Newell’s Notes Round 7 Greater Western Sydney Giants v St-Kilda 2019

Jezza Hudsonesque

He has the nickname similar to the leaping, legendary Carlton great Alex Jesaulenko, but for me Jeremy Cameron reminds me a lot of Hawthorn legend Peter Hudson. He’s no carbon copy of Huddo, but why I say this is Cameron has an uncanny knack of fashioning goals from nothing, similar to what Peter Hudson could do. And now with Jeremy leading the Coleman medal with 30 goals (Tom Lynch is behind by 13 goals) there is talk of a possible ton. Talk about hype, it would be nice and I’m sure he has the ability to do so. Wouldn’t it be great for Sydney footy, if Jezza kicked his 100th goal at Giants Stadium with the obligatory crowd on the field. It’s great to see a full forward booting bagfuls of goals in the modern era, something Peter Hudson would do regularly in the “good old days” of VFL footy.

VALE Mike Williamson

Mike Williamson was the greatest Australian rules football TV commentator in my opinion, with all due respect to Dennis Cometti and Bruce McAvaney. I grew up with Mike’s dramatic, colourful descriptions of the then Victorian Football League. He called the big finals games in such a compelling manner and during his time there were some massive games. The 1966 grand final between St-Kilda and Collingwood in which Barry Breen’s wobbling kick for a behind won the club’s first ever flag. Williamson’s call still retains a level of excitement and drama. The thrilling last quarter of the 1967 grand final between Geelong and Richmond was also a great call by Mike. But for me the best ever game called by Mike Williamson, was the greatest game ever played in the history of VFL/AFL football, the 1970 grand final of Carlton and Collingwood. Throw in a record crowd of 121,696 and two amazing teams filled with talent. For Collingwood it was Peter McKenna, Len Thompson, Des Tuddenham and Barry Price, whilst for Carlton, Brent Croswell, David McKay, John Nicholls and Alex Jesaulenko were their stars. Williamson’s infamous description of the Jezza screamer “on the wing position on the members stand side” is pure poetry. But his call throughout this game is remarkable. Throw in the incredible 44 point comeback from Carlton and there was plenty of material for Mike to work with. He worked beautifully with Alan “Butch” Gale and Ted “Mr Football” Whitten and despite the drama there was plenty of humour. He hosted the authoritative football TV show Pelacco Football Inquest which puts to shame today’s lame one sided football shows of media spin and shtick. Those shows were raw and players honest, old school TV.

Mike Williamson a legendary VFL TV football commentator. Image source: The Age

Sadly in 1977 Mike Williamson disappeared from our Channel 7 VFL grand final calls. Former ABC TV caller, Peter Ewin was made the main commentator and with all due respect, was no comparison to Mike. Luckily Lou Richards added the colour, but one wonders what would the 1977 Collingwood v North Melbourne draw have sounded like if Mike had called it. Would he have “tipped this” aka “we could be back here next week” as he would say during close grand finals. A nice touch made by several TV / Radio callers during the weekend games was the use of “You Beauty” a Mike Williamsonism. He passed away last week aged 91. Condolences to his family and friends, he will be missed, always remembered.

NB:  I’ve posted a You Tube link below of Mike Williamson’s call of the 1970 Second Semi final between Collingwood and Carlton. It was a shoot-out between Peter McKenna and Alex Jesaulenko. McKenna booted 9 goals and Jezza 8 incredible stuff. I was a kid perched high in the Western stand with my Dad and a mate of his. It was my first ever VFL finals game and will never forget it. Anyhow enjoy the call, it features classic Mike Williamson at his best.

St-Kilda much improved despite the loss

I am so impressed with the Saints this year. They have played some good football particularly the game against Melbourne a few weeks ago. Jack Steele has been brilliant. Tough in the contest, a tackling machine (currently 3rd in AFL tackles list), Jack has made a big difference. Seb Ross, and Jade Gresham have been good. Dean Kent has been a handy pick-up in the forward zone, he booted 2 goals and it could have been more on the weekend against the Giants. Alan Richardson has done a great job in shutting out the negativity that was being hurled at him and his club. Richo is a good football person, but importantly he has adjusted the team strategy and installed a level of commitment to the ball not seen in years at St-Kilda. The Saints were seriously back in this game after the Giants started with an 8 goal first term. Matthew Parker’s 3rd quarter front of goal miss was so costly. They will learn and improve, but St-Kilda aren’t the worst side in the competition at the moment. And lets hope Jack Steven returns soon to the squad. He was sorely missed on Saturday.

More resolve. The Saints are a better team this year. Photo: Jodie Newell

Plenty of Saints fans in the nation’s capital

I so enjoy the Canberra Giants games. There’s a festive mood pre-game in and around the streets of Griffith near Manuka Oval. The local coffee shops,restaurants and bars do a roaring trade with Giants and opposition supporters. Whether its a strong espresso or a coldie or shot of whiskey, The Canberra games are unique to the AFL fixture and I’d highly recommend anyone considering a trip to go. There are plenty of team colours on display from both teams. We ran into a super sharp looking Saints fan named Paul Kelly or “PK” as he likes to be known. He was with some mates enjoying some banter and a drink. Loved his St-Kilda themed suit, complete with matching pants, hat, shoes and bow-tie Brilliant!!

When the Saints go marching into Canberra. Paul “PK” Kelly pre-game. Photo: Jodie Newell

 

About the Author

Jodie Newell
Love reporting on sports, politics, history and music