I went up to Fuchu to umpire the match played between the Japanese boys yesterday and I must say, the Samurais are looking good. A resounding victory to the tune of 99 points, has set the scene for what I expect to be a memorable grand final. The skill and stamina of these guys and even their ability to read the game has improved dramatically since their trip to Melbourne. Coach Beard has instilled a confidence into this team which is really showing and perhaps the visit to the finer establishments has made these boys believe they are MEN. Shiba bagged 8 goals 8 behinds in an excellent display in his first game back since his “hatsu gaijin”, however, the danger men were around the center with Kase dominating the ruck, Mos running lose everywhere and Fukkun (great name) gathering a million possessions playing some kind of wing roll. In the second quarter Yasu went down with an ankle injury and had to be taken to hospital. They say a 4 week recovery and I hope he can make it back for the GF. Yasu is a tireless worker promoting our game here in Tokyo among the Uni students and it would be a tragedy if he was not able to play in the Granny, so good luck for a speedy recovery.
Grand Final Information:
The game is scheduled for the 25th of November, however, it is dependant on the weather therefore the ground has been booked for the 2nd of December as well. It will be played at the NTT ground in Chiba, details how to get there will be sent out later. We have the ground from 12:00 to 4:00 and there will be a mini game played by the Gokons to preview the BIG ONE. Pre-game entertainment includes Jimmy Barnes, AC/DC, Rose Tattoo and Cameron Gordon so it should be a good warmup. At this stage only the last guy is confirmed, but we are working on it. The Grand Final this year will be played with 9 players on the ground and 6 reserves. Therefore if you want to play, I suggest you try to impress Coach Jones by turning up to a couple of training sessions he is planning. At last count we have 23 players so it means 8 guys wont be playing, however, there will be jobs for everyone on the day so please, if you don’t make the cut, do the right thing by the club and volunteer your services in some other area. We will be videoing this years granny, so we may be looking for some commentators. The game will be 4 x 20 minute quarters. The idea of time on was not passed this year. There will be an after match ceremony, details to follow. I am calling on all players to try to get into some form of training for the next six weeks, a bit of a jog wont hurt. Try to attend the organized training sessions, so as we may be able to plan some kind of attack on the Sams, without going in blind. We were defeated by a much better prepared team last year and we WILL NOT lose 2 years in a row. Show some Aussie Pride and let’s kick arse. A few personal calls: Donovan: marital bliss can only last so long son, it’s time to get your arse back on the ground. Travers: if you survived your last overseas trip, we need ya bud! Big Dave Brown: haven’t seen ya since you won the lucky draw, bring your family and Dave May down with you. Denny: I know the Cats had a shit year, make amends, come on down. Peter Daicos: if you are listening, we can squeeze you on the bench.
OK guys this is the Grand Final. It is time for you to start bringing friends, family, students, whoever. Build the atmosphere. Also you people on the mailing list (there are 250 of ya) that don’t come to any games, how about making an effort to get down to this one, the skills aren’t quite AFL standard but we put on a good show, so how about it?
That’s it guys, you know what needs to be done, let’s do it.