Putting the bigfooty tiger landscape into context

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Rodney Dangerfield

Doesn’t matter
Mar 28, 2005
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This weird year has fascinated me in many ways and you can add being a poster here for the first time in 15 years.
The reactions to the footy or a strange version of it at least have me intrigued. Whilst familiar with a lot of posters I’d love the age and history to put some posting into context, it’s not to judge, criticize or anything sinister it’s just to hopefully gain a better understanding. Three years ago I don’t think it intrigued me but now a Richmond fan can be categorized as having completely different experiences or journeys and may help understand different emotions.
Myself at 48 and having been attending tigers games regularly since 1976 I find myself in a state compared to having twice scratched an itch I wondered if I’d ever reach. Relieved to the point of completely satisfied and relaxed, perhaps too relaxed as I still feel disappointed in my own reaction to last year so euphoric was I after 2017, I felt sort of robbed at how blasé I felt last season. When we lose games like we have the last two games I feel totally unaffected compared to how I once did.
Bit I do notice the different reactions on here some of malaise, some of pure anger, some in my eyes irrational.
So would love to read the history, the ages, the experiences of the bigfooty tiger fan to help give all of us a better understanding of how each feels and why.
 
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peterbuch74

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46yo Tiger here, first tiger game I recall going to was in 1979. Dad signed me up in the cheer squad late 80s so he knew that if I ever went by myself I'd be sitting with other tigers regardless of where the game was.

I rattled tins for SOS campaign
I made banners in Burnley for years
I got to the G at 9.30am on a Saturday to help put up the clubs sponsor advertisements around the grounds with the cheer squad
I watched many a crap game
I've seen may crap seasons too
Sat through many coaches and false dawns
I rode the little glimpses of success
I loved "most" players who pulled on a Tiger guernsey
I probably (most likely) swore at many of those same players at different times too
I bought my kids up to be Tigers hoping that one day we'd come good

We celebrated the sh!t out of 2017
We rode the top of the wave of what was most of 2018
We enjoyed the fight of 2019

This year is different... like you RD, having been through the highs and lows of 2013-14-15, the utter disappointment of 2016, then what came in the past three years, I can say that even though the past couple of games have been disappointing I'm not as fussed as I would've been previously.

To put that in context, the games have frustrated the crap outta me... but after the game there's not that underlying feeling of "well here we go again", or "wonder which work mate is gonna get into me about the bloody Tiges again"... We've had success, and I'm content to brush it off as "we've been ordinary haven't we".

Hope that the boys can recapture whatever it is that's missing and still make something of this strange year.
 

Wazza69

Draftee
May 6, 2020
11
20
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51 year old West Australian.South Fremantle supporter since Dad bribed my younger brother and I with a long sleeve guernsey with the big red V on it about age 5. Richmond supporter since Maurice Rioli joined the mighty Tiges in 1982. I live in a small coastal Town called Dongara..population about 3000-3500.i know 3 Tigers supporters in town including myself.ive been laughed at for decades..same as OP I wondered if I’d ever see a premiership in my lifetime,especially with recent new teams and diluted draft but Thankyou free agency.i can breathe now with 2 under my belt.i no longer have my own personal cloud following me around.R.I.P. Maurice Rioli.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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Lsta062

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27 year old Tiger here. I’m the only Richmond fan in my family because one brother goes for Essendon and the other goes for Collingwood. Only the Essendon fan follows footy as strong as I do.

First Richmond game I attended was probably Richmond vs Carlton in either the late 2000s or the early 2010s. Not really big on attending games because my current inner circle of friends are not avid AFL fans (only one is - a Carlton supporter). They are probably more EPL or NBA fans.

I‘d say I first followed Richmond in 2002 (yep, the year where the finals drought started again). So for the first 10 years of following Richmond, we were a laughing stock. Friends of mine at the time (mostly Collingwood fans) would give us Richmond supporters crap about the team we follow all the time. Then came 2013-2015 (I joined bigfooty in 2014, but went on it in 2013). Those years were kinda nice, but ended in a frustrating way. Then came 2016 and I seriously had it because all I saw was disappointment. I legitimately wondered whether following Richmond was just a big waste of time.

When 2017-2019 came around, I was ecstatic about our dominance. It was really nice to see us winning Premierships. One thing that I am disappointed about is our lack of thrashings. Growing up I saw Richmond cop 100+ thrashings and scores against of 160+ on the regular, so to only see us do three 100+ margins (121, 113 and 104) and one 160+ score (163) in our period of dominance leaves me slightly dismayed. We made up for a lot of crap we received, but I thought we’d do more than that. Oh well, 2 premierships are still 2 premierships so I am still happy and satisfied!
 

Carnis

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Aug 9, 2018
77
221
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What I've seen over many years is the importance of management, recruitment and coaching. Excellence in culture, team psychology, and playing system are more important than high draft picks. Just look at Gold Cost compared with the Giants. Look at the Tiges (from the early 2010s) and Collingwood compared with Essendon and Carlton. And a team that is perennially successful must find diamonds in the rough and get more out of those players than their previous team. I worry about having lost good coaches such as Caracella, and that we're no longer getting more out of our players. Butler has shone since he left. Ellis too. While some of our newer guys have fallen off.
 

smasha

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Sep 7, 2003
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This weird year has fascinated me in many ways and you can add being a poster here for the first time in 15 years.
The reactions to the footy or a strange version of it at least have me intrigued. Whilst familiar with a lot of posters I’d love the age and history to put some posting into context, it’s not to judge, criticize or anything sinister it’s just go hopefully gain a better understanding. Three years ago I don’t think it intrigued me but now a Richmond fan can be categorized as having completely different experiences or journeys and may help understand different emotions.
Myself at 48 and having been attending tigers games regularly since 1976 I find myself in a state compared to having twice scratched an itch I wondered if I’d ever reach. Relieved to the point of completely satisfied and relaxed, perhaps too relaxed as I still feel disappointed in my own reaction to last year so euphoric was I after 2017, I felt sort of robbed at how blasé I felt last season. When we lose games like we have the last two games I feel totally unaffected compared to how I once did.
Bit I do notice the different reactions on here some of malaise, some of pure anger, some in my eyes irrational.
So would love to read the history, the ages, the experiences of the bigfooty tiger fan to help give all of us a better understanding of how each feels and why.
I think if we beat Collingwood last year,we’d be feeling like Neil Armstrong right now.

I remember 1980 and then the heartbreak of 82,winning and losing to old rivals really hits home.
 

joelsyt

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Mar 11, 2016
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I’ll be 41 in a few months and have supported Richmond since I was pretty much born, it’s the only team I remember ever supporting. Didn’t go to the footy much as a kid but still enjoyed going, even when we got thrashed.

I have been a little frustrated, which is annoying but pretty much have just shrugged the losses off this year as soon as the final siren has gone off.
 

Rifles

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Apr 11, 2017
214
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Thanks for creating this thread, RD. A really thought provoking thread for me And great to read all responses.

I'm 38 and have been drunk on tigers since birth. Very tough growing up as a tiger. Lots of pain and tears. I have so many vivid memories. Here's a few.

- photos at training with roach and the ghost as s little tacker
- mother's day massacre and the jubilation. High 5s everywhere on exit. Also dominated under 10s footy that Sunday and got the maccas voucher
- meeting Jack Dyer at a SOS fundraiser. Him telling me to never take off my tiger jumper
- fans screaming 'we want answers' at the change rooms after a capitulation again at the roy boys
- mark merenda telling me to f off after my words of encouragement near the bench when he was dragged
- the old member red seats and the 'johhny howat fanclub' banner held high on the crowd each week
- knights' first half and 95 semi
- Richo's knee and shattered dreams
- bloody nick duigan and that bloody final. I was sure the stadium would crack from our roar
- lambo and our first goal 17 prelim. Im sure the stadium did crack

My second was born in Sept 17 so it will never be bettered as the ultimate wave.

More current job, global circumstances and fatherhood has made me more grateful for our recent success. It always hurts to lose but not so much this year. Life is compromised. Not just footy. I'm More concerned about our loss of freedoms that comes from a crisis like this. Our isolation and increasing paranoia registers much higher than st Kilda taking the 4 points.

Everything changes. This is the catalyst for irreversible changes to lifestyle and choices. I find myself longing for more simple times. Filing out footy tips in the paper. Just waiting to get Duncan Kellaway's signature. I hope my girls get to experience some kind of innocence.
 

Cor tigris

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Oct 4, 2017
52
223
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Hi RD, I often wonder the same thing. Footy was not a major part of my family life growing up. Dad was a sort of a Carlton supporter (but hardly active) and Mum had a soft spot for St Kilda, but was essentially clueless regarding the game and the competition. I’m 49 and in primary school there were kids who tried to co-opt me to their team allegiances. Thankfully none really “stuck”. I had leanings earlier, but the 1980 GF was the trigger that got me onto the Tiger train. Perhaps not the most auspicious time to get on board, and of course I’ve had the opportunity to wonder if my support somehow brought Richmond’s previous success undone. I don’t think I actually attended a game until late in the mid-late eighties. I settled into life as a Richmond supporter through those “character-building” years of the 80s, 90s, and naughties. I even lived in Richmond briefly in the early 90s. A friend and I have been to almost every Melbourne-based Richmond-Geelong match since the mid-90s and I have never left a game early. Think of how this felt through those years. Remember round 6 2007?

With time/age my awareness grew that the players, coaches and administrators were just people, like the rest of us. They have skills, values, experience, passions, dreams, frustrations and flaws. This become even clearer as I reached the same age bracket as many of the administrators and an older bracket than many coaches (and all players). I loved and burned through 2013-2015, I thought I’d seen it all before in 2016, and I was in raptures in 2017. I was gutted in 2018, but had an unfamiliar quiet optimism once I got over the shock. My core realistic optimism remains. I still believe RFC is a resilient and successful organisation. We’ll be fine as long as short term disappointment is not allowed to drive internal wedges or cause long-lasting scars. I still ride the bumps, curse the skill errors, thrill at the run and surge, and love beating Collingwood, Geelong and North (and anyone else).
 

cutterman

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Great idea for a thread RD. As you can see by my post count I'm not the most active poster here, but constantly reading and lurking.

32yr old here, but my journey starts in 95. Long story short is that my old man is a Carlton supporter so I went along with him in the early years. But on Easter Sunday 1995 I saw the light! My uncles (all Tigers) took me to Waverley on a freezing wet day to see Richmond play Hawthorn. They spent the whole day teaching me the theme song, Richmond came from behind to win 4.16 to 5.4 (thanks to whoever posted that video of the match) and from then I was part of the army.

Never had disappointment like the 2013 Elimination Final, that was devastating. The years upon years of near misses, the Chris Newman celebration after beating Hawthorn, the pregame atmosphere around Swan St, the noise when we ran out, the lead, then f****ing Duigan. Garlett running into the open goal from the wing almost broke me. 2014 was a bonus to be there, 2015 was that non-holding the ball call, and 2016 was a here we go again, we missed out.

Every time I think of that month of September in 2017 I smile, that was just perfect. The crowd vs Geelong, the last quarter kick away, the crowd vs GWS, Butler's goal ("The Tiges are going to a Grand Final"). I was just rapt to be involved in the week, the parade, the open training, the lot! Then Vlas fumbles and Eddie waltzes into goal and I thought well, at least we got here. But oh, that second half, that beautiful second half! Looking for a pub to go to after the game, realising that Swan St had just been overrun and the most amazing night of celebrations (sharing it with my uncles and cousins).

That is what is getting me through this. I am not watching footy the same as I did prior to 2017, as that memory will always be there. Yes, we've been ordinary, yes, I am mighty frustrated during the game, no, I'm not going to sulk about it like I used to. It's not the same without being able to stand at the back of M5-6 and celebrate/commiserate with the best fan base in the world.
 

smurfin

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I'm mid-40s, live in Central Victoria.
Grew up in rural NSW and used to watch footy on TV and played (badly) throughout my High school years. As a kid I vaguely remember going to the footy at the MCG once and seeing Mark Jackson playing in a Geelong-Collingwood match. Probably decided on Richmond as my team around 1990 or so.
I still don't make it to many matches, maybe 2 or 3 a year if I'm lucky. My weekends generally revolve around my kids sports.
Probably around 2012 is when I started getting really fanatical about the Tigers and going to the pub to watch non free to air matches when I could. Before that I would watch whatever was on channel 7.
Became a member in 2017 but didn't attend any matches. Attended a couple of H&A games in 2018 and all the finals.
Attended all finals last year except the QLD final and went to the GF.
 

Dr Tigris

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I was a baby when we won in 1967, so I've been around for 7 premierships. I cannot remember not being a tigers fan. I grew up expecting dominance, or at least competitiveness. From the 80's I drifted into 1/2 hearted support. I was around, went to a few games, but that was it. Donated to SOS. Nothing serious. Started to come back more around 2000 for some reason. The character building years hurt, but also I reckon created a tiger culture that is the best in the league. From 2013 onwards I've been stoked as we've become the club that I always thought a super successful AFL club should be.

The 2017 and 19 premierships (I was at 2019 and it was great, but not the pure joy of 2017) have reinstated the glory of Richmond. This year sucks so far. I reckon there's a lot going on there. But I'm not really upset, just wanting it to get better. I have confidence in the club to get it right now. Which wasn't something you could have said 8 years ago.
 

Cotcho

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Cotcho, 33, and I’m a tigerholic.

Primary school the jokes were we always finished 9th.
Secondary school worse than Fitzroy.

Never went to the footy much but would go a few times a year. Even when we were mediocre and not entirely sh*t it took me about 5 years to attend an actual win.

Went to Waverley with my family as only Richmond supporter amongst St Kilda supporters. Ran off half way through the last quarter and police had to find me. Must have been around 8 years old.

Thought I was a jynx.
Thought Richmond were cursed. Thought I’d die before seeing Richmond win a premiership.

Went to the 2013 elimination final, probably the worst day of my life.

Even now after the recent success I’m riding every possession as if it was the 2017 grand final.

Still refuse to go to footy or watch football with opposition supporters. Nothing good comes of that.

Snuck weed into the 2017 finals campaign in vitamin containers to calm myself down. To my surprise actually worked and could somewhat enjoy the games rather than anguish and sit suffering the whole time until end result.
 

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SweetD

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Jan 27, 2017
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23 year old, which seems to make me a big baby here. To make you feel all very old, one of my earliest memories is Matthew Knights retirement game.

Now that you're all cringing at that, all my life Richmond was a big joke to support, you used to find the solace in small things, Cleve Hughes kicking a bag, Dean Polo's debut, the entire second half of the 2008 season. Lot's of false dawns.

So obviously, it's very nice to see us on top, it's good to finally sling some sh*t the other way, I'm not mad at our performances but I'm dissapointed because I know we can be doing far, far better at the moment and I don't want our peak to slip away without making a huge statement on the league.
 

Monjike

Team Captain
Mar 31, 2013
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671/2 years young, remember going to Punt Road oval after selling footy records at Richmond Station where dad had a news stand. Saw Ronnie Branton play a great captain's game to lead us to victory against Melbourne when we were wooden spooners and they were premiers. Loved watching crafty stagers like Roger Dean win free kicks against befuddled opponents. I remember when the Tigers started becoming a power from the mid sixties now have experienced winning seven premierships. Worked with Tommy Allen, an ex-tiger who still holds the record for kicking the most behinds on debut without kicking a goal...11! Paddy Guinane's shirtfront of Frank Dimattina (a team mate) Michael Gale's 60 metre kick towards goal (Geelong's) in a final, it's amazing the things that stay in your mind...
 
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Monjike

Team Captain
Mar 31, 2013
317
560
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From another perspective I am glad that the Richmond Football Club has shown leadership in demonstrating an inclusive culture. I remember going to a game against Carlton at Princes Park where a supporter abused Maurice Rioli by telling him to get back to his own country. Now this insult was usually directed towards people like me {of Greek background) who are migrants but it sounded absurd when directed at Maurice Rioli for self evident reasons. When somebody turned around and told this bloke that this was his country he kind of went quiet. We as a society have come (I hope) a long way since then...
 

sante

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32. For me, this era and these flags will be what I always remember about Richmond. I can’t see any premierships meaning as much as these 2 have.

Up until 2017, my whole life we’d been a laughing stock, so the 2017 flag was finally being able to let out all the frustration of supporting a club I’d never thought would win one. No flag will ever beat it.
 

RunningBounce

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Another 40-something man. Grew up in country NSW, so only started regularly going to Richmond games as a young adult. Would ordinarily go to at least half a dozen games a season, and miss it like crazy.

I'm a lifelong Tiger. No game or season ever means as much as the 40-odd years of football past, or the football yet to come. The baseline for my reaction to any game is the recent past, and I'm always more interested in how we respond than how we played. I'll cop three poor games in a row off the back of a 13 game winning streak, especially when all the pieces are in place to turn it around. It's when we've been poor for a while and there's no tangible signs that it might improve that I get irrational.

There's always an element in my response to a game that involves the style of our play. The way our current Tigers play is an absolute pleasure for me. Fast ball movement. Tough and physical pressure. Sure, I'd still enjoy the wins if we chipped it sideways and backwards before a contested mark and shot from 50, but that style does very little for me. (I really don't understand why congestion is a problem that needs to be solved. When footy is aerial ping-pong and circle work it's just no fun, IMO. Better spectacle for me when it's physical and the footy is hard to win cleanly.)

What currently worries me more than the losses is the slow, sideways chipping of the football. The fact that the handball 10 metres forward of the stoppage is being picked off by an opposition sweeper. The way we bomb it to the top of the goal square against 14 defenders. The missed tackles. Very un-Richmond.

But more important than any of that, is how we respond. And not just next week, but for the rest of the season.
 

Dr Tigris

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Another 40-something man. Grew up in country NSW, so only started regularly going to Richmond games as a young adult. Would ordinarily go to at least half a dozen games a season, and miss it like crazy.

I'm a lifelong Tiger. No game or season ever means as much as the 40-odd years of football past, or the football yet to come. The baseline for my reaction to any game is the recent past, and I'm always more interested in how we respond than how we played. I'll cop three poor games in a row off the back of a 13 game winning streak, especially when all the pieces are in place to turn it around. It's when we've been poor for a while and there's no tangible signs that it might improve that I get irrational.

There's always an element in my response to a game that involves the style of our play. The way our current Tigers play is an absolute pleasure for me. Fast ball movement. Tough and physical pressure. Sure, I'd still enjoy the wins if we chipped it sideways and backwards before a contested mark and shot from 50, but that style does very little for me. (I really don't understand why congestion is a problem that needs to be solved. When footy is aerial ping-pong and circle work it's just no fun, IMO. Better spectacle for me when it's physical and the footy is hard to win cleanly.)

What currently worries me more than the losses is the slow, sideways chipping of the football. The fact that the handball 10 metres forward of the stoppage is being picked off by an opposition sweeper. The way we bomb it to the top of the goal square against 14 defenders. The missed tackles. Very un-Richmond.

But more important than any of that, is how we respond. And not just next week, but for the rest of the season.
Completely agree. Especially about the game style. I love the contested game, when it is matched with skill and fast ball movement. Teh slow chippy, congestion game is awful. About as bad as AFLX - unwatchable.
 

Rodney Dangerfield

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Really loving reading these and can relate to so many of the games and moments being written about.
Safe to say if 17 and 19 hadn’t have happened this year would have just about broken us.
Can you imagine for example if we’d lost both and this season was seen as the year to break the drought?
fu** that.
 
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Coach_Required

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Born in NSW moved to Melbourne at 6 years of age, mum is Victorian and dad is South Australian. The old man took me to my first ever match a Richmond v Carlton game at the G 1982 (old man is and was a Richmond supporter) which we lost but I was stuck on the tigers ever since and also hated Carlton ever since. Family moved back to Sydney in 1985 and had to put up with our team turning into a compete basket case, but I still held firm.

Family move to Perth in 1989 and still my love for our club has never died, trust me the early 90's sucked, especially with the Eagles doing so well, never saw Richmond beat West Coast in Perth until 2001, what a night Richo kicked 6 under lights and it was worth the wait.

I guess that's the thing about us supporters, it has always been for as long as I remember "worth the wait". That one special win that keeps us turning up every week from Jeff Hogg's 10 against Collingwood on a mothers day massacre, to running over the bombers in the second half of the 1995 final, kicking 15 goals against the blues to their 1 goal at half time in a match in the early 2000's. Joel Bowden playing defensive tactics to the disgust of oppo fans who just wanted to se us lose once again.

It's the tiger story, "worth the wait" and no better than 2017 … worth the wait, I cried more in the prelim win over GWS than I did on GF, but watching the likes of Benny & Richo with tears of joy, I think every single one of us who has been through this journey together could relate. Something most of us over 40's were starting to wonder if it as ever going to happen, years of jokes and years of copping sh*t all made up for with 3 fantastic seasons where oppo fans went from "awesome we ill smash the tigers this week, easy win" to "bloody Richmond at the G again, its not fair".

I guess thats why this year I have started to become critical again, should I be? No absolutely not, this team gave us all something we will forever be eternally thankful for, in my eyes will go down as legends for our club. However I waited 37 years to see this club play with the history I only heard bout of our 60's and 70's sides and I get upset when we still lose today because I never want to see us go back to those dark days.

Thinking about this season, I wanted us to stay on top more for my own selfish reasons but I also know you cant stay on top forever, however you can ensure you can maintain being a powerful cub, so if that means I have to give this season up to reset and reload for future greatness, then so be it.
 

Bojangles17

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May 17, 2004
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Another 40-something man. Grew up in country NSW, so only started regularly going to Richmond games as a young adult. Would ordinarily go to at least half a dozen games a season, and miss it like crazy.

I'm a lifelong Tiger. No game or season ever means as much as the 40-odd years of football past, or the football yet to come. The baseline for my reaction to any game is the recent past, and I'm always more interested in how we respond than how we played. I'll cop three poor games in a row off the back of a 13 game winning streak, especially when all the pieces are in place to turn it around. It's when we've been poor for a while and there's no tangible signs that it might improve that I get irrational.

There's always an element in my response to a game that involves the style of our play. The way our current Tigers play is an absolute pleasure for me. Fast ball movement. Tough and physical pressure. Sure, I'd still enjoy the wins if we chipped it sideways and backwards before a contested mark and shot from 50, but that style does very little for me. (I really don't understand why congestion is a problem that needs to be solved. When footy is aerial ping-pong and circle work it's just no fun, IMO. Better spectacle for me when it's physical and the footy is hard to win cleanly.)

What currently worries me more than the losses is the slow, sideways chipping of the football. The fact that the handball 10 metres forward of the stoppage is being picked off by an opposition sweeper. The way we bomb it to the top of the goal square against 14 defenders. The missed tackles. Very un-Richmond.

But more important than any of that, is how we respond. And not just next week, but for the rest of the season.
Yep I completely echoe those game style sentiments , I love for an absorbing contest and am board shitless at a game of ping pong that just goes goal for goal
 

Who_Noes

Draftee
Jun 30, 2020
1
9
AFL Club
Richmond
Congratulations: this thread finally prompted me to register on BigFooty after lurking for a month.

I'm 67 and was lucky enough to see the Tiges go down to Carlton in 1972 and flog them in 1973 and to completely demolish Collingwood in 1980. I love Neil Balme. Francis Bourke was in grade 6 at Nathalia primary school when I was in grade one, which made selecting a team to follow pretty easy after he started with Richmond.

I've been intrigued as to what made a dynastic team like Melbourne in the 50s or Collingwood in the 20s. I've read some very insightful posts on this forum in amongst the dross. If we can just bring on the kids and mid tier players to replace our >200 gamers who will retire in the next two to three years, I think we are a good chance of creating a dynasty. Our current form lapse reminds me so much of the great teams of the late 60s. They would win a premiership then miss the finals the next year, then kick on again the year after. Despite the doom and gloom, its a great time to be a tiges supporter.

Go Tiges!!!!
 

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