A Century of the Red & Black



Week 4: Xavs go big


Week 4: Xavs go big

April 27, 2024

RED 'n' BLACKS 10/11

Last week, nine wins. This week, for the first time since R1 in 2021 when the club was perfect, ten wins from eleven starts.


Dan Donati's team won by just 17 points at Brunswick Street after leading by 47 at the long break. The second half fade won't be celebrated, but in truth, the Xavs had played brilliantly earlier in the day against a team that is better than its record might suggest.

Fitzroy showed in the game's latter stages that its first Premier win is not too far away. However, the Red 'n' Blacks' early work ensured the premiership points were pocketed early. When the X-Men moved the ball verically and ran hard, they were unstoppable. Ed Delany up front was a great target, booting 4.5 for the day, while in defence, Ben Andrews again shone.

Again, it all began with big Alec Spralja in the ruck. His tireless performances each week are setting this team up and giving his midfielders a big head start. Stirling Phipps-Parsons was again a matchwinner, while debutant PJ Petrucci and second-gamer Makuc Mohammed did some very neat work in the forward setup, as did the linkman Julian Soccio.

Next week, a return to Toorak Park to meet the reigning premier, Collegians. After a rusty beginning to the season, Xavs have played some scintillating football at times in the past fortnight. However, it will need to play four solid quarters to knock over the Purples.

The other games in Round 3 of Premier football provided thrills and spills aplenty.

·     At Sportscover, Old Brighton (97) broke it openin the second half to send Old Melburnians (62) to their second loss on end

·     Lakeside, Collegians (51) won their first when theirstronger final term was enough to edge out previously unbeaten Old Scotch (48)

·     Under the spires, Uni Blacks (75) won a nailbiterover Uni Blues (70), who had led by 28 points at quarter time

·     At the Snakepit, St Bernard’s (112) belted StKevin’s (60) in a stunning performance


Nine goals to Harrison Bell fired a 13 goals to one second half, as the Red 'n' Blacks rumbled over the Roys at Brunswick Street. The Maroons led the way early and it wasn't until the second stanza that Dimitri's Gladiators took the lead. After the break, the momentum was all one way and the home team buckled under the pressure.


The WOX cleaned up the OMlettes at HQ with a fine early morning victory. Two in a row for the Red 'n' Blacks augurs well for the weeks ahead.


The WOX Twos defeated the Wickers in a clow scoring affair at Greythorn. They led at every change, but left their best 'til last, scoring 2.0 to zip in the final period to win their second on end.


Matthew Handley's charges ventured to Glen Huntly on Sunday for a showdown at noon. At place was a stake in the four, temporary of course, but nonetheless coveted even at this early stage of proceedings.

Old Xavs began brilliantly with the breeze at their backs to establish a strong ascendancy, and after a turn into the wind, went to the sheds with a four goal advantage. It was goal for goal beyond the long break, with the young X-Men taking home the points after holding a determined Fields lineup at bay in the final term.

Next week, a visit from St Bede's Mentone Tigers.


Charlie Christopher was best afield and slotted seven sausages as the 19 Twos rolled over the Hedgeburners on Bulleen Road. The result was never in doubt, with the X-Men leading at every turn.


Sam Turner and Gus Gorman booted three apiece, but the Red 'n' Blacks went down to a 97 point defeat at Stradbroke Park tofday. Lachie Dring was named BOG, but the home team never quite found their feet against a strong Willy outfit, which started well, finished well and looked challenged only for brief periods in the third term.

A big win for the U23s against a Blues team that will do some damage this year. Zak Connor, best afield, is in great form, and the team looks set for another big season.

See Bridget Wilson's gallery here

The Menages stayed happy with a narrow win over the Maroons n the dewkicker at Peterson Oval.

Savanna Villis pics here

The Emerald Hose soared over the Stationmasters with Josh Lyon bagging eleven in a best on ground effort. The Diles are off to a strong start and are firing on cylinders.

A tremendous win for the 23 Twos, rolling over the Cardinals by 39 points. Ollie Sheehan kicked three and got the votes for BOG in a stylish game.

See Bridget Wilson's gallery here


R3: Seniors @ Fitzroy