themselves into a previous mentioned spot.

 

See you at training,

Regards,

Paul

 

 

 

U10 Match Report Round 10 Newport vs West Footscray

 

I adore all of these little boys, but there’s one I feel a particularly filial, dna-induced affection for.  Luckily for me, I have the pleasure of living with Benny the Dentist and so have been privy to the weekly countdown to his fiftieth game (a countdown in train since July 2016…).  At 9 years, 10 months and 24 days he surely has to be the youngest player in the history of the club to manage that milestone.  Could he possibly play 200 games for West Footscray?  Bronze sculpture on its way.  Please excuse the self-indulgence, but hey, write a match report and you too can wax lyrical about your own child.

 

In the spirit of the theme, I thought I’d base this report around the top 50 highlights of what was a super, all-round brilliant team effort this week.

 

1st quarter…

  • More than half the team arriving before the door was even unlocked. We’re getting better folks!

 

  • Several parents offering extra assistance despite all jobs being filled. Thanks for all your support, it makes the game flow so much more smoothly.

 

  • Marlon forgetting his socks, just when I thought the manager’s kit bag had every possible spare item imaginable.

 

  • The guard of honour provided by the Newport team to welcome Benny onto the ground. Set the tone for a lovely match played in a really great spirit.

 

  • The 5XL runner’s polo, looking more like a tent than a shirt. A comical highlight for all but the runner.

 

  • Marlon’s immediate push forward from the middle, catching Newport unawares.

 

  • Manny’s quick snap on goal within the first few minutes.

 

  • The 2nd, 3rd and 4th efforts by Eli in tackling, chasing, and smothering which he kept up for the entire match, earning him the Heartland Award.

 

  • A brilliant mark by Patrick to swing the flow immediately to our forward line.

 

  • Alex running around 4 opponents to pass it to Noah the goal machine, who kicked truly.

 

  • Great smother by the Dentist, first of many for the game.

 

  • Impressive body work by Flynn stopping any attempt by Newport to clear the ball out of their defence.

 

  • Terrific defensive work on the Newport forward line by Nicholas, tackling and smothering, which continued throughout the game.

 

  • Great mark by Rory in the middle just as Newport were pushing forward. He held this position solidly all game.

 

  • The Kiir-Hamish-Noah combination terrifying the Newport back line.

 

  • An opposition parent overheard exclaiming “gee that Number 18” can run! Yes, Reuben sure can.

 

  • Great work out of defence by Zaw Zaw, preventing Newport from getting close to scoring.

 

  • A goal by Hamish just on the siren, taking us into the quarter-time break at 2.4 having kicked with the (icy) wind.

 

  • Mad dash to the change rooms to rescue an errant mouthguard – aside from the mid-game workout for the manager this was not a highlight but it doesn’t hurt to slot in a reminder to all players to have all gear organised and ready to go.

 

2nd quarter…

  • Goal to Ashton shortly after play resumed.

 

  • Very cosy bench blankies supplied by Lisa, which up until this point have been surplus to requirements but which had a serious workout on Sunday.

 

  • Ferocious tackling in the backline from Patrick, Zeke, Leo, Ben, Reuben, Hamish… Newport just couldn’t break through.

 

  • Great reading of the play by Leo and William to clear the ball out of defence time after time.

 

  • Joharo patrolling the centre like a general and directing the ball forward.

 

  • Strong kicking into the wind by Kiir to clear the ball from danger.

 

  • Restricting Newport to a 1 point quarter with the wind, while kicking several of our own (our conversion could still do with some work though!).

 

3rd quarter…

  • An immediate goal to Alex within seconds of play resuming.

 

  • Brilliant reading of the play by Thomas, swooping as he did all game to get the ball quickly to Patrick.

 

  • Umpire Dave pinging Patrick for running too far. Not a highlight, but it couldn’t go un-mentioned.

 

  • Swarming of Ashton-Manny-Alex in the forward line to repeatedly pepper the goals (did I already mention that conversion rate…?)

 

  • A brilliant, text-book tackle by Ben earning a free kick and saving a sure Newport goal.

 

  • Umpire Dave paying a second free for running too far, this time against Ben. Again not a highlight, but you could never question his bias.

 

  • A courageous smother by Flynn thwarting Newport’s first set shot on goal.

 

  • An exciting, attention-grabbing passage from Reuben hoovering the ball from the centre, streaming down the wing and booting the ball towards goal – deserved better than a point.

 

  • Patrick marking the kick-in and immediately kicking a goal.

 

  • Brilliant mark to Reuben on the half-back line, followed by the trademark run-around-onto-his-left-foot (and-by-now-every-scout-knows-this-kid-is-a-ball-magnet-and-can-run-like-the-wind-so-just-be-sure-to-keep-him-off-his-left).

 

  • Flynn emerging from the pack for an impressive, if awry kick on goal.

 

  • Alex seizing on the subsequent scrum to finish off the quarter with a goal.

 

  • Des’ 3/4 time address, drawing on his trademark wisdom and imparting a few life lessons along the way. This particular address congratulated the boys on their whole-team effort to that point and encouraged them to bring it home.  It went something along the lines of… "It's got to be a do-or-die effort. It's got to be a determined effort. You've got to show me all the guts and determination you've got in your body. You've got to inspire me with this last quarter finish. You've been in front all day and you've got to stay there."  Pretty good stuff.

 

4th quarter…

  • William desperately diving on a Newport-bound ball to thwart any chance of a final quarter comeback.

 

  • Ben surging through the middle from the backline to take a terrific mark.

 

  • Marlon bursting through the pack to somehow find a way forward to Noah.

 

  • Kiir guarding the Newport goals, preventing any last minute scoring.

 

  • Dave throwing in yet another ‘ran too far’ free to Newport. Seriously, he’s umpiring with one of those wheel things we used to have in primary school in the 80s, before lasers, and digital technology and the like, (you know the ones that you roll around and they click when you pass certain increments.  I think it’s called a trundle wheel.  Stay with me.)

 

  • The final tally of 7 goals (and too many points) while restricting Newport to 1.1.

 

  • The attempt by several boys to chair Ben off the ground, nearly dropping him on his head in the process.

 

  • The eventually successful chair-off managed by Kiir (on his own).

 

  • The glorious, joyful performance of ‘Roosters, Roosters, Roosters, cock-a-doodle-do’ heard bellowing from the Visitors’ change-rooms (thank God the U13s have moved onto something a little more manly… I really can’t imagine the likes of Zidane and Juma belting that one out...)

 

  • The support of all our parent volunteers today, including Craig whose son Tem was a late withdrawal but he still donned the yellow escort vest nonetheless.

 

  • The dedication and commitment of Coach Des who gives these boys so much, week after week even though his time is well and truly taken up by other matters at present. Love your work, Des!

 

Andrea

 

Here we go;

 

Round 10 was the first of the return matches and so we ventured to Kinder Smith (what or who is Kinder Smith?  Google failed to enlighten this seasoned scribe) to take on Sunshine.  We delved into the notebook on what they served up last time and all the notes centred on #12.  There was no question the lad could play (he played interleague so we weren’t the only ones that knew he could play).

 

We had a couple of late (very late) withdrawals leaving us with 16.  We did have Jack and Weston on the fast train from Altona, but we took the field without them.  Jonathan won the toss and we kicked with the breeze – massive bonus, as we surged out of the middle via Alex, Lenny and our skipper, Jonathan.  This gave plenty of supply for Soc and Diesel to do their usual bit and hit the scoreboard early.  The boys, however, were only in second gear – drifting, grouping and kicking down the line; all things we wish to avoid and after a lacklustre quarter, 4 goals to 1 with a significant breeze gave the coaching staff a bit to ponder.

 

Hamish making his debut proved a handy asset and one of the highlights was him getting his first goal – into the breeze no less, that allowed us to score 2 goals to none in the second.  Henry and Ben were winning their positions – something Sunshine didn’t handle at all.  Combine that with Juma, Leo, Isaac, Bailey and Samuel holding down the fort in the backline – West asserted their dominance.  Juma playing very tight, Leo – reading the play well and both Isaac and Bailey refusing to let the ball past.  All traits of dominant sides.  Lenny continued to marshal the troops, I love the way he plays, he puts his head over it, knows how to look for an option and doesn’t buckle under pressure from the opposition.  The long break came with the Roosters in control 6.5 to 1.1.

 

The instructions at half time was to sharpen the skills, play to the whistle and put Sunshine away in the 3rd quarter.  Juma was moved forward, Hamish slotted onto the back flank, Ben into the ruck and Diesel up onto a wing.  This gave Sunshine even more to think about.  #12 was struggling to assert any influence – particularly given Liam was assigned the task of minimising his impact; a job he mastered with aplomb.  The third started with Jack and Weston (much needed reinforcements) hovering around half forward, and what a nuisance they proved to be.  Time and time again, they got on the end of the clearance and set up chances for Soc, Juma and Nav.  Nav, despite a return bout of the fumbles, continued to involve himself in many passages of play and proved a massive headache for our hosts.    6 goals to none ended the contest but there was still work to do.  One of the highlights was Juma winning a deliberate rushed behind free kick to kick one of our 6 goals for the quarter – a rule rarely seen enforced at this level, but strictly speaking it was the right call.

 

The last 20 minutes saw another reshuffle of the borad.  Lachie – who had been very solid all game, involved himself again to bob up and kick a vital goal into the wind.  Henry and Samuel continued to dominate their positions.  Samuel playing a very impressive game across half back and repelling the odd wave of Sunshine attack.  His kicking continues to impress.  Hitting targets, both long and short is a skill all would do well to try to replicate.  Henry, time and time again shows his elite running power and we have yet to see anyone who can match it with him.  Not to be outdone was Bailey, who again shows his worth to his team through his versatility.  When the time comes for him to go, he goes and is rarely beaten in a 1-on-1 contest.  Although the opposition coach may have had his wires crossed re our goal kickers, Bailey was a deserved winner of the Heartland Award today.  His season to date has been one of consistency.  He is always willing to play the role asked of him and it is always carried out with a minimum of fuss – well deserved Bailey!

 

The final siren sounded to confirm another solid Rooster victory.  The boys had survived being the hunted – yet that mantle will not disappear over the remaining 4 home and away games.  The challenges keep on coming, with a loaded Williamstown arriving at Shorten on Sunday looking to atone for their last effort against our Red & White machine.

 

Thanks to Weston and Jack for answering our SOS – particularly Jack who felt the full brunt of U13 footy; rest up pal, we may need you again soon.  Thanks also go to our band of helpers and supporters.  Shannon with the fruit, Simon M on boundary (keep practicing those throw ins), Margriet on first aid duties, Yenny & Thomas with drinks, Jamie T in goals and Con escorting umpires and Arjuna on the clock.

 

We get a few boys back next game, but that by no means suggests the load will be taken up by others.  Continue working on the track boys, plenty of hard work is ahead of us.  The WRFL just don’t hand out awards for 10 games.  The season is hotting up and it is time for the Roosters to take it to the next level.

 

Our regular team awards were shared amongst Diesel and Samuel today.  We pride our performance on team first and play your role accountability and these two fine young Roosters continue to display these traits in spades.  Well earnt boys!!

 

Onwards we go and make sure we get to training to keep working hard on our game.

 

Scores:  WFFC 15.9.99 def Sunshine 2.2.14

Goals: Soc 3, Nav 2, Diesel 2, Juma 2, Hamish 1, Lachie 1, Weston 1, Liam 1, Henry 1, Ben 1

 


Round 9

Round 9 – Home to Newport Power

“Friday Night, Under Lights”

What a build up to the Game!  Then players were excited, this Coach was a bit nervous, the growing crowd were anxious of being entertained.  The occasion warranted proper adjudication and that was provided by the best appointed umpire in the business – Colin.

The lights had fully taken over, no clouds in the sky and a slight mist rolls in.

Pre-game we talked about taking quick-options, kicking the ball more and holding our positions better.

Our Captains today – Malik Jalloh and Felix Cameron.

 

1st Quarter;

We are kicking to the Dog Park end.

Hugo got us off to a good start with a kick from the wing, marked by Jacob. We worked the ball into our forward 50. Oscar was getting the ball in good positions, Jake was already getting plenty of touches.

We we're getting repeat entries to our forward 50. Jacob pumped the ball back in again – this time Efe took a good mark, he settled and kicked his first goal for the season.

We were off to a good start and it quickly got better – Jake found room to swing onto his left boot after gathering the ball – another goal.

Were getting good reward for our spreading of the ball and field position.

When the ball did get up the other end – Miles was very good under pressure, getting his handball away and Arti made a great pass to Efe.

The whistle sounded for quarter time – that was the best quarter I think we have played so far this season.  We've talked about the things we were doing well, and the next positions and roles of the players.

 

2nd Quarter;

In different positions, with the same discipline of holding those positions and repeatedly taking the first pass option – we were attacking end again.

Griffin and Jake had a couple of pings that went behind the big sticks.

Alan was making his tackles stick, Sophia was brave and defending well

(C)Felix was working hard wide on the members boundary – knocking the ball to team mates advantage and gaining ground.

Our players were working hard with repeated efforts : Hadi, Mrinal and Noah all defended well for the Team.

Arlo M chased hard and (C) Malik took a great mark in defence.

Griffin was providing run and carry and got plenty of the ball.

The ball rebounded between our goal-square and forward 50m.  Eventually Nathaniel took a great mark from a high ball, just wide of the pack in the goal-square.  From a 45* angle he settled and kicked well for a goal.

 

We congratulated each other for another well played quarter and between our oranges, we talked about starting again and to keep doing the things that we had done well so far.

 

3rd Quarter;

After the long break Newport came out extra enthused.

The Power got an early point – possibly a warning shot.

Our Roosters needed more reminder s this quarter from Ash and myself to watch for loose opposition players and to maintain their positions. This was mainly because we were chasing the ball more this quarter.

Bastien made a good kick-in , using the whole goal-square.

Oscar and Bastien combined to spoil a marking attempt near the Power goal-line.

Hugo showed great courage going for his marks, Max was trying hard to help his Team-mates.

Oscar was going hard for his marks and made good decisions with his defensive kicks.

Newport was now locking the ball in their half.

Alex made a good kick-in along the boundary, Maya made repeated efforts at the ball in defence and Hadi was tackling hard and bustling the ball our way.

We worked hard and got the ball forward.

Arlo S-T had held his position on the field, when other s were bunching up.

Mitchell was unlucky with a snap that was touched by one of our players, who thought it was going to hit the post.

From the kick-in, Newport caught us out the back, as we had all pushed so hard forward – and scored their first goal of the game.

 

4th Quarter;

The game was now on Team; lets keep the energy up, get back to holding our positions passing to our first option.

Felix had a clearing kick from our  defensive 50.

Eli got away a pass under pressure.

One of my favourite plays today; Griffin-kick mark-Jake-kick mark-Oscar through the middle of the ground.

We had indeed lifted for this last quarter.

Mitchell had good attack on the ball and provided good run.

Arti provided excellent effort around the ball and Eli tackled well.

Oscar took another mark.

Jacob took a strong pack mark near our point post.  He went back over the mark and kicked a check-side ba-na-nah from a very sharp angle.

After the game arm-wrestled to the final siren, it was a justified final score that showed just what  we can do – when we do the right things.

 

Well done to all the players, Thankyou to the supporters – we certainly could hear your encouragement.

Thanks to Mark – our scribe today for your notes on all the players

Monique and Ash – your help is always appreciated

All our other her Parent Volunteers – Thankyou also.

A win on Friday Night leads it’s way nicely into the weekend – starting with h celebrating afterwards at the Clubhouse.  It was great to have a bit of time to hang without h the Parents of our Team also.

 

Reminder;

Don't forget the Team photo’s are this Friday – bring all you usual Game Day gear.

 

Our next game is Sunday 8:50 in Altona

-              Please be there for 8 o’clock.

 

See you Friday,

Cheers,

Paul

 

WEST FOOTSCRAY ROOSTERS - Under 9 Reds vs. Albion – Round Nine - 18/6/17.

Good Evening Sports Fans.

A week can be a long time in footy, two weeks is well, even longer!  The Queens Birthday weekend had come and gone and the extra week left our Little Red Roosters with a little bit more fuel in the tank than normal. Training had been sketchy to say the least, there did not seem to be much point without a game to play. Anyway, the Niner’s bus would roll back into town for a date with Albion. They were up and about in the room’s pre game, with all that pent up energy ready to burn. For those of you who followed us last year, you may remember that we played Albion three times last season so we got to know them pretty well. Each time we played them, they got that little bit closer, but we still managed to have their measure. If a week is a long time in footy then a whole year would seem like an eternity to face them again. I wondered if they had been able to retain their squad, if so I thought, they would be a formidable challenge. As it turns out, they, like us, had lost half of their side to under  tens and were rebuilding a new group of Catters from Nines and Auskickers.

Our Captains for the day would be Oliver and Oscar; we lost the toss and were kicking to the dog park. We would be missing both Clara and Abby due to injury and illness although Clara’s injury would allow her to run water for the game. Nice work Clara! I look forward to having you both back for next week to add some decorum to the team!

The siren would sound and the Roosters exploded. Sasha the Dasher got us off to a flyer with a running goal, the boy is tireless!  Jack P and Iggy were in and amongst it and left the Cats with no room to breathe as the Niner’s heaped on the pressure. Aiden and Max “more than a” Phelan who was nursing a cut finger, were intent on wrapping this one up early. Archer had a cracking game, easily his best so far. Howe Diddy would take consecutive marks in the square for a point and goal respectively showing his nous by grabbing the resultant kick in from his point to slot through a major. Archie would also take a strong grab in the square and kick his first for the day. This would unfortunately be backed up with quite a few points! His overhead marking has come a long way this year, and I can guarantee that he will not let himself down in front of goals again like that! The little Maestro Jami would also kick his first of three for the morning in his usual cheeky style and Action Jackson, who trained the house down just quietly, kicked his first for the season in what was also his best game so far with plenty of nip and run. I was exhausted just watching them and the first quarter would end with the Niner’s unofficially up by 37 points. Seven of those were behinds!

The second quarter brings the rotations and this usually signals an oppositional revival. Not today! Because we were two players down, this meant that we could leave a little grunt in the middle and when I say little grunt, you know that means Harry! If Sash is tireless, then H is unstoppable, constantly driving us forward. He too would only work one side of the goal umpires body with three snaps for three behinds. Aiden kicked his first at full forward continuing his great year. “Lace Up” was plying his trade with his usual brand of forward pressure and Dylan, Oscar and Oliver were solid in the middle. Jack G kicked his first of two and would go on to win “Rooster of the Week” for his efforts. The half would end without a single forward entry by the Cats thus far. The Niner’s had been clinical.

If they had been up and about pre game, they were maniacal now! 52 up at the half and ready to rumble for two more quarters. Dozer got straight into the play after the bounce with a great mark. Riley was in the ruck and had a cracking second half. He knows how to position himself in this role and was able to get on the end of some great defensive work and mark in the middle and go for a run. Captain Oliver kicked his first ever goal, his elation was priceless, well done mate! Jack P kicked one to almost round out three of our four Jacks kicking goals today. Luca loves the midfield and was everywhere with great kicking to advantage. As does Louis, his ability to find his way in and out of traffic is outstanding.  Archie and Rylan gave great drive off the backline to deny the Cats any chance of scoring; they did however sneak in one behind. The siren would sound with the Niner’s up by a whopping 69 points.

There was some talk in the huddle that maybe we should let them score a goal. What a nice gesture I thought, I wonder if they will. Well I must have confused sentiment for sarcasm as they had no intention of doing any such thing.  Diesel had been busy all day and laid some great text book tackles. Then it was Otto’s turn to mark in the square and goal from a set shot. Riley was unlucky to have a goal overturned (Huh!), this made him more determined and had a great last quarter. Iggy was getting “biggy” and is starting to use his size to out muscle his opponents. Archie roved a ball out of congestion and gave a quick handpass to Jami for his third. It was well and truly over by then. All in all, this was probably the most even team performance across the board and easily the biggest margin. 94 points in the end, outstanding effort! Lets hope that the complacency does not creep back in as we find ourselves up against the big boys in Flemington away from home. Eat well, sleep well and train well Little Red Roosters, we are going to need it!!

Special thanks to Brad and Libby for tending to the wounded, and to everyone who filled the volunteered roles, and to those who cheered us on, we can’t do this without you, it is most appreciated.

Richie and Kane.

 

 

Unders 10’s : Rd 9 vs Hoppers Crossing : Home

Coming off a bye week, a home game and a late start - the trifecta. Certainly nice to start a

game without having to kick the dew off the grass. Thanks Richie.

I have to apologise up front parents - this week and next are pretty big for me. On the work and

home fronts, with some deadlines that are fast closing - so I hope you can permit me to be brief

in this report and I will make it up in my next one.

However, if any parent couldn’t make it, our Under 10’s Roosters managed 26 shoots at goal in

the space of the 60 minutes playing time. Sort of sets the picture. Pleasingly we certainly

rediscovered the big sticks in this match after many weeks with a lot of points. Although the

point yips looked like continuing in the 1st quarter with 2 goals and six points, but after that the

lads really hit their strides and peppered the goals.

A really good team effort with plenty of unselfish acts along the way and it was great to see

them really back each other up. These games our imprinted in my brain for some reason and as

I said, I will extend it out in my next report; their was many outstanding performances and break

out games that need to be acknowledged.

Full marks also to the young Hoppers Crossing team as well as they never stopped trying.

Given a bit more growth and look out.

So next game is another later start. Yea!

10.20 AM on Sunday the 25th. Vs Newport at Newport

See you all there

Des

 

Under 11 Division 2 Round 9

West Footscray vs St. Albans

 

Continuity is important when playing football. We have had 2 weeks off out of the last 3 thanks to the bye and some old duck in England celebrating her birthday on the date which isn’t actually her birthday. Given this it would be hard to gauge just how scratchy the boys would be. Vinh was out with a fractured finger. Aleks was back though. That kind of evened things out. Jack and Cooper were both there. Just as well as they become the latest under 11 players to reach the 50 game milestone. They were awarded the captaincy for the day. St. Albans were a very familiar opponent and this would be our sixth encounter of the previous two seasons. They had touched us up once and we were wary of what they were capable of producing. The weather had made a mockery of the usual seasonal norm and provided us with a beautifully sunny day with very little wind. Perfect football weather.

 

Yash would start the first term in the ruck against the man mountain from St. Albans. He’s a fair lump of a lad. The mountain that is. Not Yash. However Yash can jump and from the opening bounce began to dominate his much larger opponent. The boys had been instructed to play with width, but this wasn’t needed as they tore out of the centre and straight into our forward line. Weston, Cooper and Jack won the ball consistently and drove it forward. Our forward line was bristling with quick and crafty players. Mickey is in the best form of his short career and marked everything that came his way. His leading was brilliant. Angus was busy as well. He is growing in confidence with every game and attacked the ball with intent. St. Albans were under some serious pressure and couldn’t get it back to the middle of the ground. Frank gave them a hand with that by scoring the first of the term and his first of the year. Much deserved after an amazing year so far. From the restart it went straight back forward. A big pack of players had turned our forward line into a scrappy affair. Fear not! Felix would rip the ball from the pack and snap an absolute beauty on his left. Ripping goal Felix! Another bounce and another clearance. This time Jack would be on hand to cash in on his great work in the middle. Given a chance, he rarely disappoints. Bang! 3 goals to zip! Back to the middle again we went. St. Albans were starting to warm up now and drove the pill their way. At least our backs would get a look at it now! Tito took a great goal saving mark in the square to repel them. Samuel was ferocious in his will to clear the ball. He won several crucial clearances. Xavier tackled everything near him in a red and blue jumper. St. Albans were relentless and quickly added 2 goals. Game on! There was no need for panic though as our boys quickly reclaimed the ascendency. Cooper was on fire, both in the middle and around the ground. Weston was amazing with his pin point passing and continually looked to feed it Kadin and Christian who were flying down their wings. A long kick forward would see Jack clunk an absolute cracker at the top of the square. He had two now. Another bounce and once again we stormed forward. Nathaniel was great in the tight packs. His strength was crucial and helped our side immensely. Sean got his hands on it as well. His handballing was great. All this pressure would surely produce a fifth. It did. Elijah Moon was rewarded with his first of the day after some great team play and his forward smarts. Great term Roosters.

 

Quarter Time. West Footscray 5.0.30 St. Albans 2.0.12

Some changes were made for the second. Felix went into the middle and Cooper went to half back. That worked! Cooper mopped up everything down back. Aleks did likewise. Great to have him back this week. Weston, Felix and Jack were being fed the ball at every bounce by Yash who was playing an amazing game in the ruck. Time and time again the ball went forward. Sas was showing his speed in the pocket. He’s a rocket. So is Murphy. He pounced on a loose ball and snapped toward the big sticks. It took a lucky bounce but who cares! They all count! His first and our sixth. Moments later he would get a chance at a second. He didn’t waste it either. Two goals in a couple of minutes! St. Albans were really struggling now. Our half backs were killing them. Once they did look like getting through only to have Kadin run down their player and lay a brilliant tackle. Down the other end Mickey was still leading and marking. Murphy was going for runs. Elijah Moon was working overtime. We would squeeze in one more for the term. Once again it would come off the boot of Jack. He had 3 now. We had eight and St. Albans hadn’t scored for over a quarter. Nice Work.

 

Half Time. West Footscray 8.6.54 vs St. Albans 2.0.12

 

Amidst the frenzy of oranges there was a call of where are the lollies! It’s only half time you clowns and lollies are frowned upon under our new sports science regime. Get with the program guys! Sheesh! With the reality of knowing that they would be forced to go an hour and a bit without confectionary sinking in, they headed back out for the second half. The third would be much like the two previous terms. We were in control. Yash has become a ruck machine and continually fed the ball to our midfielders. They in turn pumped it forward. Our backs were bored and soon some of them would find themselves in our forward line to give them some action. Those that stayed down back made the game impossible for St. Albans. Leroy was tackling as hard as ever. Samuel likewise. Aaron could have had a nap at full back. Wave after wave of Rooster attacks took place. Eventually we would have to get one. Murphy would be the scorer. He had 3 now. Not content with that, we continued to charge forward. Mickey took a great mark but narrowly missed. Felix was killing it in the middle. With Weston and Jack for company, the ball kept flying our way. A couple more missed chances would go by before Elijah Moon pounced on the ball and smacked it to the top of the square. It would clear the pack and produce more bounces that a con-man’s cheque book before turning at right angles and going straight through. He loved it and so did his team mates! Amazing goal Elijah Moon!

 

3 Quarter Time West Footscray 10.10.70 vs St. Albans 2.0.12

 

With the game safely in the bag it was time to swing a few changes. Aleks went into the ruck to give Yash a rest. Aaron went to Centre Half Forward to wake him up and Zach went forward to give us some grunt. I asked for 5 goals in the last. Every time I do this it fails. I don’t know why. I do blame the children for it though! Aleks into the ruck was move of the day. He was brilliant and must have had a dozen kicks in the last.  Aaron marked everything that came near him. Zach was beast like deep in attack and unlucky not to snag his first of the year. Samuel was up the ground now and winning every contest. Frank was on fire in the middle. Murphy could have finished with four or five. He kicked a certain goal straight into the man on the mark from 10 metres out. Moments later he showcased his speed in a ripping dash only to run too far. The sting had now completely gone from the game. Fatigue set in and the game got scrappy. Long kicks were required and Felix would deliver. He smashed it forward to an unguarded goal square where Elijah Moon was waiting. He marked the kick, turned around and pumped it straight through the big sticks. 3 goals for him today was a great result and well-earned as his previous game had been excellent without the reward.

 

Full Time West Footscray 11.13.79 vs St Albans 2.3.15

 

A very good performance against a team we expected to beat. Highlights were the emergence of a few players thanks to their persistence and hard work. The tackling was terrific and our game style is really starting to click and come together. Our next 3 games see us pitted against 3 of the best four teams in the comp (We can’t play ourselves!). We will get the chance to see just how good we are. I know we can do it. Our best is amazing and would frighten any team when confronted with it. I look forward to seeing you frighten them!

 

Damian

 

Rd 9: U13’s West Footscray V Point Cook

After a rest last weekend we journeyed out to Point Cook to discover what challenge they would bring for the Rooster’s. We had a few outs this week, including some of our taller brigade, leaving us with only 17 to start. Some players joined in an unorthodox pre game preparation singing nursery rhymes to Diesels little sister.

 

The opposition were a little unknown as they had been dropped from division 2 recently and can swap other players from their division 1 side when it suits them. They didn’t disappoint as we scanned their line up and realised they were head and shoulders above most of our players – in size only, we had them covered in all other aspects. They also showed no sportsmanship with player numbers so we began one down from the start.

 

Point Cook started well with the breeze and scored first. The Roosters didn’t seem switched on yet – a point made in the pre-match address,maybe the pre-game nursery rhymes didn’t help. Leo was captain today, returning after his heavy knock a few weeks ago, and led fantastically again putting his head over the ball and diving into packs to stop most of their dangerous forwards. Luis also stood up really well to help turn the game back the Roosters way. The game swung up and down the big ground with several points kicked until finally Socrates marked and kicked truly of course. Kailey had started well holding some good overhead marks early, but the challenge was made bigger as he and Liam both hobbled in for the break. We were down 1.4.10 to 2.3.15 and it looked like it might not go the Roosters way today.

 

And so we started the second quarter with only 15 fit players, but the breeze was at our back. Lachlan threw himself into every contest all day. Samuel prowled the half back line and drove us forward many times with his raking left foot. He hit his head on the ground in a heavy tackle and needed a rest in the first quarter but came back on after the break to continue playing a great game. Isaac T returned this week and again stood up across the back line forcing the ball forward. Abdullahi also returned and showed courage all day as well as some magic turns with the ball, just missing a goal today. Speaking of magic, Diesel had the ball on a string today playing mostly off half back. Tackling opponents twice his size he then regularly ran around them after showing them some candy. With our regular rucks injured or absent the responsibility fell to Ben. It was a big job against a tall team but Ben did a great job jumping into every contest. Jonathan showed some of his clean skills again and slowly the score turned back our way, but mostly with points. We turned at the long break ahead 4.9.33 to 2.4.16.

 

A tough third quarter awaited into the breeze. Somehow all the players found the energy to tackle and chase for every ball, desperately holding Point Cook at bay. And when we got our chance still found something extra to run and pass the ball the length of the ground for Lachie to finish a great team goal into the breeze. The spirits were up and the small Roosters crowd were getting loud. Henry continued motoring up and down the ground all day, attacking contests, collecting positions and gaining yards. Nav played another electric game looking dangerous with his speed. He also coped very well with some unnecessary attention before showing them how footy should be played with the ball in his hands. Lenny battled most of the game in the middle winning many hard balls. Point Cook got one back but the Roosters held their lead and were kicking with the breeze in the last.

 

The scribe missed a bit while re-filling water bottles back at the distant change rooms but on returning discovered Henry had kicked the first goal of the last quarter and the game seemed to be going our way. Juma was a force in traffic all game, either down back or when he played midfield – no one got past him when he got hold of them. Isaac C had another good game patrolling his wing and showing some dash. Liam ended up having a good day up forward, despite not being able to walk, kicking 4 including one out of the park (just to wind down the clock he said). Despite being in front we didn’t ease up - Soc desperately knocking the ball across the face for Lachie to volley through the goal of the game. The game finished on a high for the Roosters. Lachlan finished with 3 goals and a very well deserved heartland certificate for his efforts. Roosters of the week were Ben and Socrates for their great team game.

 

It was an excellent game to watch today. The Roosters players seemed up against it but they didn’t give up. They kept contesting every ball and running to help their teammates.  A great win Roosters - you should be really proud of that one!

With the finals around the corner, hard work on the track is going to be required.  It is clear we are now being hunted and with the reverse fixtures from earlier in the season upon us, we need to up our level to stay ahead of the pack.  The more we get to training, the more we can work on some new things to throw at our opponents.

 

 

Thanks also to all the parents supporting on the day, particularly this week helpers: Clayton, Con, Simon M, Liza, Margriet and Michael.

 

Roosters 9. 12. 66 def Point Cook 3. 7. 25

Goals: Liam 4, Lachlan 3, Socrates 1, Henry 1

 

 


Round 8

Round 8 – Away to Yarraville-Seddon Eagles

 

We had a later start this morning at Yarraville Oval on Williamstown Rd

  • Later than planned for some with parking a block away (not in the locked off and empty carpark), busy Williamstown Rd traffic and confusion based on this Teams name.

We got through this all and had close to a full squad today.

Captains for the day were Arlo S-T – maintaining strong efforts while improving his ball skills, and Jake – who has looked to improve his Teamwork while gathering strong possession numbers each week.

 

The Eagles coach mentioned to me that they had a few second year players within their team and they. Were having some good form overall this year.

 

1st Quarter;

Our Roosters and our volunteers (Cathy and Paul as Goal and Field umpires) took their positions.

We were kicking to the Skate Park end – and that is where it headed from the first bounce.

The ball made its way to Oscar inn our forward line , who had a snap at goal – that went wide.  But it was a positive start.

Griffin excited with a spin out of an attempted tackle, Jake (C) made a great smother.

Jacob laid a strong tackle, Oscar took another great mark.

In a great chain of possession – Hugo had a clearing kick out of the centre, Arlo S-T (C) won a free kick for in-the-back, his kick was marked by Malik just outside the goal-square.  His kick fell a bit short and was marked within the flock of Eagles.

We dominated the quarter with possession and field position.  Arlo S-T (C) was unlucky with our best scoring chance as he resisted soccering off the ground, but was then run down and tackled when he took possession of the ball.

 

2nd Quarter;

The Eagles got the jump on us at the start of this quarter (was there a goal scoring end at this ground?) Cathy’s flag waving drew some impressed comments from our spectators.

We were also impressed with our pressure near the ball – Efe and Mitchell were setting the standards.

We had some strong and courageous marks by  Jake (C) and a classy float-across-the-front-of-the-pack mark by Griffin.

We were providing a good contest over the ground and had the ball up our scoring end as the ½ time bell (?) rang.

(Further comments entered by our scribes on the increasing confidence and expressiveness of our Goal Umpire Flag waving)

We done Paul in a fair and even umpiring effort.

 

As we got some citrus energy into us and discussed what was going well and what to improve – we received some insider information.  An Adult Rooster infiltrated the Eagles nest!

“I can tell you that they are concerned about us, they consider us a threat” – well done Adam, you have earned your Rooster feathers.

 

3rd Quarter;

The second became an end-to-end game, continuing a very even game.

(Though I did feel that umpiring calls were not as even as our Paul’s decisions)

Jacob kicked deep towards our goals, Jake (C) and Felix gang tackled, Efe laid his own tackles. Kai met the ball front on and didn't let it past him, Nathaniel tried to knock the ball to our advantage under pressure.

Oscar pumped the ball back into our attacking 50.

Felix finally got space to get a good pass away, as did Mrinal.

Alan and Malik continued our tackling pressure.

Griffin stopped an Eagle in his tracks with a great tackle – and was having none of the pushing that resulted from the Eagle on his back.

Hadi was gaining us ground (as he always does) in close before getting off his handballs.

Hugo finished the quarter with the a good mark.

 

4th Quarter;

The game was close on the field, with a couple of goals lead to the Eagles on the scoreboard.

Hadi won himself some free kicks, Arlo S-T made a valiant effort in stopping a goal.

Efe had a good kick out of our defensive pocket, Kai contributing all over the ground.

Mitchell laid a good tackle and won a free kick, Arlo M had a good kick out on the wing.

Mrinal kicked the ball well, along the boundary in defence.

Eli took a great mark, Sophia got the ball out of the pack and Alex had repeated defensive efforts in our defensive pocket..

 

A couple of junk—time goals were scored by the Eagles – as our Roosters eventually tired from their huge efforts today.

We are close to winning one of these games – against an experienced team.

 

Special Mentions;

Heartland Award - Hadi El-hodr for showing drive and determination to get the ball going our way.

Jake Miller (C) raised. His game and improved his Teamwork.

Arlo S-T (C) had his most complete game and was unlucky t to get his goal.

 

Thankyou;

Monique – for getting us set up before you went out.

Cathy -  obviously enjoyed the flag waving

Paul – you were fair an consistent with your field umpiring.

Water carriers. -  I’m glad you enjoyed being closer to the action .

All our other volunteers

Scribes – your notes and input really do help (you notice things don’t)

Paparazzi- I look forward to seeing your photos.

 

To work on next week;

Spread when we have the ball

Move the ball quickly.

 

 

I thoroughly enjoyed the effort,  the contest and our progress today.

See you at training (Wednesday only this week and a weekend off also)

Cheers,

Paul

 

WEST FOOTSCRAY ROOSTERS - Under 9 Reds vs. Sunshine – Round Eight - 4/6/17.

Good Evening Sports Fans.

It would be a cold start! Icy windows greeted all and sundry as The Little Red Roosters were back on the road again with the Niner’s bus rolling down Ballarat rd. for a date with the Sunshine Kangaroo’s. For those of you who followed us last year you would have remembered that the Niner’s played in an historic night match under Friday Night Lights against a previously undefeated Kangas in our last game of the season. The Niner’s would prevail by the slimmest of margins that night so we were expecting a tight, contested game and more than likely a little bit of revenge for ruining what could have been a perfect season for them. Local folklore would suggest that Sunshine has a heavy rep but the ground could not have been more picture perfect and bathed in glorious winter sun.  The words “Lock Up” crudely painted on the away rooms door would suggest otherwise though and I wondered what was in store.

Today would see the full squad together for the very first time; 25 uncaged Roosters intent on reversing last weeks defeat. So intent in fact, that we were all out on the ground before we had even sighted a single kangaroo. They seemed to be taking their time…. my mind started to wander. Were they all in the change rooms plotting our down fall for last years blight on their record…… yes, yes, they must be….Oh, wait here they come.

Todays Captains would be Jackson and Max, we lost the toss and we were kicking to the right. And that is where the ball went, to the right, again and again and again. Archie would snap the first. Jami got on the end of a beautiful pass from Howe Diddy to mark and kick the second. Harry would rove and snap the third. Three great goals married with six great behinds! It was quite a dominant display. Max ‘more than a’ Phelan ruled the midfield, dodging and weaving in what is becoming his trademark. Jackson, Jack P and Iggy were all taking care of business. Archer is really starting to find his feet and getting his hands on it too. The Kangas were good enough to stem the tide for one of their own, but found themselves a few behind at quarter time.

Our game plan is a fairly simple one. Hit the scoreboard hard early and then try and sustain the heat as we get some midfield experience into our younger Roosters. Each week our youngest bantams tough it out and each week they get a little bit better. Dylan found himself amongst it in the second and third and copped and old fashioned finger breaker in a marking attempt. Clearly distressed he shook it off but stayed on. Well done mate! This spirit typifies our young Roosters. Riley had rucking duties and had another tough game; Oscar was on the ball as was Lace up Lacey who was rotating in the midfield with Oliver. Aiden was showing his flair as was Clara and Dasher as his apt nickname would suggest was doing what he does best. Louis had a cracker in the middle, regularly going for a run and driving the ball forward, always looking for teammates to pass to. He would go on to win the Heartland for his performance today and rightly so. Luca had a ripper at full back and was on the line to mark what could have been an easy goal for them and sent the ball back to where it came from. Not only a great effort but thanks for listening mate!! In a carbon copy of last week though, the Kangas would pile on five but pleasingly, we managed to peg back a couple. Jack G kicked one out of goal square congestion and Howe Diddy’s class shone through when he marked and goaled from a set shot, which left us a point shy at the main break. Well done Niner’s, a very even half of footy.

The déjà vu would continue in the third, with the Roosters shutting down the Kangas just as they did last week in what is becoming the “third quarter grind”. Neither team took control however both managed to kick one each.  Ours came from the boot of Diesel with a banana from the boundary if you don’t mind! It even got praise from my opposite coach who cheered as it went through!  Theirs was fortuitous as Raz was unlucky when he slipped over when he scrambled back to get a loose ball which ambled through. Scores would be level at the last break.

The simple game plan continued in the last with some experience back in the engine room. Last week we were wasteful in front of goals and fell short, I was hoping that the trend would not continue. Once again we were dominant and did not let the Kangas passed centre half forward. Howe Diddy, Dasher and Captain Max swept the half back line to gleaming shine and left no trace of any forward entries. Archie layed two great smothers and took a nice contested grab. Rylan took control in the ruck, Abby and Iggy ruled the wings. Dozer copped a nasty bump that flipped him over and twisted his knee but just like Dylan earlier, he shook it off and continued with his game. Clara and Otto were creating good forward pressure which was just enough for Harry to kick his second goal of the game which put us in front. A couple more behinds would be all we needed for another tough it out game of footy. We got back the eight points we lost last week but I would love to know what we could do if we took our time and kicked a bit straighter! Congratulations to Clara for being our first “Rooster of the Week” as she continues on with her breakout season. Well done Mullaly’s for taking home both of the awards today.

We all get this week off as we honour the Queen and her contribution to Australian Rules Football. Thanks Queenie!

Special thanks to Brad for tending to the wounded, busy day mate, and to everyone who filled the volunteered roles, and to those who cheered us on away from home, we can’t do this without you, it is most appreciated.

Richie and Kane.

 

 

 

Who remembers the movie Spotswood?

 

This 1992 flick exploring the working conditions in a 1960s moccasin factory had nothing on the drama that unfolded at McLean Reserve on Sunday morning.

 

The day began ominously with the first appearance of windscreen frost for the year.  It was freezing.  Sunny, but freezing.  The mid-season lull hit hard and there were 4 late withdrawals from the side, leaving us with 18 and no interchange.

 

At 8.15 Des led the side out for the warm-up onto ice-encrusted grass.  Or should I say half the side.  The other half stayed inside with jackets on, declaring it was “too cold to warm up”.  I considered launching into a lecture on thermodynamics and its relationship to exercise physiology, but instead opted for my best mum-of-boys ‘glare and point’.  Outside, Des did his best to corral the troops and gee up some enthusiasm for the battle ahead.

 

As the siren sounded to begin the game it was obvious the boys from Spotty had set their alarms a little earlier than ours and they were ready and raring to go.  Our boys were jumped early and before we knew it Spotswood were several goals up.  This set the tone for the rest of the game where we worked hard to catch up but just couldn’t quite get there, and once Spotty had a taste of revenge from their Round 1 loss, they ran away with it.

 

I don’t really want to say much about this game, for a couple of reasons.  Mainly, I was distracted for most of it and couldn’t take in most of the play.  That which I did see was very chaotic and not always pleasant to watch.  If anyone who was there wants to add more by way of individual highlights please feel free to do so in the comments section.  But I want to say this.

 

Kiir won the heartland award for his lion-hearted courage and fierce determination, as well as his absolute commitment to back up his team-mates.  It was thoroughly deserved.  But it also sums up the way our boys approached the game.  Although slow to get started, once they did they worked extremely hard, tackled ferociously, chased down every ball and looked after each other.  Forget the scoreboard, they played as a team with the strong desire to play for one another and their coach.  There’s a reason there is no official score in Under 10s, no ladder, no best and fairest, no statistical analysis.  It’s because the aim of junior football is to develop in our children sportsmanship and a sense of hard work and fair play.  Our boys showed they had this in spades.

 

This crew have all worked extremely hard at training and for 8 games – and in that I include Des and all our parents who have chipped in to help.  We’ve all earned a week off to rest and recharge the batteries.

 

Andrea

 

 

 

UNDER 11 ROUND 8

FLEMINGTON vs WEST FOOTSCRAY

 

Theories abound as to the effect of a bye on football teams. Some say the break helps players to freshen up, whilst others believe it is often the cause of a loss directly after one. Opinions are split 50/50, as are the results of teams in this situation. My point is that if you are considering doing your thesis on this topic, you would be best to find another topic for a number of reasons. The most notable being that your research would have zero benefit to mankind. In fact I only raised the theory to pad out the opening of this match report. You should write your thesis on why I would bother doing that.

 

As you may or may not be aware, the Under 11 Roosters were coming off a bye. We would have a full squad to choose from with the exception of Aleks. Big shoes to fill down back against an opponent we knew very little about other than the fact they sat fourth on the ladder. They must be alright. It was a momentous occasion for the 11s as one of their own would be the first to the prestigious 50 game club. Murphy had pipped a couple of his team mates to the milestone by a week and was rewarded with the captaincy. A second captain was needed. “Who hasn’t done it yet”? All of them apparently! Nice try boys. Elijah Moon got the nod. Last minute instructions were given and players in new unfamiliar roles were given encouragement.  You’re all guns! You’ve so got this! Late arrivals were banished to the pine. Be warned parents! They won’t complain to me about it for the rest of the weekend!

 

The ump tossed it up and we were away. Yash is being trialled in the ruck and won the first tap. Nice start Yash. The opening few minutes were a bit of a see-sawing affair with both sides trying to gain the ascendency. Weston was in everything as per usual. Jack was looking assured around the packs unlike his attempts to put on his elastic headband pre-game. Cooper had the job at centre half back in the absence of Aleks and was mopping up everything that came his way. The magnetic lure of the football was thwarting our plan to use the width of and space available to exploit our opponents. Having said that, our link up play was warming up and it wouldn’t be long until we nailed one. Jack would be the first to score a major. Flemington had their moments though. They managed several forward raids. These were snuffed out with some fine defensive work. Aaron has been locked in at full back for the rest of the year. He took marks and cleared the ball well. Looks like we got that right. Samuel was outstanding down back. His attack on the ball was first class and willingness to shepherd for his team mates was brilliant. Xavier tackled hard and slowed Flemington down. Zach did likewise. These two have been awesome this year. Tito was busy down back as well. Try as they might, Flemington could only manage three behinds as we began to clear the ball with a little more ease. When we did get it out we were moving it quicker now. Yash was competing brilliantly in the ruck, but also giving us lots of run when we had it playing as a midfielder when the ball it the ground. Late in the first a long kick to our goal square would clear the pack where Murphy was waiting. He’s pretty handy around the goals and was never going to miss this opportunity. Bang! A goal in his 50th and 17 pats on the head to go with it!

 

Quarter time Flemington 0.3.3 West Footscray 2.1.13

 

The team plan was reinforced at the break and a few tweaks and observations passed to the Roosters. Kadin was on the wing now as had been planned all week. He had his reservations about it. We didn’t! Felix was injected into the midfield to add some pace and zip. From the first bounce it was apparent to all at the ground that they had listened and were keen to implement the instructions. We were red hot! Felix was a machine. Winning the ball constantly and tackling like a maniac when he didn’t have it. Christian was flying down his wing. He knows when to take off and constantly had the ball in space. Kadin was dominating his wing. He had just as much time and space and was devastating with the ball in hand. He continually got on the end of Weston’s hard work and drove it forward. It didn’t take long for Jack to snag his second of the day. Not long after Murphy ran onto the pill at top speed with time and space to burn. That only results in one thing folks. His second of the day. Flemington couldn’t get beyond their 50. Frank was playing his finest game yet on half back. He cleared it countless times. Leroy had the other flank covered and did likewise. Vinh was awesome in tight and fed his team mates with quick, precise hand balls. The running game we wanted was really starting to click. Christian was a big part of this. His run down the left wing was rewarded with a goal after some fine team play and a beautiful kick on the run. Nathaniel and Elijah Moon were proving to be big targets down forward. They attracted the ball constantly. Sean was leading nicely and creating options. Angus almost clunked a beauty. Mickey was working his butt off down forward. He moves nicely. A great lead with clean hands. This worried his opponent and drew a free kick. After missing one in the previous game from an identical spot Mickey might have been nervous. You wouldn’t know it though as he calmly slotted his first and our fourth of the term. Great football Roosters.

 

Half Time Flemington 2.3.15 West Footscray 6.2.38

 

It’s hard to know whether these boys really like oranges or would prefer not to hear me talk. The oranges were certainly their number one priority at the long break. Eventually we ran out of oranges and I could talk to them. A few more subtle tweaks were all that were needed so it was probably a good thing we had loads of oranges. Yash was still killing it in the ruck. Weston must have had thirty touches by now. We can’t say for sure as his old man was doing the water today and most likely unable to count them. Weston continually fed his team mates possessions. Kadin was playing the game of his life. Dancing through traffic and always taking the right option. (Who hates the wing now mate?). Frank was a machine and kick started the play of the day which saw the ball fly down our wing through a chain of handballs and kicks. It quickly found itself just in front of Murphy and his opponent in what loomed as a battle of leg speed. Murphy torched him, gathered the ball and delivered an absolute bullet to Mickey who had led perfectly toward him. Mickey launched horizontally and grabbed the rocket pass as if his hinds were covered in honey. He went back and snagged his second. We now had total control of the game. Flemington had dropped and extra defender back to stem the flow, but this had little effect. It probably backfired, as it left Frank to do as he pleased at half back. It pleased Frank to win the ball and pump it forward again! Samuel was continuing his outstanding day down back. He was impassable. Cooper continued to deliver the ball safely into his fellow Roosters hands. Christian was flying. Vinh was a wall. Felix looked dangerous down forward. Jack was playing a blinder and his hard running would result in his third of the game. He doesn’t miss too many. Felix was everywhere. His feverish assault on the ball was awesome. He too would get a goal and would celebrate with a “dab”.  A great quarter and a real team effort.

 

3 quarter time Flemington 2.4.16 West Footscray 9.3.57

 

The game was safely in the bag at 3 quarter time. Our ladder is tight and percentage will be crucial leading into the finals. I asked for four goals in the last. Jack decided it should be 8. Who am I to argue? It wasn’t long to wait before they got their first. Felix was back in the middle and continuing his brilliant game. Felix likes a goal likes a goal and bagged his second early in the last. He also notched his second dab of the game. A club imposed sanction awaits! The resistance from Flemington was fading fast. Our ball movement had worn them down and now was barely impeded. Nathaniel has embraced his role at full forward. He has strength and size on his side and is an obvious target for the long kick forward. His defender was worried by this and gave away a free kick. Nathaniel doesn’t miss too often and slotted his first for the day. Elijah Moon was attracting plenty of the ball as well in the pocket. His movement and use of the available space was great. Sasmitha was looking pretty lively as well. His shot at goal on the run looked certain to go in, only to be stopped right on the line. Murphy was full of beans still. His speed and movement saw him continue to get plenty of it. Jack was still flying as well. He collected his fourth of the day midway through the last. 8 goals looked a real possibility for the term. Kadin joined in the party soon after with a silky finish. His first of the day and much deserved. Yash didn’t look tired at all after an entire game in the middle. His ruck work was great, his  ground work and effort even greater. The ball lived in our forward half of the ground. Our boys were constantly driving it forward. We would ultimately fall short of the 8 goals Jack wanted for the team. He would however get his fifth of the game and our fifth of the term. This proves two things. Jack played a brilliant game and I’m a far better judge of our team’s capabilities than he is!

 

Full Time Flemington 2.5.17 West Footscray 14.4.88

 

A great effort by my Under 11 boys. Every single one of you did your job and did it well. You played the way Andrew and I want you to play. Your run, team play and use of space was brilliant. This will only get better in the coming games as we better come to grips with the plan. I know I’ve told you a hundred times but……………………. If we get his right, I am yet to see a team that we aren’t capable of beating. That’s an exciting prospect for us. I am also certain that with a little bit more polish and the effort you displayed on Sunday I will ultimately be proved right.

 

Damian

 

Round 8 v Hoppers Crossing

 

Making the trip down the highway with less than a full complement to Hogan’s Road presented a number of challenges – where Hogan’s Road actually is, was probably the biggest. After a few late arrivals, we took the field with 17.  Hoppers obliged and took the field with 17 also.  Henry was our skipper today – and what a leader he turned out to be! Waltzing off with the Heartland was just reward for a boy on the lemon teas in the morning who became a running machine in the afternoon (is anyone surprised?).  Hoppers got the jump scoring a goal within a minute courtesy of an easy clearance and a couple of uncontested marks – something that was highlighted at the quarter time interval.  Not to be outdone, the Rooster juggernaut clicked into 2nd gear (only 2nd – due to the fact we kicked 5 behinds before registering our first goal).  A little bit of selfish footy and a refusal to open the vision being the root cause.  However, this proved to be temporary as Kailey, together with Juma, Daniel and Jonathon rolled up their sleeves in the middle and force fed Soc and Diesel to such an extent, it was almost impossible not to register a few majors.  Liam, bobbing up with Samuel and Bailey caused all sorts of grief for the 7-man defensive line of our hosts.  Henry and Isaac C had it all their own way on the wing and when the first quarter had ended, normal transmission had resumed.

 

The second quarter saw the usual magnet shuffle with Lenny and Lachie up around the footy, Zidane giving Kailey a breather and Ben given an opportunity to continue his development as a tall, running wingman. Our defenders got themselves sorted out – Luis, Nav (until he moved up into the middle) and Samuel had the opportunity to make their mark.  The creative play coming out of half back and through our midfield is really something to admire.  Apart from a few little fumbles, time and time again the Red and Whites pumped the footy forward.  Credit to the mids and half forwards for allowing the forward line first crack at setting up our scoring shots.  The boys have been told that we need to shoot from the corridor – and the willingness to bring the ball back into the top of the square was rewarded time and time again with West taking a healthy lead into the half time break.

 

The home side were getting fed up with the wave and wave of Rooster offence, that unsurprisingly, they reverted to some old-school tactics. This drew out the mantra of ‘more discipline’ – much in the manner Peter from Peterborough would demand (those of you who are regular listeners of 774 on a Saturday morning would understand).  To our credit, the third and last quarters remained full focus footy and by the time the final siren rang, another complete performance saw the home side thankful to be put out of their misery.  Liam and Jonathon particularly enjoyed feasting on the Hoppers Crossing carcass with 6 and 5 goals respectively.  Juma and Bailey got involved in the forward line, with Bailey registering 3 behinds… still waiting for that goal, whilst Juma registered a major deep in the last quarter.

 

Special shout out to our band of mids – Kailey and Zidane proving to be the most mobile and skilful big men in the comp (all-Australian honours beckon – or maybe all-wrfl U13 Div 3 honours?). Lenny continues to play a ‘team first’ brand of footy that will ultimately see him become a much better footballer.  Diesel improves every week and his close to the ground skills often leave much taller opponents clutching thin air.  Lachie and Luis keep on keeping on – providing handy contributions with an uncanny knack of finding the footy – and their refusal to yield in the face of bigger opponents is a pleasure to watch.  Nav, Samuel and Henry are the cream – smooth movers that rarely lose a one-on-one and hardly waste a possession.

 

A great first half of the season – and a well-earned bye awaits us this week. The business end will soon be upon us and many more tough challenges await this eager and keen to learn Rooster outfit.  Hard work will be the order on the training track and we all look forward to what the next few months bring.

 

Great effort from the parent volunteer group again – Simon R in goals, Yenni on medical duties, Liza on water, Briohny on the clock, Con with security, Simon M with fruit and Arjuna on boundary for the first time. Kudos to you all and as a reward you can all have next weekend off.

 

Final Score: West Footscray 28 15 183 def Hoppers Crossing 2 1 13

 

Goals: Liam 6, Jonathon 5, Soc 4, Nav 3, Kailey 2, Henry 2, Diesel 2, Lachie 2, Juma 1, Samuel 1


Round 7

WEST FOOTSCRAY ROOSTERS – Under 9 Reds vs. St Bernard’s - Round Seven – 29/5/17.

“Adjacent to Complacent”

The Niner’s bus had not moved all week. It had stayed parked at Shorten Reserve for another luxurious Sunday morning 10:20 start. The deck chairs and umbrellas were being packed up as the Nines Blues took to the field and the Coop was boisterous to say the least. The impending bad weather had come through that night and although we were expecting more, the sun was shining, albeit with a strong breeze to the city end come first bounce.

It’s just a given that sides from north of the border are good units. They are usually very well drilled, competitive and skilful. St. Bernard’s would be no different. For those of you who follow the Reds, the Niner’s had been hot with four on the trot. Their confidence is growing but hopefully not to the detriment of their commitment. They had been a curious bunch at training this week. At times brilliant but for most part a bit too much talkin’ and not enough walkin’ if you know what I mean! You could sense it at warm up too; overhead handballs and general monkey shines were the order of the day. There is not a lot you can do at this point but hope for the best and let the white line fever take over.

Our Captains for the day would be Louis and Luca; we won the toss and were kicking with the breeze. Our first quarter structure is pretty solid. After a sluggish start with no side able to gain ascendancy, the reds put the foot down and clicked into top gear. Iggy, Harry and Jack G were all busy early creating good forward pressure. The drought would be broken when Harry swooped on a loose ball to kick the first goal. Max ‘more than a’ Phelan layed some great tackles and kept it in our forward fifty for most part. Aiden, who is having a great season was rock solid in defence as was Riley and Sash was providing his usual dash. Play of the day happened early for me. The ball had been kicked long into our forward line from the flank which sailed over the head of a lone St.B’s defender who turned and gave chase. To say he was not the quickest of defenders would be an understatement. In a scene reminiscent of an Attenborough doco, Jami, sensing a quick kill, ran his guts out to not only pass, but to gather, turn and snap the goal in a fantastic solo effort. The little maestro would kick two for the quarter. Raz would also snap a terrific goal to give us four for the term. St.B’s also managed one, but we had a pretty handy lead at the first break. Huh! Maybe we don’t need to train…..!

As per usual, the second quarter would bring the rotations and soon enough St.B’s were pegging us back. Riley was in the ruck and using his attack on the ball to muscle his way through. Luca was getting his hands on it and Clara, who each week does that little bit more was brilliant. She would use her pace to great advantage today to scoot away from the packs and was unlucky to be pinged for too far.  Oliver, Dylan and Oscar battled hard and Lace up Lacey lays tackles every week; I love the smirk on his dial when he lands another big fish! Louis, Diesel and Archer were also in and amongst it but St.B’s had the goods. Five of them in fact as they used great run and carry to kick five unanswered goals in a dominant display of under 9’s footy. The frustrations started to creep in and it dawned on our Roosters, that you only get back what you put in. Oh! Maybe we do need to train….!

A little refreshed, and a little more determined, the third quarter was a dour struggle. There was no easy ball to get and both sides were hard at it. Otto, Harry and Dozer all took great marks and we seemed a lot more settled. Clara and Luca were again busy as were Rylan and Archer. Jack P played his best quarter so far but we could just not convert. No side would score in a tough and tight contest.

We knew we could win this, they out played us in the second but we held them in the third and we know we can run out games. We stuck to last week’s set up and we dominated. Otto took a pack grab and Harry launched himself to rise above everyone to take a chest mark of the year if you don’t mind! Rylan was in the ruck and taking control. Archie was on the ball and did his best to keep peppering it to the goal line and took a great grab running back with the flight. Howe Diddy once again played the sweeper role to perfection and did not let it past the centre square. It was frenetic. St.B’s were under enormous pressure and were hanging tough. Abby was in it Harry was in it, Jami was in it, they were all in it. But for all the effort and hard work, we kicked six behinds and ultimately reaped what we sowed; eight points shy in another epic struggle.

The Niner’s bus rolls out of town this week, down the road to Sunshine and we know from past experience that they too are an ornery bunch. Eat well, sleep well and train well Little Red Roosters, we are going to need it!

Special Thanks to Libby and Brad for tending to the wounded and to those who filled the volunteered roles and to those who cheered us on, we can’t do this without you, it is most appreciated.

Richie + Kane.

 

Round 7 – Home to Williamstown Juniors

 

This week we had the early start at our Home Ground – being at Home always raises the excitement levels.

We were keen to improve on last week, where we were shown up a bit by a second year team that was able to pass the ball through and around us.

Our captains today; Arlo M and Maya.

 

1st Quarter

Miles was in the Ruck, he and Alan set the early standards for effort at the ball.

The ball quickly made bits way to the Williamstown end.

Jacob ripped the ball out of his opponents arms, Mrinal made an excellent smother and clearance.

When we won the ball, we were unable to find Team-mates in the open to clear the Williamstown scoring 50.

Alan again was inspirational with a 3-repeated-effort to tackle and stop their ball movement.

Jake took a good mark in defence.  His kick out came to Hadi – who took an excellent mark under pressure.

Jacob and Jake took more good marks, but still we struggled to get the ball our side of centre.

Hadi again was brave under a high ball, Malik smothered a much bigger players kick.

All in all – a good defensive effort by our Roosters – just missing some options to pass to on the way forward.

If we were scoring; it would have been a handful of points to Willy, donuts to the Roosters.

 

2nd Quarter

From the first bounce, Williamstown had several clean possessions.  The ball got into their goal-square.  After a bit of a scramble, a soccer-off-the-ground goal to Willy.

Quick fire passing to open players gave Willy another 2 goals before we knew what had happened.  Williamstown had a big lad (who barely left their goal-square) was just untangle-able by our galant defence.

Bastien was having maybe his best game – diving on the ball, making great tackles.

Maya (C) was trying hard again – setting good teamwork standards.

After improving his re-start kick-offs, Kai became our first wounded soldier as the speed and intensity of the game went up a notch.

It was an even contest around the ball, but when Willy won it out – they had players a kick away in the clear.  When we won the ball – often there was no one forward to kick to (doh!)

Miles, Arlo S-T were around the ball, Arlo M (C) was trying hard – as everyone was.

Bastien again did well holding the ball up against 2 opponents, till his Team-mates arrived.

We didn't deserve to have a fourth goal – via a lucky bounce, scored against us.

 

3rd Quarter

We had a half-time talk about getting reward for our efforts by providing options a kick distance forward of the ball, spreading out, helping each other and linking up.  Look for our marking options and get  our numbers around them.

I was impressed with the steely resolve to play better, no-one had dropped their head after the last quarter, though there was some more wounded soldiers.

Some Vitamin C later, we were out with our socks pulled up.

 

There was again our strong efforts, but now we were moving the ball.  In fact I cannot remember a game that covered as much of the oval as this one.

Jake-Griffin-Efe-Nathaniel made a great play through the middle of the ground.

Oscar was starting to get into the game by staying wide of the ball a short distance.

Malik, Eli, Felix and Arlo M (C) were getting touches.

Malik on the ball this quarter was good, Maya’s (C) efforts continued.

Mitchell was now getting possessions in better parts of the ground.

Nathaniel and Griffin played a great 1-2 and Griffin launched another attack.

Arlo S-T stretched himself to reach and touch the ball defending the Williamstown goal-line.

 

The scoring had dried right up now.  It was end-to-end footy.

 

4th Quarter

This quarter continued in the vein of the 3rd – it was very even, the ball covered a lot of ground and their wasn't much scoring.  Considering how the game had started – we could consider this a small win to the Roosters.

We finished the game with many sore bodies, not much of a score, but some great pride in fighting against the tide and evening up the game.

 

This was the second week that we came up against a team that had played the year before.

Their positioning and then ability to pass the ball around is something we can learn from, to improve our own game.

Our efforts increased in each quarter, which evened up the game - and considering these efforts weren't being rewarded on the scoreboard – this makes me extra proud of the whole Team.

 

Special Mentions;

Bastien – played his most competitive game.

Jake and Griffin – were winning a lot of ball.  Griffin got a shout-out from the Williamstown Coach at the end of the game.

Hadi – 2 very brave efforts under high balls with players bearing down, one of which he pulled in for a mark.

 

Things I loved;

The attitude and dedication to the cause of All of our Roosters today.

Different players each week are having their best game of the season.

 

Things to work on;

2 players only in at the ball

Staying a kick distance away to provide a pass option.

 

Thankyou again to Monique, Ash, Paul and all our Water-carriers, First-Anders, Umpire Escorts, Goal Umpires, Vitamin C suppliers, Cheer-squad, Paparazzi

  • Everyones efforts help our players actually get to play.

 

See you at Training,

Mighty Under 10’s vs Flemington: Away: (3 times in a row….mmmmm) So we reached the halfway point on our 2017 season and fittingly these young lads played their best team game so far. After some recent near misses It was inspiring to witness their collective belief and willingness to help each other, blossom the longer the game went on. The voice and encouragement was the loudest I have heard from these Rooster 10’s and a good indicator of what we can expect in the remaining 7 games. A number of the lads also played their best game this year but more pleasing was that when it was their turn to ‘go’, every single player went without hesitation. You cannot ask for more than that.

Captains for the day were Kiir & Joharo. Kiir started in the ruck and dominated around the ground with his pressure and clearance work. Nothing stands in his way and his repeat efforts were outstanding. Kiir played his best game this year. Joharo too was in & amongst it, making some big tackles and winning the ball in close and handballing it out to his runners. With his repeat efforts it was also Joharo’s best pressure game over four quarters. Well done Captains.

The 1st quarter started evenly for both sides with the ball pinging up and back without a lot of scoring. Flemington threatened to break away towards the end of the quarter but some oustanding pressure from across the team halted them at critical times. Ezekiel who is building his game nicely, took his pressure to another level. Ezekiel gave his all and played with passion; I look forward to him extending this further. Nicholas also fits these words and played his best pressure game so far. I still remember his repeat efforts on the wing in the 3rd quarter where he put in 5 repeat efforts in short succession and was rewarded for his persistence. Once Nicholas locks on, your gone! Noah starting at CHF made his presence felt and his kicking throughout the game was outstanding. Noah became a focal point up forward and it was also pleasing to see him hunting the opposition down with crucial tackles to lock the ball into our forward half. Manny started in the back line and was resolute in his attack on the ball all day. Manny unfortunately spent some unplanned time on the bench with mouth guard issues but returned to kick a vital goal in the last and was another who played his best game for the 10’s.

Hamish moved into the ruck in the ruck in the 2nd Q and followed up his good season with another strong game, dominating on the inside and providing the run and link up. Marlon moved to the centre and was outstanding in finding the right position at the right time. Marlon took his game to another level and it was great to see him rewarded for his hard work at training and on game days. Rory came off the bench and immediately made his impact. Rory reads the play well and made a number of critical clearances when Flemington threatened and he is always cool under pressure. Patrick followed up his run from the backline in the 1st quarter with more run and movement in the forward line. Patrick is constantly putting himself into the right positions and is close to that break out game. Thomas was another who played his best game this year. Providing his usual run and link up, Thomas really threw himself into the contests laying some big tackles and stripping the ball off his opponent which proved critical in the end. Ziggy after a strong 1st quarter in the forward line, shifted to Fullback and dominated his opponent who had looked dangerous prior to this. Ziggy knows when to back himself and leave his opponent. At halftime it was 1 goal vs 2, in Flemington's favour.

By the 3rd quarter these young Roosters had withstood all Flemington had to throw at them and they were ready to strike back. Leo shifted to CHF and was instrumental in locking the ball into our forward half with his run and inside work. It was great to hear Leo provide leadership and encouragement, driving his teammates on. Tem moved into the forward and played his best pressure game so far. Tem’s 3rd, 4th & 5th repeat efforts were outstanding and it was great to see him take his game to another level. Flynn always his gives his all and Sunday was no exception. Flynn combines his strong will with the ability to put himself in the right positions at crucial times and knows how to land the big tackle that saps the opposition. Ash now moved into the ruck and provided the drive we needed around the ground. Combining his long kicking and marking, Ash played a vital role in our domination of the 2nd half, and he was unlucky not to be rewarded with multiple goals. Zaw Zaw has some fantastic allround skills and vision. This week it was great to see him use these skills to bring his teammates into the game with some clever tap ons and kicks that favored the Roosters. He followed this up with strong last quarter in defence. After dominating the quarter we were unlucky not to have more goals on the board with 3 gettable set shots off target, but to the team's credit, they didn’t drop their heads, but willed themselves onto the next contest.

By the 4th quarter these young Roosters were now in overdrive and ready to inspire. They again dominated the quarter and were again unlucky not to score more. Something we need to work on. Will moved into the midfield and played an outstanding last quarter. His run went up a few gears and he just knows how to cut through traffic with some slick evasion and is close to a breakout game. Reuben had dominated all game, copping a few unmissed high ones along the way. But Reuben always finds a way to lift himself into the next contest and he simply out run all his opponents. Elijah was absolutely on fire, particularly in the 2nd half. Elijah had been training well and I knew he was close to a breakout game, so it was great to see him rewarded for all his hard work and will. Bottle that feeling Elijah. Benny has played many a good game for the Roosters but this was the best I have seen. His run, positioning and timing were outstanding and he constantly put his body on the line and was our deserved Heartland winner.

After a couple of narrow misses these young Roosters really showed their collective mettle against Flemington. Now on the homeward stretch we look forward to taking this further on our return bouts. Well done Roosters.

Thanks to all those who volunteered for the day - Zoran, Craig,Tania, Anton, Carol, & Tania. And of course Andrea. Without you all it simply isn’t possible, so a big thank you. See at the next one. P.S. Bye round after our next game. (June 11th) Yeaaaa!

Next Game: Rd 8: vs Spotswood: AWAY: 8:50 AM / Sun 4 Jun McLean Reserve (Ovals 1) The Avenue SPOTSWOOD 3015

 

Roosters under 13s match report v Caroline Springs, 28 May 2017

There was plenty to look forward to with this top-four contest, with Caroline Springs having only dropped a couple of games so far. The coaches were nervous mid-week with news that a couple of our key players were unavailable: Navindu and Alex Q. But the fixturing gods were smiling on us, as the under 11s had a bye. Damian reckons it took about 5 seconds for three parents to say yes when approached about their under 11 stripling having a crack in the older grade. So we welcomed Murphy Lockwood, Jack Gerardi and Weston Barker in to the 13s fold.

True football weather had returned, with an Antarctic blast hitting in the final term – more on that later. The game started ahead of time, prompted in part by the weather radar. It meant your dutiful correspondent almost missed the first goal – an excellent snap by the leading goal-kicker in the under 13C’s, Socrates. I’ve got no idea who won it out of the middle but it looked like Lachlan helped to bring about this 6-0 start. The red Roosters had the benefit of a strengthening wind.

A scrappy affair ensued before Zidane provided the highlight of the term, an astonishing run down the grandstand wing, with a couple of bounces and a Jonah-Lomu inspired run-through of a decent-sized C Springer. While it didn’t result in a goal, the scramble kick out of defence was intercepted by Liam who found debutant Jack Gerardi for a very nice goal. If you keep reading this report you’ll appreciate that Jack certainly knows where the goals are.

West started the game on the bench, but was injected in to the game half way through the first quarter. He immediately got a touch, then another, and another, covering the ground really well. Lenny got it on to Soc who tried to give off a goal, but a point resulted. He then tried the dish-off again, this time to Jonathan who snuck one home through the big sticks. Kailey was prominent in the ruck, and Samuel let fly with three bullet passes from his strong right foot which literally nearly knocked his teammates over. He was kicking with a hefty wind, too. Leo, Juma and Isaac T applied some crucial pressure and tackles in defence, and by quarter time we were three goals up, but with a big task to defend against the wind.

Caroline Springs have some fine players. #10 is small and very skillful, #5 is very strong and quick, but fortunately for us wasn’t the best kick of the Sherrin, #18 was terrific in defence all day, and #30 and 40 ran hard in to space for much of the game. Diesel loved the challenge of playing in to the wind, taking it upon himself to grab the pill and take off on electrifying runs right in front of the coaches. He then lined up the big sticks and proceeded to kick them straight to #18 from C spring. Undeterred, Diesel followed up, got it on to Soc who centred beautifully to Luis who went back and kicked truly (with a perfect ball-drop, I might add…) The C Springers quickly ran the ball up the other end for a good goal, and the contest was red hot. Ben Murphy got his running game going from the wing, which would prove vital as the match wore on. He got the ball down to Jack Gerardi, who earned a free kick and slotted home the goal – a huge one in the context of the game. Liam won a crucial next centre bounce, spotting up Socrates on the lead, who then happily received a 20m penalty and kicked truly on his glorious Greek left foot – no sign of an Achilles heel there, Soc. #29 from the C Springers responded with a fine running goal, and the contest was still up for grabs. Our defence were holding up pretty well, with Samuel and Henry playing loose across half-back – a dangerous combination to leave unattended. Liam again spotted up Luis who marked well inside 30 metres. Gerald, our Team Manager, wasn’t sure he could make the distance in to the wind, but Luis struck the ball beautifully, thanks to another perfect ball drop, and the Roosters had kicked 4 goals in to the wind.

Going in to the long break, the radar looked ominous and the dark clouds were building. Marking was a feature of our game today, in tricky conditions. Leo took a big hit while trying to pick up a low ball, and was in a great deal of pain. The game was stopped and the stretcher brought out as our trainer Yeni and others looked after him. He felt some tingling around the shoulders and spine, went off for scans, but we are pleased to report he has no structural damage and will be ok. A big thank you to Yeni and those who cared for him. The opposition player was given a yellow card for the high contact, and after a long break the game got back underway. The Roosters got rolling again with the wind, Socrates slotting another goal thanks to a fine set up by Zidane, Isaac C and Samuel. Lenny picked the ball up cleanly at pace to then enable Soc and Jack G to again combine for a goal. Kailey’s ruck work was starting to have a big influence on the game, enabling West to run on to it, kick to Zidane, on to Soc for another great goal. Liam took a huge mark in defence, Lachlan was getting involved and the Roosters were right on top.

The final stanza saw the rain belting down. The temperature dropped about 6 degrees and the spectators were shivering. Kicking in to the wind we quietly thought: just ground out a nil-all quarter boys. But our young Roosters had other ideas. Henry kicked one of the best team goals of the year after a huge and skillful effort further down the field, with Diesel, Liam, Soc, Lachlan, Samuel, Isaac C and West all involved. Daniel kicked nicely in to Diesel for a behind, and Henry had a huge final quarter in the wet. Ben also seemed to get better the wetter it became. He ran in to dangerous spots, marked well and quickly dished off to teammates. Some of the marking and precise kicking in the final quarter in appalling conditions was impressive, to say the least. Diesel kicked a great crumbing goal before Jack G put the icing on a handy four-goal game with a sensational boo-nah-nah kick through the big sticks from the velodrome pocket.

Our backline were miserly today, conceding just two goals. Juma played well, not letting his opponent get an easy possession. Bailey and Isaac T stuck to their task well – refusing to yield in the face of much bigger opponents.  Murphy and Isaac C got involved around the ground, both using their pace and skill to influence contests.

A pretty complete performance from the group.  The preparedness to adapt to the conditions, alter the game plan when required and willingness to bring others into the play bodes well for later in the season.  The challenges will keep on coming – whether it be the 18 we take on at Hoppers Crossing this week, the weather, injury, illness or unavailabilities – they all give us the opportunity to take on different roles, step up when it is your turn to go or just get in and do some heavy lifting.  These will all help develop our players and make them better in all manner of ways.  Early nights boys and plenty of vegetables – we need you all healthy and ready to go.

Big shout out to Leo – gusty effort putting his head over it and set a great example of what tough footy is all about.  Get well soon.

Final scores: West Footscray 13.5 - 83 def Caroline Springs 2.5 - 17

Goal kickers: Jack Gerardi 4, Socrates 4, Luis Lakusa 2, Diesel Lim 1, Henry Lovell 1, Jonathan Stelluto 1.


Newsletter May 25

Good Evening Roosters,

Super Sunday has been and gone at Shorten Reserve. Don’t fret though. There are still a few more of those Sundays coming up. Once again a huge thank you to all those who helped out on the weekend. The teams are looking pretty good at this stage of the season. Both Under 9 sides are improving at an exponential rate. Des has the 10s absolutely purring. My Under 11s are sitting second on the table despite losing a nail biter on Sunday.  Tim has his 13s beautifully placed at second on the table with a healthy percentage courtesy of some absolute hidings they have dished out in recent weeks. Great work by all involved. With 8 rounds left plus finals, 2017 may yet prove to be the year of the Rooster!

Chocolate Money

Once again folks, we remind you that we would like your chocolate money returned by next Friday. That’s the 2nd of June. Please return it to Andrew at Friday night training.

Hoodies

We are expecting our hoodies to be delivered in the next 24 hours. If we have them in time for tomorrow night we will begin to distribute them after training. We have quite a few to hand out, so please be patient. They will only be available at the conclusion of training.

Volunteering

It was noticed by myself and other members of the club that a lot of volunteer roles appear to be being filled by the same parents every week. We once again remind you that we need everyone to do their bit at our growing club.

I have also had parents querying the lack of umpires at some of our games. This is a problem faced by many clubs and is caused by the lack of umpires available right across Melbourne. When we are not allocated an umpire, we need a parent to fill this role. Please do not expect the same 2 or 3 parents to do this task every time. I know that it may be daunting, but it really only requires a basic understanding of the rules. I am certain that there are more than 3 parents that possess this knowledge. You can share the duties with other parents at each game so that we don’t run one mum or dad into the ground. Please think about this. It is not fair to expect the same people to do this every time.

Friday Night Kitchen

Once again, Kiah and Brendon will fire up the kitchen on Friday night. You know the drill guys. Cheap food for all and drinks available at the bar.

Match Reports

We didn’t receive too many photos this week. Please feel free to snap away at all of our games and send us the photos. You can either post them to our Facebook page or send them to me via email at w.f.roostersjuniors@gmail.com.

Check out the Round 6 Match Reports here.

Remember to take those photos parents. If this happens, we want to see it!

This Weeks Games

The Under 11s have the bye this week.

For all other teams, please check out the fixtures here for all of your match times and venues.

That’s about it for this week Roosters

Good luck to all those playing on Sunday

Damian


Round 6

WEST FOOTSCRAY ROOSTERS - Under 9 Reds vs. Point Cook – Round Six - 21/5/17.

 

Well it was a big weekend at Shorten Reserve with all but one of the Roosters junior sides playing at home. The Niner’s were somehow gifted with the 10.20 time slot, which afforded us not only a sleep in of sorts but also Desmond Deckers Tens were kind enough to kick the dew from the deck and give us dry track to run out onto. Thankyou Desmond and thankyou tens…

 

After last weeks game against the Vikings in Altona, we were warned to watch out for Point Cook who had apparently given them a good going over the week before. I don’t like getting ominous warnings from Vikings; it doesn’t sit well with me at all! In fact it sat with me all week and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Damn Vikings!

 

The Niner’s were in good spirits though having won three in a row, their enthusiasm was  enough to calm my nerves and not only that, we were also bolstered by the welcome return of Rylan “Raz” Rees for his first game after  a pre season training mishap saw him out for the first five weeks.

 

Our Captains for the day would be Jack G and Jami. We won the toss and were kicking to the dog park. Those nerves would soon settle as the Roosters hit the deck running and ran hard. Archie would get us off to a flyer with a quick goal and followed that up with another point. Harry was marking everything, Iggy was tackling, “Howe Diddy” was mopping up with his beautiful read of the play. He would mark and goal as well on the back of another goal from Archie. The Roosters were up and about and had put Point Cook on the back foot. Their back foot however was still good enough to kick two goals for the term. My opposing coach and I would give a knowing nod of mutual respect to each other as we walked to our quarter time huddles. We both knew we were in for a cracking game.

 

The second quarter would bring the rotations and the thus far entertaining contest would continue. Dozer, minus the helmet this week earned himself a free kick by getting himself in front of the pack, Clara is in outstanding form attacking the ball at every opportunity; Riley was tough in the ruck and the contest and was getting plenty of it; Aiden too is having a great season, he was instrumental in keeping us in the game in the second quarter. Luca held sway at full back and used his beautiful kicking to relieve defensive pressure. Take a bow Jack P and Archer; both boys were terrific in what were probably their best games to date. Diesel had a cracker, one of the littlest fellas on the park, he took some unbelievable grabs and was really unlucky to get pinged a couple of times for over the shoulder, only because of his determination to bring down bigger bodies. Marking would be a feature of the quarter with Jack G and Archer amongst the grabs as well. Sasha the Dasher and Louis started to work themselves into the game, Louis albeit with a cracking headache which would subdue his natural running flair. Another fine mark and goal from Howe Diddy would be our only major for the quarter. The slimmest of margins would be all that would separate two desperate teams at the main break with the Roosters up by one.

 

The third would be a carbon copy of the first two. Raz was unbeatable at full back; he attacked the ball at full pace and coolly send back out of the danger zone with that left foot of his. Harry channelled Jonathan Brown as he threw himself into an oncoming pack to take the mark of the day. Archie was electric, Diesel took another grab, and Clara was again in everything. “Lace Up” Lacey continues to grow (metaphorically!) and tackled whoever had the ball, and Oscar and Oliver were also getting their hands on it in the middle. The play of the quarter would be a great team effort which started with Raz running out of defence, Riley took a great mark in the middle and played on, he banged it into an open forward line into which Aiden was streaming, and he ran onto it and put it through. Great teamwork Roosters! Three quarter time would see the scores dead level with 33 a piece.

 

Our forth quarters have been amazing this year, all out attack with defenders prepared to push forward and create enormous drive off half back. Howe Diddy, Max ‘more than a’ Phelan and Sasha the Dasher were the ’Generals today. They were miserly along with Dylan and Jack G in not allowing Point Cook any opportunity to get near the goals. Max shrugged the shoulders a couple of times to motor out of defence whilst Sash and Xav use pure pace. This in turn kept our forward line busy. Abby was terrific taking her first mark and getting some handballs out of congestion. Otto would again pop up for a mark in the square and drive home a goal to put us one up. Would this be enough to send the Viking warning to the Valkyries? I secretly hoped so but wanted one more to seal their fate. The mercy rule would see Point Cook back inside their forward fifty but Max had other ideas. A twist here a turn there and he was gone, the members wing rose as one as the ball ended up with Harry who torped to the top of the square where Jami, who had been busy all day marked it on his chest. Without waiting for a man on his mark he ran in and banged it home. Fate sealed! This was easily our toughest game and more pleasingly our best all round performance with quite a few players starting to get a real feel and taste of the pace.  The end result of 7.4.46 – 5.3.33 showed how close a contest it was. Point Cook are a terrific side with great run and carry and their marking is exceptional for under 9’s footy, which makes the result even more pleasing.

 

We turn our attentions now to next week. Another sleep in Sunday at home with a 10.20 start against St. Bernard’s.

 

Special thanks to Libby and Brad for tending to the wounded and Chris from the Phelan Footy Factory for donning the whites and whistle and everyone who filled the volunteered roles, and to those who cheered us on, we can’t do this without you, it is most appreciated.

 

Richie and Kane.

Round 6 – Away to Flemington Colts.

A calm and bright morning in not-to-far-away Kensington, we were to play in the later time slot.

We warmed up while the locals played a  ½ field under 8’s Football and a  ½ Field junior Soccer on the Number 2 oval we were to later use.

The amount of games on the 2 ovals was also apparent by the allocation lists on the 5 change rooms.

 

Our Captains today;

As chosen by last weeks co-Captain Alex (Arti was absent today) was Bastien Meyer – for strong efforts and improvements and demonstrating our Team values.

Our other co-Captain today was Mitchell Houareau – for being one of our most consistent players over our season so far and setting high standards in tackling, teamwork and good decision-making.

Debut Game for Alan Luu.

 

 

1st Quarter

In a rather fast and unexpected start, the ball quickly rushed up the Colts scoring end, where we resisted briefly – but conceded a goal.

Unfortunately this was the story for the quarter.

The Colts were a well drilled Team, keeping a good separation from each other and making good passes by hand and foot, moving the ball their way.  They also centred the ball to better scoring positions when front of goal.

They were not better, bigger or faster players than ours – just using the ball and space better.

Our better efforts were mainly defensive;

Maya ripped the ball out of the pack.

Felix got a good handball out under pressure.

Miles made a good smother from an oppositions kick.

Maya-Noah-Arlo M made a good Teamwork play in the backline, with a kick pass, mark and play-on.

Mitchell (C) saved a goal right on the goal-line.

 

2nd Quarter.

We paused before the start of the second quarter as a Steam Train was heading outbound past the nearby South Kensington Station – engine smoke billowing and whistle blowing.

The game got underway and the game went to the other end of the field, but again our defensive 50.

Arlo M was brave under a mark – and copped a falcon, but continued unperturbed.

The Colts made it hard for us to get effective hands on the ball and all our possessions were under pressure.

Jake took a strong pack mark.

1st Gamer Alan got into the game and won a free kick with a strong tackle.

Griffin and Jake were making an impression with their longer kicking.

We worked the ball to our scoring end, only to get out-numbered near the goal-square and got exposed on the rebound. The Colts scored an end to end goal.

To their credit our Roosters didn't drop their head.

From our kick-off, we went forward again.

Griffin kicked into our forward 50.

We were out-numbered where the ball landed and it came back out.

Griffin again got the ball, this time his pass inside 50 was marked by Jake..

He dodged a weaved, took a bounce and eventually found space – but the siren sounded before he got his shot away.

We were getting into the game – but not getting the big rewards on the scoreboard.

 

3rd Quarter.

After waiting for an insistent dog owner claiming back the grass while we “weren’t using it” – apparently this is also the off-leash dog area as-well as multi-sport field, we resumed.

I was impressed with the Team’s enthusiasm and willingness to hear and try some different tactics to try and get back into the game.

 

There was another early goal to Flemington, but that only got us in harder at the ball.

Arlo M was a tackling machine, Bastien, Oscar and Kai were getting more of the ball.

Eli and Hugo were now getting good use of their speed, Alex, Hadi and Miles were strong around the ball, Mrinal and Nathaniel were getting more meaningful possessions.

Our combined good work had the ball in our 50 for a length of time.

A kick into our goal-square lead to a scramble … and a GOAL off the ground to our 1st Gamer Alan.

The Roosters were deservedly very happy with themselves – but maybe a bit too much so… From the resultant kick off, the Colts got a straightforward goal.

We were unlucky not to return the favour on our next kick off – Mitchell was just off with his shot at goal.

Before the quarter finished Efe took a. Good mark and Griffin had another clearing kick.

 

4th Quarter.

We had talked about finishing the game off well – and we did.

The Roosters kept the ball heading their way.

Arlo S-T kept good pressure in our forward 50, the ball came out to Jake who kicked a GOAL.

Mitchell (C) stopped momentum the other way with a great tackle.

Into our forward 50 again, Efe kicked a point.

 

We kept it's our end for the remainder of the game.

 

Things I  loved;

Our Roosters continued resolve to get into the game, which resulted in dominant field position in the final quarter.

 

Our team doesn't have any passengers, they are all playing their role in the Team.  There is whole hearted  tackling by everyone and when we link up, our teamwork gets us forward effectively..

 

Things to work on;;

Keeping width from each other.

Ways of keeping the ball moving forward

Getting around opposition players.

 

Special mentions;

Heartland Award;

Arlo Milsom -  for a strong. Chasing and tackling effort and looking for good options with the ball.

 

Continued good examples of good play and our values from our two Captains. – Bastien and Mitchell.

 

Thankyou Monique,  Ash, Paul in the goals and all our Teams helpers. – we really cannot have these games without this help. – and our kids are loving playing in their Team.

 

See you at training,

Regards,

Paul

 

Match Report Under 10s

Rd 6 vs St Bernard’s

21st May 2017

 

There’s a part of me that longs for cricket season.  Not just for the warmth, and the holidays, and the relaxed Sunday morning… but for the gentle, predictable metre of the game.  Twenty-two yards of action with a readily identifiable batsman, bowler and fielder.  A match report writer’s dream.

 

No such tranquillity on Sunday morning at the Coop.  The field of battle seems gargantuan by comparison and the flight of the ball as unpredictable and unfriendly as Trump’s twitter feed.  What is more predictable however, is the absence of an umpire and Dave Hall donned the white B’n’L for the 3rd time in 6 games.  Rumour has it he recently cancelled his gym membership as his umpiring gigs each week are giving him a sufficient workout.

 

Returning to home after a few weeks’ absence brought a relished mini sleep-in, which may have been exaggerated by many of our Roosters.  It was 8.30 before the full list had arrived and whilst I hate to be a grump I’d urge all parents to please try to arrive as close to the appointed time as possible.  Prior to the 8.50 start there are several administrative jobs which cannot be completed until the full list is accounted for so Des and I would really appreciate your assistance in this regard.

 

The opposition arrived bringing their formidable reputation.  St Bernard’s.  Breeding ground for AFL footballers: Simon Madden, Matthew Lloyd and Dane Swan to name but a few.   The Castle on the Buckley St Hill.  The great build-it-and-they-will-come field of dreams for Catholics of the North-West.  Traditional foe to De La Salle, Parade, CBC and the mighty avalanche. Edmund Rice himself would have been proud of this striped band of brothers who took to the field with a swagger, but despite their militia-like appearance our little Roosters showed no fear as they charged out led by captains Thomas & Eli.

 

The first quarter was an intense struggle with the ball barely moving from the Roosters forward arc.  36 little footballers fought over a small patch of grass for a full 15 minutes with neither side giving an inch.  Every attempt by St Bernard’s to drag the ball out of defence was foiled; multiple attempts to score by the Roosters saw cruel bounces and unlucky interceptions result in a 2 point lead at quarter-time.  Our fellas deserved better reward on the scoreboard, but it has to be said the St Bernard’s defence had few cracks.

 

The second quarter was more of the same with the battle continuing in the same space on the ground.  Unfortunately that meant it was the Roosters defending this time and the pressure finally broke, resulting in a St Bernard’s goal.  The Roosters quickly responded and the ball eventually made its way to the playground end where a couple more points were kicked.  By now the tight structure of the first quarter had given way to something closer resembling chaos but the boys continued to work hard right up to the siren, preventing any more scoring shorts for the Snowdogs.

 

During the half-time address the registrars and necromancers amongst us gathered to query how it was Jeff Fehring had managed to pull on the #29 jumper for St Bernard’s.  Meanwhile Des challenged the boys as to whether they had allowed a little bit of complacency to creep in, returning home after a few good wins on the road.  He implored them to hold their structure and continue working hard in the second half.

 

In the third quarter the game turned physical as these two evenly matched sides searched for any advantage.  Skirmishes broke out all over the ground and our wily veteran Benny copped some studs to the abdomen, requiring some medical attention and ultimate dispatch to the bench.  With the umpire’s, trainers’ and coaches’ attention diverted, St Bernard’s snuck in a handy second goal.  The Roosters responded again with a couple more points – trying to catch them the hard way – before the final break.

 

At the final huddle it was clear the intensely physical nature of the game was having an impact and their little bodies were sagging.  Des called for one final effort and out they went, determined to give it one last try to bring it home.  Alas, after an early goal to St Bernard’s Mark became the busiest person on the ground as players went down like ninepins.  Finally though, Joharo kicked our only goal for the game.  In another tightly fought quarter, St Bernard’s came away with the chocolates when the final siren blew: the scoreline of 3.2 (20) to 1.6 (12) demonstrating that with a few things going our way victory would have been ours.

 

In a game resembling an arm wrestle it was hard to get a sense of the flow but every player needs to be congratulated for their individual efforts.  We matched St Bernard’s well but they were just a little bit cleaner with their skills – held their marks and kicked truly.  Leaves us with something to work on as we look forward to the return bout.

 

Marlon: clever work with smothers and shepherding to push the ball forward

Leo: tight work in defence

Ben: was the opposition target as he cleaved the pack to stream down the wing time after time

Alex: great marking and shepherding

Ashton: found space several times to become the go-to player

Nicholas: great defence, terrific passing and reading the play

Rory: stalwart in defence, saved several goals with clever thinking and clear head

Eli: clever kicking, consistently finding a target

Hamish: great tackling

Ziggy: several strong, overhead marks using his height to great advantage

Manny: flexibility around the ground, adapting to several different jobs

Flynn: uses his body so cleverly, strong marks and desperate tackles

Noah: work rate improves every week, fearsome on the forward line, some unlucky misses

Reuben: ball magnet, seemed to be 7 or 8 Reubens on the ground

Ezekiel: great marking, rewarded with free kicks

Tem: great defensive work

William: goal sneak, involved in several attempts on goal

Thomas: worked extremely hard all day and never gave up

Patrick: consistent attempts to move it forward

Joharo: kicked a fantastic long goal

Kiir: great presence up forward, uses his body cleverly

 

Under 11

Round 6 West Footscray vs Sanctuary Lakes

 

A week is a long time in football, and two weeks without a match report is approximately twice as long. (Author Unknown)

 

The scientific community are divided on this theory. I have my own opinions but don’t have the confidence, nor the resilience to have them subjected to peer review in something as reputable as the West Footscray Under 11 Match Reports. I’m afraid that you’ll have to make up your own minds. What was clear to all and sundry at Shorten Reserve was that for the very first time every player was available for the game. Great result for the team and a problem for the coach. 23 won’t go into 18, or anything else for that matter as it’s a prime number (Fun Fact #1), so the magnets would be dizzy by the end of the game. Our  opponents would be Sanctuary Lakes. Their capabilities were a mystery to us, much like the name of their suburb. I picture frightened mariners. You? The answer would be revealed in an hour and a bit. The teams’ ability that is. Not the origins of the suburbs name.

 

All eyes were on the Sharks #13 as they took their positions. The leading goal scorer in the comp was a large lump of a boy. Straight into the middle he went. Mmmm? I wasn’t expecting that. Kadin, Cooper, West and Felix started in there with “the Lump”. Jack had made a remarkable recovery after being carried off to emergency the week prior, and would start on the flank as a precaution much to his disgust, and I’ll admit it, my slight amusement! The Sharks had some big kids out there. We would need to be fast and clean. Turns out they were pretty quick and fast as well. I hate that! They also had a nice breeze to kick with. Our backs had a busy quarter. Frank was his usual industrious self. Tackles, clearances and commitment every week. Vinh was Mr. Dependable again. His poise and skill were amazing, as well as much needed, as we were seriously under the pump.  The pump was often operated by “The Lump”. He was doing as he wanted. He bagged a snag from about 40 out and capped it off with a great over-celebration. I instantly recalled him from an Under 9 game several years ago in which he swore at me repeatedly and gave away 15m penalties for arguing with the umpires. Awesome. Now I don’t feel bad about not liking him! That’s right. I don’t like every child I encounter (Fun Fact #2). Despite having the breeze and “The Lump”, it wasn’t all their way. Felix was a machine in the middle. Effort after effort rewarded him with many possessions. Weston had his radar going again and fed out the ball to his willing team mates. Yash was flying on his wing as was Christian on his. We were getting it forward but not quite deep enough. Eventually this would change and Nathaniel found himself bustling with his opponent in the goal square. A great contested mark and a kick straight through the middle. Well done buddy. How much have you improved in 6 games? Amazing stuff. The Sharks and “The Lump” continued to smack it forward. Samuel and Zach were awesome, as was Aaron. Their tackling and chasing prevented more goals from being scored against us and eliminated the chance of “The Lump” to yell and fist pump simultaneously.

 

Quarter time: West Footscray 1.0.6 vs Sanctuary Lakes 3.2.20

 

All the talk at the break was of “the Lump”. How big is he? How old is he? Can you give him a slightly disrespectful nickname in the match report? Big, dunno and I’m on it were my responses. What I did tell them was that we had the wind this term and should use it. We have a human wrecking ball in the form of Leroy (Nugget) who has the pace, strength and contempt for his own wellbeing to we need to lock down “The Lump”. Jack was back in the middle this term and wasted no time in getting his hands on it. Kadin was winning taps to our mids and they were using it well. “Nugget” would lay the tackle of the season. A full speed, horizontal take down of a hapless Sharks player. A free kick was Nuggets reward and nightmares for weeks the victim. Murphy was running hard and produced another one of those kicks that refused to bounce through. Mickey was leading nicely and giving our midfielders some quality options. Sean “Hi-Vis” Lopez found himself with the ball on his flank after nice leads and strong marks. The dish off handball didn’t go unnoticed either. Nice! BANG! Jack gets his first and we are up to our eyeballs in this game (Whatever that means?). “The Lump” was giving his all for our opponents. So much so that he was forced from the game for a few minutes to sort out his asthma. He did however take a break from his Ventolin on the way off to tell one of his team mates that they were useless. Classic Lump that! Our boys were far from useless. We know that because “The Lump” didn’t tell them so. Time after time we smashed it forward. Angus looked a chance, as did Tito. Weston always looks like a chance. He proved this as he smacked through our second of the term.  Bang!!!!!! Kadin made it 3 for the term. A dominant quarter by the Roosters which was evident by the scoreboard (I actually can’t see it from the bench) and the appearance of Sass chasing a kick in our forward line despite him being in the back pocket.

 

Half Time:  West Footscray 4.0.24 vs Sanctuary Lakes 3.2.20

 

Back into the breeze was the mission in the third. Defending against it would be tough. Cooper was in the middle and playing arguably his best game ever. He was doing it all for his team. Alek was at the peak of his powers down back. He is without doubt the greatest exponent of the Golden Fist in this clubs nearly 100 year history. He combined the fist with some amazing running out of congestion with sidesteps and balks. His feet were moving quicker than those of a duck dancing on a hot plate.  Xavier “The Doona” was sensational down back. His tackling and effort might just earn him a new nickname and a permanent spot. “The Wallet” might be the first thing that goes in the back pocket each week! “The Lump” was still everywhere. Long kicks, don’t argues and blind turns when there is nobody there are hard to combat. We were giving as good as we got out there. The ball was finding its way to our forward line repeatedly. Christian has been a super addition to the team this season. His running and link up play are a treat to watch. He knows where and when to run and as a result he found himself sprinting towards the big sticks at the dog park end. He kicked truly from about 25 out. Great goal and an awesome team lifter. Elijah Moon had a spell in the ruck and was super competitive. The down side to this is every time I put him there he gets hurt! He was in there long enough to get it moving our way forward again.  A long kick landed deep in our forward line where Jack would get it. That’s only going one way folks. Straight through the middle.

 

3 Quarter Time: West Footscray 6.1.37 vs Sanctuary Lakes 6.4.40

 

3 Points was all that separated the teams at the final change. Watto plugged the de-fib machine into the charger in case the excitement got too much. Sanctuary Lakes dropped an extra defender back to protect the lead. You guessed it. “The Lump” got the job. To say the last quarter was thrilling would be an understatement. The game quickly became a contest between an irresistible force (That’s us) and the immovable object (our old mate Lumpy). Cooper was amazing. Frank and Vinh were magnificent. Alek was still dancing through packs. Still no goal. Felix was running as quickly as he had in the first. Nugget was still laying huge tackles. Christian almost burst through only to be caught by the jumper. Still no goal. Weston was remarkable in the last term.  He must have been nearly cooked but kept going about finding a way through the defence of the Sharks. Credit where it’s due. They were tighter than a snare drum down back. Time and time again we pushed forward only to see it come straight back out. I could really pad out this report now but I won’t. It’s late and I’m tired (Fun Fact #3). As a result of this I can sadly inform you that the goal we needed would never come.

 

Full Time: West Footscray 6.2.38 vs Sanctuary Lakes 6.4.40

 

No chocolates this week for the 11s. It was one of those games where neither team deserved to lose. Many of our boys played their best games yet. The improvement in the new guys is astonishing. Once again we have locked horns with one of the better teams and proved that we are just as capable. With some hard work at training and a little more polish on our game plan, who knows? We might even have them all covered (Fun Fact #4)

 

Damian

U13’s West Footscray V St Albans

 

Round 6, and we were the fourth and final game in a long day at Roosters central. A 2.05 start felt very strange – usually we are home by now and getting some jobs done around home or having a nap.

 

We had played St Albans only two weeks earlier, but thanks to the league shuffling teams and a lack of attention to fixture details, here we were again. Last time it had been a frustratingly crowded game in our forward line with a lot of points kicked. The coach had plenty of tactics on the board about areas to improve on and it seemed they were listening. There were a few last minute outs through illness and injury so we took to the field with only 17 today, and St Albans obliged to do the same.

 

Lachlan was captain today, and the coin toss looked comical as he faced off against St Albans two biggest players. But size doesn’t always matter when it comes to team football and the Roosters put on a display today. Without going into too many details it was a much better game in the sense that the players kept positions, and looked to centre the ball to team mates.

 

A few player highlights included: Soc kicking another bag (and more importantly giving off plenty also), Liam and Nav with their tackling, Diesel’s fearlessness despite his sore neck, Zidane and Samuel’s perfect kicking through the middle of the ground, Ben, Isaac C, Jonathan and Lenny running into space and being rewarded, Lachie, Luis and Leo got plenty of the ball up forward and back, Daniel and Juma had good games in the centre bounces, Henry ran hard with and without the ball, and Alex played a great game again all around the ground.

 

Particularly pleasing is the willingness of the boys to work on key targets each week.  In a sense these one sided games allow us to put work in on how we wish to contend with Sunshine Heights next time, but there are also key learning moments to be had in their own right.  Locking down on a player – Zidane and Liam were assigned the job on #25 and his output was certainly minimalised until we let him go in the last quarter.  Switching the ball to the attacking side is an area we spoke about and it is still a work in progress with several opportunities to do that missed by players not opening up their vision.  This can be made easier by players who run to the right position using their voice to demand the footy.  Our positioning at stoppages is improving with players now aware of blocking the exit should the opposition win the clearance as well as looking around and not allowing a free player to escape out the back.  There is still plenty of room for improvement with our kicking technique right in front of goal. Lachie and Lenny will be having nightmares about goal posts this week I think.

 

A note from the side - the St Albans coach appeared to actually be Henry Winkler ‘The Fonz’ and our boundary rider Rohan is expecting this to be confirmed in the next issue of ‘where are they now’.

 

And so another beautiful late Autumn afternoon ended. Soft sunshine, golden leaves and a gentle breeze set the mood for a relaxing afternoon in the park, and for the most part the game didn’t really disturb the ambiance. At least that was the feeling watching from the grass on the northern hill. The players probably weren’t quite so relaxed. St Albans did have several good players that required a lot of effort to chase down or tackle. To their credit they kept trying and did get on the board – good luck to them in what will be a tough season. I expect next week against Caroline Springs will be a different story and the Roosters will be looking for a challenge – we need all hands on deck, so get yourselves healthy and make every effort to don the jumper and help the side get to equal top of the ladder .

 

Thanks to all the parents helping and supporting on the day. We look forward to a bigger challenge next week against Caroline Springs, at home again.

 

Roosters 26. 20. 176 def St Albans 2. 4. 16

 

Goals: Socrates 6, Liam 3, Samuel 3, Henry 3, Alex 3, Lachlan 2, Zidane 2, Jonathan 2, Lenny 1, Navindu 1


Newsletter May 18

Good Evening Roosters

There were some fantastic results from last weekend’s round of football. All of our much deserving Mums missing out on breakfast in bed for Mother’s day was however a disappointing result. A massive thanks to all the mums who turned out to watch our Roosters play. You’re awesome! You know who else is awesome? Our weekly band of volunteers. That’s who! We love your work.

Chocolates

We still have a few boxes of fundraising chocolates left. If you would like to grab another, please see Andrew or your Team Manager. Andrew will be at training on Friday night to collect your chocolate money if you have it. We would like to have all money for the chocolates back by Friday June 2nd.

WRFL Grading

The WRFL have this week made some grading changes to competitions in order to make them more even and competitive. These changes have affected both of our teams that play with scoring. The Under 11s can welcome Spotswood to their competition from division 1. The Under 13s now have Point Cook in their division after coming down from division 2.

Backpacks

We have a small number of Roosters Backpacks available for sale at the club. These are perfect for your match day kit. These will be available at the club on Friday night and are an absolute steal at $20. If you would like one you had better get in quick.

Match Reports

The reports are now up on our website. The eagle eyed amongst you may notice that the Under 11 report is not there. That’s because I haven’t finished it. I hope to have it done by tomorrow night. I apologise for the lateness (Phew! What a week!)  Those of you not impacted by this, please enjoy the reports from your much more organised coaches!

This Weeks Games

It’s an absolute Rooster Fest at Shorten Reserve this weekend with four teams playing at home. The  Under 10s kick things off at 8:50 am, the Under 9 Reds hit the ground at 10:20, the 11s have a 12:05 start time and the 13s wrap it all up at 2:05pm.

The Under 9 Blues are away at Flemington this week. This game starts at 10:20.

Check the fixtures for more info here.

Remember that we need you at the ground at least 50 minutes before every game.

That’s it for this week

Go Roosters

Damian


Round 5

WEST FOOTSCRAY ROOSTERS - Under 9 Reds vs. Altona Vikings – Round Five - 12/5/17.

You gotta love a picture perfect Autumnal Mothers Day. Glorious sunshine, crisp and clean, fresh dew on the deck and Junior Footy to kick start a traditionally busy day.

The Niner’s were back in the bus and on the road, this time stopping in Altona for a date with the Vikings. Altona is another side that we had not yet encountered on our Under 9’s journey thus far, so we could not under estimate what may come. But we probably did… We didn’t expect for the ground to be as big as it was, that is for sure!

Our Captain’s for the day would be a pair of Jack’s in Diesel and Jack P; I wondered what Altona would be betting at the coin toss! As it turns out, it was one of a kind and our pair decided to kick to the car park end. I would find out after the game it was so that we could have the wind in the second quarter!  Wind?! For those of you following the Reds, you would have noticed that they have been up and about in the last two games having won both their last outings and looking for more. Our starts have been terrific with the aim of creating enough score board pressure in the first to be able to absorb the rotations in the second and third quarters.

It did look to be business as usual, however the Niner’s would come up against something that they had not faced before. Officiating Umpires. Umpires keen to ensure that the contest is played in the true spirit of under nines football. Most of you will have heard me bang on about watching your tackles and one bounce only and don’t kick off the ground. They were all enforced today and then some, for which I am grateful. We gave away free kick after free kick after free kick, which frustrated our little Roosters to the point of exasperation but by the end of the game, the free kicks were coming back our way as we were able to adapt a little better than Altona. We had all the attack in the first but we let our frustrations take hold which meant we were wasteful in front of goal. One goal four could have been five straight. We would also concede an easy goal after our backline came looking for action which left a solitary Viking in the goal square to pop one through.

Once again the rotations would see a shift in momentum and it was our turn for the backline to be busy. Harry, Riley and Sash would all take great defensive grabs to slow things down. Aiden decided to use his head and copped a falcon when he leapt for a pack grab. Clara was outstanding, laying tackles and attacking the ball and even teaming up with her bro Louis for a great passage of play through the middle of the ground. The end of the quarter would see us scoreless with the Vikings on top with two goals to none.

Time for oranges, rotations and reflections…….. Could we wrestle this one back?

The Niner’s were a little more fired up now, they could see that by listening to the umpires that they could win free kicks as well and it was Altona’s turn to get frustrated. I am not sure how many marks Harry took today, time and again popping up at the right time. He would also kick our only goal for the quarter. Jami also had a cracking quarter and was hell bent on bringing this one home. He would go on to win the Heartland for his attack on the ball. Archer found his feet today was amongst it in the middle with his hard work rewarded with a free kick in the centre when we needed it. Oliver was unlucky not to put one through after he too won a free kick in front of goals. Diesel took another great grab; Louis was in everything once again until a low blow took the wind from his considerable sails. He bravely battled on but would sit out the last quarter. Eamon is now officially Lace Up Lacey as he once again stitched up opponents twice his size. Captain Jack P, Oscar, Abby and Dylan all worked hard in the forward line creating forward pressure and we managed to keep the Vikings scoreless but we were still down by one point.

The Roosters were ready for action now, one point down, I don’t think so!

The sunshine had all but dried the dew from the grass which means traction which means action! Luca is having a great season, plenty of pace, beautiful kick, he loves the forward line! Dozer was in the middle tackling hard and winning clearances.  If the ball did venture past the defensive fifty Max ‘more than a’ Phelan would run onto it and coolly send it back into the corridor. Jackson and Archer were also hard at it in the pockets picking off everything that came their way as was Abby floating across the arcs. The quarter belonged to Archie and Xavier though. Both boys would lay great tackles which resulted in free kicks which resulted in goals, terrific quarter of footy fellas, (not that the other three weren’t!) Sasha the Dasher also had a great game; playing with his typical flair he was instrumental in so many plays today.

The siren would sound – jubilation! Another come from behind victory. (5.7.37 – 3.1.19.) It was a great game in many respects. Altona, coached by a fifteen year old, if you don’t mind, were very spirited and the umpiring taught us a thing or two about watching our tackles and listening to direction.

We turn our attentions now to next week. A sleep in Sunday with a 10.20 start against a side we have been told to watch out for in Point Cook, who appear to be on the ball.

Special thanks to Libby for tending to the wounded  and everyone who filled the volunteered roles, and to those who cheered us on away from home on a special day, we can’t do this without you, it is most appreciated.

Richie and Kane.

 

Round 5 – Mother’s Day – Away to Tarneit Titans.

After a strong finish to last weeks game, we were again optimistic of another good showing today.

After a few late arrivals, we had a full list of 24 players on hand, plenty of Mums in our crowd, and nice footy weather.

Our Captains from last week nominated Artisan Sairat as one captain, Alex Scanlon was chosen as our other captain – a fair reward to these players for consistent efforts and doing the right things over the last few weeks.

1st Quarter.

The game started with our Roosters dominating play and field position.  We were able to keep it in our forward half and forward 50 for a lot of the quarter.  We didn’t get full reward until Griffin got our first goal.

Bastien had his best game today, starting with some important touches – including knocking the ball forward out of packs.

Max and Noah ran hard all day and were in amongst the packs.

Malik, Kai and Maya played well all game by providing leads and option to their team-mates

We got hurt late in the quarter by a goal the other way.

 

2nd Quarter.

We game was a bit more even, but we got a lot better reward up forward.

Griff laid a great smother in our forward line to help lock the ball in.

Jake kicked a goal after a good mark.

From our Centre kick-off (no Centre bounces after a goal today) we had one of my favourite link up plays; Jake kicked off to Griff – Kicked forward to Nathaniel – Griff got the run past handball back from Nathaniel and then our kick into the forward line. There was other great link up plays in this game – which rewards our hard runners and the players that make good positions.

In attack, this teamwork allowed 2 more goals – both bounce through snaps by Arti (C) – in this quarter.

In defence our pressure efforts were also impressive – Jacob made a great chase and tackle which saved a goal.

Sophia and Miles both seem are enjoying the contest which they showed with repeated efforts at the ball.

Arlo M was laying tackles and getting good touches in attack and defence.

Eli again saved a goal with his positioning on the last line of defence.

Felix always used his pace to get to the ball and help it our way.

We were taking the game on and working very hard.

 

3rd Quarter.

Tarneit came out better in the 3rd quarter – we were chasing after players and the ball most of the time.

Our around-the-ball players were our best performers, but our outside players and marking targets were getting sucked into the packs also – we had no-one to kick to forward and loose opposition players behind us.

Alex (C) remained strong in his marking attempts and around the packs.

Jacob as chasing back hard to their loose opposition players – he ran hard both ways all day.

Oscar, Hugo kept in good position and got marks and important touches.

Arlo S-T ran into space often and should have been passed to more often.

Hadi would refuse to go to ground with multiple players trying to tackle him.

Efe roved the ball off our attempted mark in our forward 50 and was unlucky to miss a goal.

 

4th Quarter.

Would we lift in this quarter to secure the game?

Efe started well with a defensive mark and a clearing kick.

Griff had a great half volley pick up on our back flank

Mitchell made good position, took a mark in the goal square a settled with a well-deserved goal (would have been close for the Heartland Award)

Jacob fired out a handball to Jake and helped him get clear with a sheppard.

Mrinal was getting his touches by staying out of the packs and linking well withy team-mates.

 

 

Special Mentions;

Hearland Award – Nathaniel Cowie

-              For his field positioning when we had the ball and finding his player when defending.  Was part of some excellent link-up plays with his team-mates.

Played their best games so far this year – Bastien Meyer, Efe Anli and Arlo Milsom.

Co-Captains Artisan Sairat and Alex Scanlon – for continuing on from their solid games in previous weeks.

Birthdays this week;

Maya Jess, Alex Scanlon and Jacob Fitzgerald.

 

Things I loved today;

-              Tapping the ball forward of, or out of packs.

-              Link up plays

-              Everyone’s effort.

 

To work on next week;

-              Remembering our mouthguards.

-              Centring the ball to better scoring options.

-              Resist bunching around the ball – keep a good shape.

-              Moving target options – lead for marks, run past handballs.

 

Thankyou Monique, Ash and all our Game Day Helpers.

 

Call out for Training Day Helpers

We really could do with more helper participation at training.

All it needs to be is returning the ball to the kids, as they run through some drills.

I would like to be able to pull kids aside 1-on-1 and help them, with their individual skills, but I simply cannot do this when 16 – 20 kids can only be broken into 2 groups.

Smaller groups would mean more time with the ball and more variation to the drills – which can only benefit the individuals and the Team.

There really is great satisfaction in helping the kids and it will also help maintain their enthusiasm for sport.

 

Please bring along any completed Chocolates Fundraising to training this Friday, when it will be collected.

See you at Training.

 

Regards,

Paul.

 

Under 10’s: Round 5: vs Williamstown: Away: Mother’s Day: For me, Sunday’s game, was all about getting to know ourselves - as a team. This can be easily glossed over when the sun is shining on our fortunes but as my mother always used to tell me, “Rooster one day, feather duster the next”. (God bless Mum and her one liners. Years later, i didn’t think i could find new meanings to her distant words, but there you go. Thanks Mum) :)

Our young Roosters though were far from feather dusters and after a slow start proved their mettle, which I know they posses. I am proud of these young men's efforts and their never say never attitude against Williamstown. The score, (WFC 1.5 to Will’n 7.2) didn’t reflect our true endeavours and masks numerous missed opportunities and a few bad bounces that robbed us at critical times. However, this committed Under 10 team, really found a bond during this game and I look forward to them developing this in the remaining 9 games.

It was also a privilege to witness these young men honour their teammate, Moses, who played his final game for the Rooster’s. This spirit actually started in training, extended right through the game, and until young Moses was chaired off the ground and into the change rooms. Brings a tear to this old Roosters eye to see this generous team spirit & celebration after a hard fought battle. And as for Moses himself, our captain for the day; - Moses led from the front, never taking a backwards step against many larger Williamstown opponents - as he has persistently done throughout his Roosters career. A tenacity that I know will serve you well Moses, as you take on your next adventure in life. Thanks for taking to AFL like a duck to water, my New Zealand brother. We will miss you - keep building on your courage, good humour, and kind heart and all the best in the ‘States’.

You can usually tell how a team will perform in the training leading up to a game and especially in the pre-game warm up. Last week against PEGS, the switch was off but there was enough light to get away with it. On Sunday, again the switch was off and wee-Willy made us play in the dark, especially early.

While we weren’t ‘on’ as a team during the 1st quarter there were a several who quickly took up the challenge. Hamish, fresh from his Heartland Award last week, played an even better game this week. Constantly, taking the bit between his teeth, breaking lines and carrying the ball forward, Hamish gave a full four quarter effort and brought his teammates into the game. Benny starting on the ball this week, was everywhere early on; skilfully cutting off the opponent's forward entries and backing it up with 3rd, 4th & 5th efforts. Only an injury brought him to the bench halfway through the 1st, and I feared we had lost him for the day; thankfully he returned later to play an outstanding game, but he was sorely missed for most of the 1st half.

Rory, took up CHB and had his hands full early on with Willys most dominate player. Rory, likes a challenge though and it was great to see him dish out his intensity. Willy like to get the ball out of the packs quickly to their runners and Rory was one who helped stop the early avalanche. Ezekiel was in and under all game, laying some big tackles and pushing himself onto the next contest. Ezekiel showed a fierce will and played his best game of the year. Ash, our Heartland winner for the day, started in the ruck and dominated the hitouts and the ground ball. He went onto to play a vital role in defence and attack and was another who played his best game this year. Kiir always sets a high standard and this match was no different - rarely beaten, Kiir has a huge will and the longer the game went, the less willing Williamstown were in taking him on. The ever reliable Reuben put on his best game of the year, covering a lot of distance with gut running, constantly putting himself in the right positions over the four quarters. His disposals were clean and his marking around the ground a feature.

The quarter break was a time to catch up and recompose after Willy’s onslaught. Looking into the team's eyes it was great to see their steely resolve across all. The challenge had been laid down and it was now up to the group to answer. You’re never exactly sure how a team will respond but it didn’t take long to see their combativeness shine. Noah now shifted to FB and played an outstanding remainder of the game. His ability to break tackles, kick long and accurately, a real feature; he was another who played his best game so far. I sense we are about to see the best of Noah. Patrick laid some big tackles in the 1st half and was unlucky not to win a few free kicks in my book, but to his credit he kept backing himself in. A couple of wrong positionings by the coach didn’t help Patrick but he showed grit, shutting down numerous Williamstown advances. Nicholas moved into the middle and quickly made his presence felt with some excellent pressure and repeat efforts. After a few missed goal opportunities went begging, ones we would normally have taken, Williamstown countered attack with some late goals - putting the acid firmly back on the Roosters at the halftime break.

Any doubts that the Roosters would fall away were quickly dispelled when they entered the huddle. The blue steel gaze was in. A good example, was Ezekiel making a beeline to me and demanding to be in the coal face, ‘I want to attack the enemy's strategy, I want to take them down’. (Sun Tzu would have been proud.) I knew then, these young Roosters were revelling in the challenge.

With oranges consumed and the 2nd half under way it was a pleasure to watch these Roosters go to work and attack the enemy's strategy. No more fast Willy balls out of congestion, no more easy possessions, less time for their precision kicking and no more loose Rooster checking. These Roosters were bonded, ‘on’ and finding their groove. Joharo moved into the ruck and started to apply that repeat pressure in close and followed it up with slick handballs to our runners: Thomas combined his clean inside work with some big running on the outside, gaining us a valuable metres; Ziggy made his presence felt in the packs, flying for some big marks and bringing the ball to ground: Tem showed his tenacious will at the contest building further upon his PEG’s game (and is close to a breakout game); Flynn’s backed his game reading skills, making several courageous decisions to leave his opponents at crucial times and cutting off their advances whilst laying some big run down tackles: Zaw Zaw upped his work rate and came close to kicking two goals, only to be thwarted by the bounce of the ball: Will willed himself into the game and took it right up to the bigger Williamstown players, displaying his sublime skill of evasion through traffic; Leo in between keeping the backline organised, provided the pressure and run we needed from the back half; Alex asserted his strength into the contest and backed this up with some gut running, giving us that important link up we needed; Eli locked onto to his opponent and beat them handsomely, while at the same time giving us more run and link up; and Manny threw himself into the contests with abandon and followed that it up with numerous repeat efforts.

Full credit to all our young Roosters, we ran this game out to the end with full attack, despite the early setbacks. By all accounts from Williamstown, it was their hardest game this year and our pressure kept them in check in the 2nd half (1 goal each). But there was no disputing we have some homework to do - improve our field kicking; hone our team strategies and decision making; and hold our structures. I look forward getting to work with these young tenacious mighty Roosters.

A special thank you to Andrea for all her hard work during the week and on game day. Thanks to Dave Hall for umpiring: Zoran, Craig & Mark for all their help at training and on game day. See you all on the next cold Sunday morning.

Next Game: vs St Bernards: ​Sun 21st May / 8:50 AM / Shorten Reserve

 

Under 11s

Coming Soon  (Sorry)!

 

Round 5 – Sunshine Heights

 

Mother’s Day saw our undefeated Rooster’s take on the undefeated Sunshine Heights in an eagerly anticipated top of the table clash.  The late withdrawals of Abdullah and Bailey left the side down on rotations, although none of the thirst for the contest diminished.

 

Some work at training on clearing space in the forward line and avoiding shooting from the pockets allowed a ‘straightening up’ of sorts to be the focus.  Captain for the day Sam, was faced with not one, not two, but three co-captains from the opposition – this combined with 2 coaches suggested that the home side were up for a good old fashioned stare off.

 

The early clearances went the way of Sunshine Heights and as if to hammer the point home to the visiting Roosters they quickly scored their first goal.  It was certainly game on.

 

The midfield brigade of Lenny, Jonathan, Liam and Zidane, combined with our wingers, Henry, Diesel and Isaac C – got enough supply into the forward line to see the Roosters hit the scoreboard, courtesy of an excellent centring kick from Diesel to Nav, and this enabled some ‘not seen before’ pressure applied to the Heights.  I daresay, this was something that they did not appreciate one iota. Kailey battled manfully in the ruck and was rewarded with a free kick that he coolly slotted from the pocket thus putting the Roosters in front!

 

The quarter time breather came at just the right moment.  The chance to refocus and get some water was gratefully appreciated as the pace and tempo of the game was akin to something expected in the post-season, a point not lost on some of the seasoned spectators.  It was felt our back six of Luis, Daniel, Isaac T, Ben, Samuel and Leo, whilst all sticking to their task admirably could have done with some more support.  The mids were told prior to the game that defensive running was the order of the day and whilst it happened at times, this is a lesson we need to heed for the next time these two quality outfits face off. The boys all responded, with great tackles by Diesel, shepherds by Isaac C, and a big smother from Henry in the back half starting a great passage of play all the way to our goal square for a …point. Later, at the other end the goal umpire had his eyes shut and didn’t see the Roosters many hands touch the ball, he unbelievably signalled a goal to Sunshine Heights.

 

The scoreboard continued to eke away from the visiting Roosters, however that didn’t dull the determination and effort.  The next couple of quarters saw goals registered, yet some bad turnovers and continued missed tackles allowed the home side to keep us at bay.  The continued efforts of Navindu, Socrates, Juma and Lachie, mixed in with fine contests by Alex who had a great game at both ends of the ground and kicked his second goal. Socrates finished off some desperate play with a goal right in the square only to be mugged by their fullback who lost it when Juma and Liam came to Soc’s aid. Liam kicked the resulting free out of the ground for a another goal and the Roosters had closed the gap. It remained a hot contest, despite the scores on the board stretching out again.

 

Whilst fatigue was kicking in, the West Footscray boys willed their way to winning several one on ones, and certainly held their own in the face of some slick opposition.  A few moves allowed some well-earned breathers and the opportunity for others to take up the battle – again, the red and whites refused to yield.  As the pace of the game slowed in the last, we kept up a level of intensity that produced scoring chances, however we didn’t capitalise, resulting in a 42 point win to Sunshine Heights.

 

Huge credit needs to go to all the boys who donned the jumper today.  Not only did we get the contest we craved, but we also left with the knowledge that tightening up a few things could see a very different result next time.  Rest up boys, the bruises were well earned and the challenges don’t get any smaller next week.


Newsletter May 11

Good Evening Roosters,

What a cracking weekend of football! All of our teams got the chocolates. Our 11s and 13s are sitting second on their respective ladders and our younger brigade are becoming quite the formidable outfits. I know I say it every week, but a massive thanks to all those that volunteered on Sunday. Superstars! Each and every one of you.

Fundraising Chocolates

If you haven’t grabbed a box off your team manager, could you please do so. These chocolates raise a lot of money for the Juniors, and if your work mates are anything like mine, they are really easy to sell!

 

Footballs and Equipment

We are going to ask that children bring their own football to kick before and after training.  We will no longer make the club balls available for this purpose. The reason for this is that unfortunately we have had many balls disappear on training nights. The junior Committee have invested a lot of money into training equipment this season and don’t wish to have to replace missing balls. At the rate at which they are disappearing, we will have difficulty in running training by seasons end. If you are to bring your own ball, could you please clearly label it with your child’s name.

 

Training Nights

 

I noticed quite a few cars returning to the ground at the conclusion of training  on Wednesday night. The Junior Committee would like to remind parents that they are not to drop off their children at training without having organised someone there to supervise them. If your child should be injured at training we do not wish to have to  find you. Training is provided by the club to improve and enhance your child’s football skills and knowledge. It is not to be used as a child care service.

Night Game

I can happily inform you that a second night game for this season has been locked in. Richie’s Under 9 Reds will lock horns with Williamstown on Friday July 7th. We hope to confirm one more night game to be played in Round 14. We will give you the details as soon as this game is confirmed.

This Weeks Matches

The planets have aligned and for the only time this season there will be no junior teams playing at home. Please check the fixtures on our website for ground locations and game times.
Please be at the game and report to your team manager at least 50 minutes prior to the game starting.
Under 11s and 13s. Please remember to wear your white away shorts.

Match Reports

The much anticipated match reports are now up on our website. Check them out here.
Thanks to all those that have sent me pictures. I’d still like to see more of them, particularly from the top age teams. We can’t stick them all up in the match reports but we plan on making a large gallery on the website at seasons end so you can all flick through them.

Friday Night Canteen

The canteen should be back in full swing this Friday night as hopefully the council have finished installing the new deep fryer. We would love to see a few new parents stick around to grab a bite to eat and a drink. Get your kids to bring their footy cards to swap.  There should be some quality spare cards up for trade.

Special Rounds

The Junior Committee and Team Managers are planning a few special rounds for later in the season. These will take place in rounds where all of our junior teams are playing at home. More info about this will be in future newsletters.

 

That’s all for this week.

Have a wonderful Mother’s Day all of you Rooster Mums.

Damian


Round 4 2017

WEST FOOTSCRAY ROOSTERS - Under 9 Reds vs. Newport Power – Round Four - 7/5/17.

“The Department of Youth”

Wow Sports fans!  What a cracking game of football it was. The Niner’s rolled back into to town this week after notching their first win and were hungry for more. Shorten Reserve, bathed in resplendent sunshine, set the scene for what would be an epic battle. “Wins” don’t come easy and it is certainly isn’t made any easier up against a side like Newport Power.  Another team nestled on the Williamstown Road fault line, Newport are ornery critters! They love a good scrap, but you shouldn’t throw scraps at Roosters, especially not hungry ones!

Once again we were at full strength which meant three quarters of football each. Getting the balance of youth and experience right is our challenge and by giving experience to the youth, makes the challenge easier. As each game passes, we get to see everyone take that little extra step forward. Everyone is different and develops differently to the next player. It might not seem like much, but out in the middle, a tackle here a knock on there a quick kick out of congestion gives that little bit more confidence that says “Hey, I can do this”.

Let me give you a couple of quick examples; Lace-out-Lacey will have to change his nickname to Lace-up-Lacey. I lost count of how many tackles he layed today that stopped their momentum. Otto kicked his first goal through sheer forward pressure and persistence; he chased, caused the turnover, he kicked the goal!

Now let’s get down to business. Captains for the day would be Iggy and Harry. After another quick round of “guess in which hand is the umpires whistle” in which Newport guessed right, we were kicking to the car park.

The first quarter saw the Roosters pick up where they left off last week and dominate the play. Xavier would open the proceedings after pouncing on a loose ball and slotted the first one home. Again the mercy rule meant nothing to the hungry Roosters who refused Newport any forward entry. Riley is really finding his feet now as a menacing tall, Sasha the Dasher was relentless and desperate. Max “more than a” Phelan is smooth moving cat. He would take a great mark in front of goal and coolly pop it through. Archie and Xavier would round out the first quarter rout with beautiful running snaps for goals.

Just like last week, the second quarter saw the rotations swing back the momentum to the opposition. We expect this though. It is the best way to let everyone try and get their hands on the ball. Newport switched the power back on and managed to kick four goals. The difference from last week and the most pleasing aspect was that we were still able to get the ball forward to our little maestro Jami who kicked two goals against the tide. Louis was monumental; in my opinion his best game to date. Tackling, chasing, intercept marks, he did it all today. Well done Mate! Half time had us still in front on the back of a great team effort. Time for oranges and more rotations.

The third quarter was much like the second except we did not manage to score, even though we were a lot more competitive. Diesel (Jack Mosca) is a smart footballer much like his nick-namesake would suggest, for those of you old enough to remember!  Dylan, Jack G, Jack P, Oliver and Oscar were all battling hard in the forward line, Sasha and Archie were hard at work down back but it was not enough to stop Newport wrestling the lead into their favour. I told you they were ornery, the Power were buzzing and could smell victory.

The Forth Quarter would again bring the fresh legs and with it some more experience. If Newport thought that this game was theirs, they had better think again. Just as our newer teammates are making progress, so too are our older boys. This term would see Luca and Aiden step up to the plate and take matters into their own hands. Both boys were terrific were first and second efforts. I reckon Harry eats batteries for breakfast; he just keeps on keeping on. If there was a league stat for stealing the ball off the boot of an opposition player, he would be leading it. The Roosters were winding up now. Jackson was on the ball and getting busy, Iggy was at CHF and presenting well , Abby put the pressure on and got a few hand balls away and the back line was rock solid with a pair of  Mullaly’s blessed with natural speed. Clara’s attack and ball gathering is outstanding. We were also trialling another nick name today with Noah now known as “Dozer” getting his hands dirty in the middle with some great run and carry and as mentioned earlier Otto would kick his first goal. Just like in the first quarter, Xavier and Archie would both kick running goals with Xav dobbing his from the pocket if you don’t mind!

The siren would sound. At each break I would ask “who watched the Doggies last night”? I think they all did! There is nothing sweeter than a come from behind victory in a game in which we do not score (61–48)! And especially one against tough contested ball side like Newport.

“We’re the Department of Youth” “Who’s got the Power?” “WE HAVE”!

The Niner’s bus rolls back out of town this weekend with another tough assignment on the road pencilled in against Altona.

Special thanks to everyone who filled the volunteered roles, and to those who cheered us on, we can’t do this without you, it is most appreciated.

Richie and Kane.

Round 4 - Home to Hoppers Crossing Warriors.

 

I had nearly lost my voice the night before as I rode the emotional roller coaster of the Bulldogs last quarter efforts and victory.

Today we were in front of Home Supporters, who were basking in Autumn sun and the joy of a home win by the Under 9 Reds - it was easy to get excited by our own possibilities, a chance to build on a good performance last week.

(Our last weeks game was very close - only a point in it.  We thought we had won, but so did Caroline Springs..)

 

Our Co-Captains for this week were Griffin Barker and Sophia Cowall.

 

1st Quarter;

I was sure the game was to start at 10:50, but Hoppers Crossing was on the field and in positions as we finished our warm-up.  Luckily the Team knew what I was asking for - spread out, play keepy-off when we have the ball and find an opposition player when we don't.

After we got a hurry up from the umpire - we were on the field, and it was the Roosters who started the best.

We kept good distance between each other, moved the ball quickly by hand to good options sideways - then the kick forward.  We were taking marks all over the ground.

The ball was going our way and our forward pressure especially by Mitchell and Felix, ment we able to lock it in our 50.

Our efforts were rewarded with a goal to Griffin(C).

Further forward pressure ended with Malik providing a holding-the-ball tackle.  He converted his shot at goal from his free kick.

Maya laid terrific tackles, stopping the Hoppers Crossing forward plays and rarely letting the ball get past her. Her Ruck work later in the game was also impressive.

The Team had certainly lifted – Miles was having his best game : confident under marks and busting out of packs.

Mrinal kept his position, used the ball well - including knocking the ball out of congestion to keep it moving our way.

 

2nd Quarter;

I'm not sure if we relaxed, Hoppers Crossing lifted, or both – but the game evened up.

We were not without effort – just not as efficient or effective with the ball.

When Hoppers had the ball, they were doing to us what we had been doing to them – kicking to players in space.

It was a battle in the midfields, with not much ball in either forward 50.

We were still marking well – particularly Jake (Birthday Boy), Griffin(C), Efe and Miles.  Best of all was Malik and Oscar, who were throwing themselves amongst the packs.

Jake, Hadi and Max stood tall under pressure from the opposition.

Kai had important touches in defence and attack.  Nathaniel kept in good spaces going forward and closely watched an opponent in defence - he was rewarded with possessions.

Sophia(C), Noah and Efe kept going in for the ball.

Mitchell laid another great tackle in our forward line and the ball finished the Quarter down our end.

 

3rd Quarter;

The long break didn't help us – the tide had turned.It now wasn't so much an even game – Hoppers was now on top!

We were drawn too close to the ball, trying to win it back.  We were bunched up and lost our shape.  We were crashing into each other, getting in each other's way and going for the same mark. And when we did get the ball, there was no-one forward to kick it to – Griff(C) was hand balling over-the-top to himself...

We were in full defensive mode.

Arlo M stood strong as the ball and opposition came rushing towards him.

Alex was going for his marks and watching for his opponent.

Hadi followed the packs all day and did his best to force the ball our way.

Sophia(C) was running hard to chase down the ball and opponents.

Miles did well in the Ruck.

Felix and Eli used their pace to get to the ball, but it was mostly in a defensive act.

Mitchell was trying hard and Oscar kept flying for any mark.

Hoppers had outscored us this quarter and the last – they were now in front on the scoreboard and had the momentum.

The things we did so well in the 1st quarter, we weren't doing any more.

 

4th Quarter;

I called for a "Big Effort". Get the ball, spread out and play keepy-off - just like we did so well at the start of the game.

I wasn't sure if we had enough legs left (were our water boys right?).

Mitchell and Oscar were on our wings – giving our wide option.  Malik kept a kick forward of the play.  Jake and Griff(C) were communicating in the midfield.  Things were clicking again - a bit of time, space and providing options.

Our fast feet brigade – Arti, Felix, Oscar and Eli were now running forward and linking with our marking options – Jake, Griff(C), Maya, Miles and Malik.  We were looking for our next pass option and supporting each other around the ball.

Efe found his form from last week again, finding space and the ball.

Nathaniel provided good options in space and took some marks.

Oscar got reward for good forward positioning – taking a mark and kicking a goal.

The game was now close.

The ball didn't get through our defence – Maya, Alex and Noah especially.

Noah was unlucky not to be paid a great effort at a contested mark.

Mitchell, Jake, Oscar & Malik had a lot of the ball It went into our 50.  Arlo S-T lead back to goal and took a great mark, close to goal, on an angle. Arlo steadied, took his kick - and got his goal.  A 2-fist-in-the-air celebration followed, for what turned out to be the match winner.

The siren sounded with Malik going for yet another mark.

The Team was understandably and suitably excited - no question on the result today!

 

Special Mentions;

  • For Best Game so far this year – the whole Team. Well done everyone.
  • Happy Birthday Jake.
  • Focus for next week; What we did well in the 1st and last quarters.

 

Thankyou to all our Helpers, especially

Paul - for helping as trainer/ runner.

Ash - filling in as umpire (you were clear and fair with your calls)

Photographers – great to see more images

Writers – for helping with our game notes.

Monique – for arranging so much of our Game Day duties.

 

See you next week – Away to Tarneit.  Please be there for 8:00am.

 

 

Regards,

Paul

 

Under 10s Match Report Round 4 PEGS v West Footscray at PEGS

 

‘How’s the serenity?’ we mused as we journeyed out to the third runway to take on PEGS.  It’s a pristine ground with superb facilities and the added bonus of a free air-show featuring frequent low flying kangaroos, predictably accompanied by a gale force wind.

 

Despite the wind and the cold, the sun shone brightly as our little roosters took to the ground.  Being without an umpire AGAIN meant the PEGS coach had to step up and although we were unable to provide him with a Wests counterpart I’m proud to say the $4 Best & Less white t-shirt he wore was supplied by us.  It possibly wasn’t the worst week to be without an umpire as this young buck was a Seniors footballer from PEGS and the mental image of him donning a snugly fitting Aston Villa-esque guernsey was not entirely displeasing.  But I digress.

 

Our own coach implored his charges to improve from last week by increasing the shepherding and holding our structure.  This proved to be handy advice as the first quarter was a tense back and forth tussle between two evenly matched sides.  PEGS had the better of us out of the blocks, applying ferocious tackling and consistently moving the ball into their forward line.  Some great physical work by Nicholas and Ziggy with smothering and tackling, Ashton with quick pack clearances and Paddy barrelling in and under stopped the regular threat of scoring.  Manny patrolled the centre and regularly passed to Hamish whose first quarter set the tone for a high quality match, pouncing on anything loose and doing his upmost to send the ball in our forward direction.  PEGS weren’t going to be so easily dismissed, but thankfully some brilliant defensive work from Zaw Zaw saved 3 goals and when Alex marked and goaled with seconds to go we went into the first quarter break a goal up, sneaking in front of PEGS who up until then had the better of us.

 

I apologise for this break in transmission for an occupational health and safety reminder.  One of our boys had to come off the ground to remove a hoodie from under his guernsey.  There is a league rule that the kids are not to play in hoodies for a very good reason – it’s dangerous.  Please remind your kids of this rule.  However I’ve also noted a number of boys, including my own, training in hoodies.  This is really dangerous practice.  Yes it’s cold, yes they wear the red and white with pride but please speak with the boys about how dangerous it is if they are accidentally grabbed by the hood.  Now back to the footy…

 

The quarter time address summed up our first term as sloppy and our boys were urged for more of everything: tackling, shepherding, attention and pressure.  They responded by immediately lifting at the start of the second to counter PEGS’ attack with the wind.  Reuben worked hard in the face of intense pressure – one suspects the opposition scouts had targeted our slick midfielder and he was double/triple/quadruple-teamed every time he scooped up the ball, without ever giving up.  After an opening quarter on the pine Benny was injected into the mix and with quick hands and even quicker feet he was regularly moving the ball forward, consistently putting the ball in the hands of Joharo.  Eli and Kiir threatened up forward making life difficult for the PEGS defence.  Meanwhile Leo, Moses, Tem and Zeke held up the half back line stopping any movement forward for PEGS.  Our boys went into half time with a spring in their collective step having kept PEGS to a scoreless 2nd quarter kicking with the wind.

 

Over the munching of oranges Des asked for even more pressure and attention to our structure – stop the finessing and keep it simple; just pick up the ball and kick it.  As the 3rd quarter began our tackling stepped up another level with Flynn terrifying the opposition with his ferocious determination.  Rory found his way into the action, directing some great team combinations enabling the ball to weave its way into ever reliable goal-kicking machine Noah’s arms; the result was a foregone conclusion.  After the centre clearance Rory booted the ball into our forward line again, then followed up with 2 great tackles and finished this superb piece of play with a goal himself – a beautiful example of reward for effort.

 

At ¾ time Des engaged in psychological warfare noting that the opposition’s heads had dropped and it was time to turn the screws.  Out we came to finish them off and it was Joharo who led the way, capping off his best game so far this season.  Kicking with the wind PEGS scored their first and only goal for the game but not without some intense pressure from our defence including some sublime blocking from Marlon.  As the clock on the very impressive PEGS scoreboard wound down the result was beyond doubt but in the dying seconds Nicholas kicked his first ever goal for the club; a truly joyous moment.

 

Look I’m not going to lie, this was a scrappy game.  PEGS were a much tougher competitor than the scoreline implies and we weren’t at our best.  But there’s a magical quality with good teams; they find a way to win when things aren’t necessarily going their way.  Great job Des who tapped into the momentum of the game and coached the boys to perfection.  Huge thanks to all the parents who keep volunteering week after week.

 

Congratulations to Hamish Vlaeminck, a well-deserved Heartland Award winner.

 

Goals: Alex 2, Rory, Nicholas, Noah 1

 

 

Under 11 Division 2

Round 4 St. Albans vs West Footscray

 

8:50 am? Is this some sort of sick joke? I had assumed that the Under 11s wouldn’t be subjected to that ungodly time slot this year. Apparently I was wrong. That happens on the odd rare occasion. Full of hate for the league, I made my way to the ground. Driving by my favourite skate park, which incidentally was empty (insert sobbing adult noise here), it was hard to be enthused. We arrived at the ground before anyone else (standard operating procedure) to find Kings Park Reserve to be damp, cold and rather uninviting. Thankfully our kids had played St. Albans roughly 37 times last season, so we knew where to go. The visitors’ rooms were unlocked and we were greeted with that old damp, musty smell that was a mix of wet cat and cheese. It reminded me of my early years as a renter. This time however I wouldn’t have to step over anyone to get inside. Spirits slightly lifted! Not long after our boys began to arrive as did the team from St. Albans. All were available this week with the exception of Christian who was nursing an injured finger from training. That was a big disappointment as he was clearly getting in the mood during the second half of the previous weeks fixture. We would need two captains. Nathaniel and Xavier got the gig thanks to their fine team efforts the week prior. Their first duty would be to pick the match ball. Some indecision from the boys in doing this. Thankfully the 20+ kids behind them were yelling advice. Ball picked………..Let’s play some football!

 

Someone won the toss and picked a direction. I have no idea who that was, but as a result we would kick to the Las Vegas end of the ground. St. Albans had caught us napping in our 85th and final meeting last year. Would the result be reversed this time? Are the boys awake? They shouldn’t be! It’s 8:50 am! No one should be!

The ball went up and our boys were indeed awake. Kadin won the tap and put it straight down Jacks throat. He took off like he’d stolen something and smashed it into our forward line. The ball cannoned through a few sets of hands before hitting the turf. Murphy then hit it at a million miles an hour and snapped at goal. BANG! GOAL! The boys looked pretty pleased with that. The clock showed a grand total of 10 seconds had been played. Yep.  They’re awake alright! Cooper was starting in the middle this week and was back to his bullocking best. Weston was hitting team mates with pin point passing. Vinh was mopping up everything that got beyond the middle and sending it straight back. Kadin was dominating the ruck and giving our mids first use of the ball. Sean (the hi-vis man) was loving the wide flanks. Xavier (the doona) was locking the ball in. St Albans were under siege and not even Steven Segal could help them. Jack added our second midway through the first in his usual frantic attack on the ball. Micky got his hands on it early and was using it well. Felix is a machine. His tackles, chases and a booming left foot were a treat to watch. Sass was injected into the game for his debut game and had the pill in his hands within seconds of taking the field. Brilliant! Time after time we surged forward. Elijah Moon was attracting the ball at centre half forward like a magnet. What he missed (not much) was mopped up by Murphy who was on fire at half forward. Just before the break Weston found himself with the ball, space and time, and a clear run at the sticks perfectly setup for his lethal left boot. Boom! That’s 3. Cracking football boys.

 

Quarter time St. Albans 0.0.0 vs West Footscray 3.3.21

 

The second term saw players shuffled around. The backs had hardly seen it in the first and were given the chance to get their shorts dirty. I might have moved them too much as now St. Albans looked far more lively kicking to the Keno end of the ground. The irony of it. Now our backs would get warm with hard work whilst our forwards were standing around. Alek was amazing. He’s an awesome backman and won contest after contest for the Roosters. Frank was everywhere. His improvement this year has been amazing and his addition to the midfield a massive boost for the team. Samuel is a quiet accumulator of possessions. He seems to get to almost every contest. His tackling is fantastic and won us the ball on numerous occasions. Zach (the blanket) was brilliant. He’s a little battering ram and had the boys from St. Albans second guessing the value of taking possession of the ball. Leroy seemed intent on doing it even better. Fast and low, right at the hips. His tackles are unbreakable and his reward would be free kicks, a pile of vanquished opponents and a nickname (The Convincer). There was some forward line action for our boys. Murphy, Weston, Frank and Vinh kept smacking it in. Angus was a big target deep in the forward line. He got his hands on it but the congested area made it hard to find space. Nathaniel was giving it 100% and doing all the 1%’s. Tito was looking busy as well. Still we couldn’t snag that goal.

 

Half time St. Albans 1.1.7 vs West Footscray 3.3.21

 

The wind had picked up a bit in the third. It wasn’t really favouring either end but a crafty coach tried to convince his boys that it was. Clearly a two goal breeze blowing to the Tabaret end. They didn’t appear to be buying this line, but the coach persisted anyway. Yash moved into the ruck after an awesome first half on a back flank. Careful Yash. Great defensive work might make you a regular down there. He won the first tap in the ruck and most of the others that followed. Jack was on fire. So was Weston. Kadin had been given a wing and was loving the freedom. Aaron was down forward this term and looked the goods. It’s amazing how the sniff of a goal opportunity can spark them up! The first of the third would come off the boot of Yash. On fire and on the run. It was always going through the big sticks.  Great goal Yash. We were peppering the goals but St. Albans refused to roll over. Felix was a blur. He was in everything. Cooper was pumping it long and our forwards looked certain to cash in. Xavier got loads of it. Murphy continued to burn the turf. Elijah Moon got hurt again! Eventually Jack got the ball with time to burn. That’s bad news for most teams and St. Albans would not escape his love of a goal. His team mates begging for the ball would look on as it sailed through for his second of the day. St. Albans continued to defend valiantly and made a few forays forward. They were quickly repelled by our back 6 who never looked like conceding a goal. Right on the siren Murphy would rip the ball from and a pack and roost a snap straight through the middle only to have it disallowed due to a free kick payed to St. Albans. Shocking decision and the WRFL will hear about it! Great term gents!

 

3 Quarter Time St. Albans 1.1.7 vs West Footscray 5.7.37

 

Would St. Albans be able to respond? Have I run out of gambling references? The answer to both of these questions is possibly. The breeze was now favouring an end.  Ours! Woot! Alek got a run in the middle and was moving with renewed vigour. St. Albans were industrious and found themselves deep in their forward line at the $2 scratchy end but couldn’t get that goal. Great defending made it an impossible task. Yash was playing out of his skin. He had the ball on a string like a yo-yo. Clearly that is a dated reference that most of these children are far too young to understand. I apologise, but I can’t work a spinner (why do they even exist?) in to this report. Samuel and Frank kept banging away. Angus and Tito looked closer than ever to their first goals of the year. Weston had tired of gaining countless possessions and had now added some Harlem Globetrotter style taps to his bag of tricks. It’s a big bag and he’s still yet to produce the handball to himself this year. Perhaps he’s found some better options? Goals are a good option. He found one of those after marking in our forward line. He coolly slotted the set shot for his second of the day. A few other things happened that I should report, but as is usually the case I am writing this at the last minute and still have the newsletter to do! When will I learn!

 

Full Time St. Albans 1.2.8 vs West Footscray 6.10.46

 

Great game boys, in particular Yash who picked up his first Heartland Award for a fantastic game. 4 Rounds in and we are in second spot on the ladder. The training drills are really starting to show up I the games now. Still lots of room for improvement which is great. Wyndhamvale await his week. I don’t even know where that is. Sounds made up quite frankly. I hope it’s real. I can’t wait to see another weeks’ worth of improvement. Well done.

 

Damian

West Footscray Roosters under 13’s v St Albans, 7 May, 2017

 

Writing match reports can be tough. You need a bit of colour, a bit of spice from the crowd to add a little mayonnaise to the glorious on-field efforts. The Daily Show’s John Stewart once did a segment: “Being a comedian is a lonesome business… sometimes you can lose hope… and then a Presidential candidate comes along and utters that glorious four letter word… ‘oops’.”

 

Surely the crowd would deliver some colour for me today. It was second-top v bottom. The pre-match hype wasn’t quite up there with a Collingwood-Carlton blockbuster. The St Albans warm up didn’t bode well… contrasting with the mighty Roosters who looked sharp and ready to run and rumble.

 

Kings Park St Albans was the sight of the very first win for a lot of these Roosters players four (?) years ago. The memorable mud pit (aka cricket pitch area) from last year was gone, covered by grass, delightful grass.

 

Underway in sunny conditions, the Roosters immediately drove the Sherrin forward thanks to the super-boot of Zidane, who is part Labrador puppy, part Yogi bear (no help from the crowd for that one, but their help will come, surely…) Diesel got on the end of it for a great goal. He’s the favourite of my two Aboriginal aunties who were visiting all the way from Utopia in the Northern Territory. “We like that one, number 11…, and number 3 of course”.

 

Alex took a great defensive mark in front of his player. Samuel tried to kick one from 40 metres with the breeze, but it almost ended up in Cairnlea. Henry kicked a great goal with his raking left foot, and then won a three-on-one contest on the outer wing. Ben was getting his running game going, and getting used to his longer legs, which appear to have grown three cm’s since last game. Luis got some nice early touches, helping Socrates to kick a very classy goal. Soc is having quite a season, backing it up with enormous pressure which enabled Navindu to swoop and kick long to Isaac C for a mark and goal.

 

#9 for St Albans is tall, athletic and competitive – he managed to run down Zidane. #4 and #1 for St Albans were probably under 11’s but they both played terrific games for the home side. Very neat skills and quick running.

 

The second quarter saw St Albans lift their intensity after what our water-woman, Liza described as… well, no she refused to actually mention what their coach said… we move on, back to the action. Isaac T kicked well in to the forward 50 for Henry, then on to Daniel who kicked a long, long poster. Almost a great goal. We kept the ball in there and Alex Q managed to mop up to get himself on the board with a goal. It was set up nicely thanks to Lachlan D’s mark and hard running. Zidane was prominent, and the half backs of Samuel, Leo, Lenny, Jonathan and Ben were ensuring the ball was being played in our half.

 

Soc was the next to get on the end of one, a long kick in from Liam. Daniel also kicked a great goal after a delightful Diesel dish-off. Shortly after, Diesel almost knocked himself out when going for a chest mark that hit him in the scone. My aunties looked on anxiously. Then I heard: “#11 ok, he’s back up.” I think Diesel reminds them of their nephew Junior J Bird who plays for the Territory Thunder.

Abdullah kicked well in to the forward line, again finding Soc (or does Soc find the ball?), for another goal. Liam played on quickly desperate for a goal himself, but to no avail this time. The backline were shivering.

 

The 3rd quarter saw us master the art of kicking points. Henry had a great contest at one stage against their best player, #9. Isaac T did a 450 degree turn, perhaps even a pirouette, to swing on to his right foot setting up a goal to Navindu.

No great heights were reached in the 3rd quarter. The opposition kicked a point, which was a blessing really, because it allowed a very good, clean passage of play down the Pokies Room Wing: Liam on to Zidane, Diesel, Samuel, Luis and then out on the full. Nice build up…

 

#9 thought he’d do his own run down the non-Pokies wing, and what a run it was, right in front of his coach. Six or seven bounces, and the Roosters were struggling to catch him. He was eventually brought down, a bit like Ned Kelly at Glenrowan (minus the suit of armor, bank robberies and botched train derailment) by a combination of Liam, Jonathan and Zidane. He, too, really wanted a goal, but in the end got dragged by his coach for trying to do it all himself. The ball quickly returned to our forward 50 thanks to Alex Q who enabled Samuel to mark and goal. Isaac T followed this up with an excellent point.

 

At 3 quarter time I implored the crowd to lift. Please, give me something. Liza, secure in her Water Woman’s designated zone (we weren’t allowed in there) mentioned that Diesel had brought extra fridge magnets for the coach, as promised. What a thoughtful and yet slightly cheeky child is #11, a fan favourite. There were other vague murmurings about how Daniel has a lot of strength in his calves, but not so much in his core. Kailey’s dad, Simon, gave me nothing, despite being singled out at 3 qtr time to lift. Daniel and Kailey were both having good games by the way.

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In the real 3 qtr time huddle, coach Tim Grant was imploring his young chargers not to clog up the forward line. We’d kicked 10 goals and 19 behinds. A goal to St Albans at the start of the last quarter generated a big cheer. Juma then got in front of his opponent and took a good mark in the goal square after a slick handpass from Soc set up a long Samuel kick. Lachlan, Navindu, Liam, Jonathan and Henry were all prominent in the final stanza, with Navindu and Henry adding to their goal tally.

 

The crowd banter had lifted a bit in the last quarter, coming off a low base, let’s be frank. Liza suggested we get “3, 4, 5” t’shirts for the players, celebrating their new zone defence mantra. Michael suggested Daniel could chase the chicken, ala Rocky Balboa, in order to improve his core strength. Sue and Shaun were non-committal.

 

Finally, just as the blessed relief of the final siren was about to blow, some bloke in the crowd gave me a bit of gold: “Geez, look at the mullet on that St Alban’s kid. That’s one to aspire to.” Luis had the final play of the day, a great run down the Pokies Wing, only for his kick to be intercepted by mullet-kid.

 

The Heartland Award went to Jonathan Stelluto who has strung together a few great games for the Roosters this season. Tougher opposition next week, lads.

 

 

Final scores: 13.22.100 def St. Albans 1.3.9

 

Goal kickers:  ​Socrates 3, Navindu 2, Henry 2, Samuel 1, Diesel 1, Isaac C 1, Alex Q 1, Juma 1, Daniel 1