I reviewed a North game a few weeks back, and Marley Williams took one of the worst dives I’ve seen this year. After barely being touched, he crumpled to the ground like an anaemic soccer player. You’d think that the ensuing criticism would be enough to ensure that every time your turn came to take possession and take the punishment that comes with it, you’d do your part, right?
Not if you’re Marley Williams, apparently.
At a point in the game where St Kilda were just staggering back to their feet after North’s first quarter barrage, Williams had a ball come into his area (again, sounds erotic, but it’s not) via a handball from Sam Wright. He had to jump to take possession. He jumped all right – jumped like a cat that just got a fright! Instead of grabbing the ball and taking the tackle that inevitably would’ve followed from big, scary third gamer, Ben Paton, Marley tapped the ball away in the direction of… someone (he hoped) and was out of the play.
Jack Billings read the tap from Williams, fed the handball to Jack Sinclair and he snapped a goal around the body from 35 metres out.
Go back and have a look if you like – it happened with 3.20 remaining in the second quarter, and it’s the second time in recent weeks that Williams has cost North a goal due to failing when something physical presented.
In short, it’s not good enough. Once is an anomaly. Twice is the beginning of a pattern of behaviour.