Well, it wasn't too pleasant a day down at the Uni last week. I caught the tram in to avoid the parking problems, intending to go to the lunch by some old friends who had made education their career. I was told too that I'd be doing a guest spot on radio, but there was nary a knife and fork to be seen and Kenny Petrucco and his team had decided to go elsewhere.
So I had to settle for a pie from the Blues canteen. Some have accused Blues of being an inconsistent football team, but the same cannot be said of the pies. For the umpteenth time in a row, the delicacy burned my mouth and I'm still suffering.
I noticed that despite the spanking new facilities, there seemed to be trouble putting the statisticians in a convenient spot, issues between club officials and general disorganisation. It probably didn't help matters that I got involved in the discussions. I told someone from Blues that we hadn't experienced these issues last year at Ransford, and that perhaps they should think about shifting all of their home games to that beautiful venue.
Anyway, I settled back to watch the Red 'n' Blacks, but the run of play from the first bounce of the Twos unsettled me. It was a dog of a day, apart from the afternoon tea, which went down a treat. Not as good as the fare presented at Toorak Park, but what is?
A friendly observer (must have been a Xaverian fan) kept me in touch with scores from other grounds, and as the afternoon wore on, these were a lot more interesting than the game before me. Watching the Xavs lose isn't much fun. And I don't know what to make of the red jumpers. At times I felt like cheering for the home team, as my mind wandered and I thought they were playing against Old Scotch. Oh well, modern football . . .
Happily the Red and Blacks are this week the Black and Reds again as they take on the Beaumarists. Terry Rogers tells me that this week's visitors to Toorak Park are the only team that wears a sash running diagonally from the right shoulder of its guernsey. I remember well South Melbourne adopting that very same style, but that was in 1907. Richmond also had the sash from the right in the early days. Both switched. Beauy hasn't, and good luck to them.
Right sash or left, the Sharks must be getting hungry, after going without a win all year. It's probably unfortunate timing that they meet the now-back-down-to-earth Xavs on Orrong Road. I don't think the home team will drop this one, if they play the way they should.
Collegians seem to be having no trouble playing they they can. They spanked the daylights out of St Kevin's, who lost the game, coughed up percentage and lost their second player through suspension in a fortnight. The Lions appear to be the team to beat right now, but these things change. I fear for De La Salle this week. Bernie Sheehy's team went down to St Bart's last week and couldn't get over the line, so even though back home, I believe they will go down again, and the Purples will roll on.
Uni Blues were certainly as hot as their pies last week. They seem to rise to the occasion against Old Xavs, but how will they fare this week on the road against the Grasshoppers? That big ground out at Bulleen tests a lot of teams and with the Green team finding some form last week, it could be a close contest. However, i sense that the Uni team, ably led by young Tom Girdwood, will get the points.
St Bart's will be delighted to stay home as Old Melburnians come in. The Dark Blues are getting great service from Cuddles Cordner and Rick Pisarski, and might have enough to win down there. The home team seems to rely on the Richards brothers Ted and Xavier (funny, I thought they were Barkers Road boys!), but I am told their stars are beginning to align. So I'll stick with the home club.
Uni Blacks are struggling, but with all those Costellos in the team, might inflict further pain on SKOB. How much pain remains to be seen. I don't know why i say this, but I have a funny feeling that things are about to change in this competition. I'm tipping Blacks. No, I'm just hoping.