Autopsy Round 2, 2021: St.Kilda v Melbourne *SPUD'S GAME* *SINCLAIR 100TH*

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Diehard Saint

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I want a flag.

For years I've been watching our field kicking slaughter us. It was back in spades this game. I'm really hoping it was a one off but i'm concerned. I don't know that a kick in the arse early in the season when we play that badly is necessarily a bad thing... in the greater scheme of things anyway. I know people won't agree.. that's cool.
One would hope that even “just” a 3 goal loss would provide the kick in the backside needed, if it is needed, and if not that hopefully their pride has been dented enough that we can bounce back and really give it to another severely undermanned club.

I thought our kicking and skills appeared to have improved immeasurably last season so I’m still hoping (based on the way GWS also played this week) that a lot of it was due to the heavy conditions in our game against them.

Just confirmed on 3aw that Shiel, Caldwell and Draper are out for a good many weeks between them. Stating the obvious, but this is a must win game. Not too concerned about the percentage, just the 4 points.
 

luca77

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Childish

They kicked 12-19. They missed a lot of really gettable shots. The score flattered us... a lot.

I'm not saying our season is shot. I'm not saying it's all doom and gloom. I'm simply commenting on how we played on Saturday night.

Don't worry about what kind of supporter i am mate. I'm clearly one with a difference of opinion to you... which you seem to struggle with.
It's a pretty silly opinion though.
 

Plugger35

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One would hope that even “just” a 3 goal loss would provide the kick in the backside needed, if it is needed, and if not that hopefully their pride has been dented enough that we can bounce back and really give it to another severely undermanned club.

I thought our kicking and skills appeared to have improved immeasurably last season so I’m still hoping (based on the way GWS also played this week) that a lot of it was due to the heavy conditions in our game against them.

Just confirmed on 3aw that Shiel, Caldwell and Draper are out for a good many weeks between them. Stating the obvious, but this is a must win game. Not too concerned about the percentage, just the 4 points.
Our kicking and general skill level was as bad as I've seen us under Ratten, hopefully it was just an aberration due to a few factors like players being tired from a hard slog the previous week, the emotion of it being Spud's tribute game and maybe some nerves playing back in front of a home crowd.

I guess we'll find out over the next few weeks whether that poor kicking/skill level was a one off or a more concerning trend like we saw under Richo.
 

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pebblesofsand

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Melbourne had some important players out also, can't use injuries as an excuse for this one.
I didn't use injuries as an excuse. I said we played poorly and even with the team we had in, if we had played anywhere near our best we would have beaten Melbourne.

Our disposal and decision making was disgraceful and unlike some others I put that down to it being early in the season rather than us being a crap team.
 

True Blue Saint

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Another classic insipid performance on a big, important night for the club. That's how you know football is back. So many things that were just terrible tonight, it's hard to know where to start. Apologies for the long, ranting post.

- The whole Covid set up is a joke. The crowd was clearly no where near capacity yet we are jammed in like sardines in certain areas - way less "covid-safe" than any typical home game set up yet we need to go through all these extra steps to go into a less "safe" environment.

- Someone needs to get on the phone and bring Ryder back. We need him. You can carry one below the level ruck but you cant carry two of them. And we saw that tonight. Hunter will cop more heat but McKernan was worse in my opinion.

- Desperately missed having someone take a mark up the ground when coming out of defence. 2 weeks in a row thats been a huge issue. Membrey tried is guts out and was fantastic in the first quarter but was just outsized in the end. McKernan is hopeless as already discussed. Felt like King hardly went up the ground and also spent a decent time on the bench each quarter leave us with no target up forward - the ball barely went down there so what the hell were they resting him from? The run to the bench would have taken more out of him than anything that was happening up forward.

- Stop playing Josh Battle on the wing. He is a key forward, play him in his actual position. Especially when we were struggling for a target up forward, or a player who can lead up the ground. Instead, we just didnt have someone doing that and instead used Battle out of position. And it's not like we don't have two very good and highly paid wings in the side who have the tanks to play the majority of the game there. It make no sense why we keep attempting this experiment when it keeps producing nothing.

- I've gotten in a lot of arguments defending Seb Ross over the years, but these last two weeks have shown why I keep doing it. I'd rather someone with limitations like Ross in the side every week but you know will work his ass off than half of the more talented players who were out there tonight.

- Dougal Howard take a bow. You were exceptional. I hope your teammates apologise to you for the constant pressure they out you under tonight. If only half of them have the determination and grit to keep on trying like you do. Instantly see why he is Vice Captain after only being at the club for a year.

- Steele showed why he is our captain. Lifted when we needed him. He's is everything the media says Patrick Cripps is but actually produces it on field. And one of the few 'premier mids' who actually threatens in the forward line - except unsurprisingly is never mentioned in the conversation.

- Anyone tries to call Billings weak again can just piss off. He might be an outside player, but he puts his body on the line and just doesnt flinch when contact comes. His mark in the 2nd quarter was incredible.

- The huge loss Ben Paton is really showed tonight. Pickett wouldn't have got a kick on Paton, yet no real lockdown small defender and the guy plays the best game of his career. Big ask for Gears to come straight back from a broken leg and be that lockdown defender we need. Webster and Long try but dont have the qualities that make Paton so good.

- Gresh was okay - better in the 2nd half again. Is there something we are doing positional or rotations wise to keep him fresh?

- When is Hill actually going to deliver on the promise? His game was actually disgraceful. I hope he donates his entire match payment to tonights cause because his performance was that bad.

- The 3 smalls were invisible. I thought Lonie presented the best despite him having the lowest stats - seemed to be more lively and out himself in better positions, especially in the first half. Buter and Higgins were both non-entities tonight. If we dont get a big game from Butler next week, he will seriously be entering one-season wonder territory.

- Worst game Hunter Clark and Coffield have played for a while. Not impressed with Jones either - 12 disposals just not good enough from someone starting in the middle all game. Bytel tried when he came on - and looked okay - but the damage was done.

I think thats everyone. Geez, good to get the first real melt of the season out of the way.
+1. Agree with most of your points.

I think we are starting to see the reasons why Sydney let go of Jones. After a purple patch, he really hit a form slump when he started getting some attention and he didn't look any better tonight (despite seemingly not getting any attention)
 

Mowman

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+1. Agree with most of your points.

I think we are starting to see the reasons why Sydney let go of Jones. After a purple patch, he really hit a form slump when he started getting some attention and he didn't look any better tonight (despite seemingly not getting any attention)
Jones 1 st game for the year and finished 6th in the B&F last year
 

BrutThough

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+1. Agree with most of your points.

I think we are starting to see the reasons why Sydney let go of Jones. After a purple patch, he really hit a form slump when he started getting some attention and he didn't look any better tonight (despite seemingly not getting any attention)
I'm willing to give Jones a pass for Saturday since it was his first game back from injury and he didnt play any of the preseason games. It will be interesting to see how he goes with Crouch in the side.
 

Tyrian Lonestar

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I want a flag.

For years I've been watching our field kicking slaughter us. It was back in spades this game. I'm really hoping it was a one off but i'm concerned. I don't know that a kick in the arse early in the season when we play that badly is necessarily a bad thing... in the greater scheme of things anyway. I know people won't agree.. that's cool.
Yeah I'll agree to disagree there.
Win or lose every % point is important at the business end of the season.
 

gringo2011

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Really, if my aunty had balls. it is all hypothetical and you could say that about anything. Fact is they did miss, fact is they only won by three goals. First you went a 100 points and now 73 points by a linear movement of points and behinds. It IS a stretch to imagine your scenario and all you are doing is catastrophizing.
We played poorly and still only lost by three goals, probably should have been 6, but you reckon they should have won by 15 goals?

Spare me the hysteria please.

Oh sorry mister emotionally balanced. I always like to receive feedback from level headed posters like you. Thanks for setting me straight.
 

Saintsydney

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I didn't use injuries as an excuse. I said we played poorly and even with the team we had in, if we had played anywhere near our best we would have beaten Melbourne.

Our disposal and decision making was disgraceful and unlike some others I put that down to it being early in the season rather than us being a crap team.
I said walking out of the GWS game that we got away with one and won’t ever be able to see hunter and mckernan in the same team again and win - they are both ‘break glass in case of emergency’ types and we can expect to compete well enough with one in the team

But with both of them running around in the same team we are seriously behind the eight ball from the first bounce - Hunter was totally gassed by halftime v GWS - not sure he touched it after halftime -
Our disposal v the D’s was diabolical and certainly contributed to the shocking performance and loss - but injuries were definitely a factor because the team in my opinion can’t afford to have both those big guys running around in the same game
 

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moirae42

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So I sat through the replay.

Lessons in self harm.

It wasnt the Dees' pressure so much. We just butchered it.

After sitting through that again, I genuinely think we were fatigued. At least to a point... mentally.

Not good. Urgency wasnt there when it needed to be and we rushed it when we didnt need to.

The review today would have been somewhat blunt you would think
 

Verdun66

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I saw something this morning about how GWS and St Kilda ran further than any other team last week. And of course it was wet and heavy (ish) I cannot remember where I saw it. Anyone else see that? Not a coincidence that both teams looked as flat as tacks.
 

austinnn

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I don't think there is any need to panic. It was a poor performance, but we haven't really done it twice in a row under Ratten and there is little reason to think we won't bounce back. Some observations:

1. We got on top, Melbourne adjusted, the players didn't trust the plan with their actions, and momentum was taken from us.
2. We didn't put enough time into Oliver.
3. Didn't get much from the small forwards, but the ball needs to get to ground for them to work, and slow ball movement makes it less likely the ball will get to ground.
4. Two losses against Melbourne in similar fashion since Richo went into their coaching box.
5. Speaking of Richo, at one stage on Saturday night Membrey, McKernan, Battle and King were all on the wing within 10 metres of each other waiting for the ball to be kicked in their direction after a mark across half back. THIS. CANNOT. KEEP. HAPPENING.
6. In retropsect, sometimes you need to lean into your weakness and roll the dice in turning it into a strength. Playing both Hunter and McKernan played into Melbourne's hands. With Battle looking lost on a wing, it would have been better to have him in the McKernan role and only play one ruckman, either Hunter or McKernan.
7. Higgins can be too unselfish for his own good sometimes.
8. We have a plethora of small forwards. We need to be ruthless about only playing the ones in form. Yes, this means you, guy who finished 2nd in the B&F last year.
9. Some other aspects of Richo-ball seeping in, like passing rather than taking on the responsibility of kicking the goal yourself. This is why someone like Gresham is so important - his goal in the 4th quarter was excellent, and he wanted the responsibility.
Not really interested in the scoreboard flattering us, being flat emotionally or the effects of a slog in the mud the previous week. What concerns/disappoints me is that we were nearly 3 goals up well into the second quarter and hardly fired a shot there after.

It wasn't like we were never in it. It was a totally winnable game that we got a grip on early and then let slip. Equally concerning was our atrocious ball use, not seen since the days of Cho.

Two very good posts.

I just watched the 2nd Q on replay trying to get some sense of how we turned up our toes and lost that game from a dominant position. That Brad Hill I50 mis-kick was the turning point. Not blaming him specifically but we can't hide from the fact that his poor kicking at crucial moments stopped us taking advantage of any moments of dominancy. I hope he will play himself back into our good books since it's clear he won't be dropped.

I thought Sinclair initially was worth dropping but really at least he was getting some action. Our kicking was just so bad, unfortunately the ones like Hill, Jones, Ross and Sinclair that were getting their hands on it were just handing straight back to the opposition.

So who do you drop? The passengers like Higgins and Butler who were nowhere near it, or the poor disposers who were letting the Demons control the game? Personally for me, it has to be the latter, with Crouch coming in and personally I'd start Bytel too, he seems to be calm and clean. I would trust that with better delivery the passengers will get better chances to impose themselves. Trouble is, how do you drop sloppy disposers when they put in the effort that someone like Ross put in? That tackle on Viney should be the kind of thing that is rewarded at the club.

Cal Wilkie has been having a mare so far, hope he sorts himself out. The backline still looks pretty suspect and disorganised. Such a shame Frawley is unavailable. Maybe it is time to try Battle down back again, he's such a good forward though that we'd be robbing Peter to pay Paul. I know no one here has the answer, but what on earth is keeping Carlisle out of the side? It's one of the biggest current footy mysteries, up there with "What TF is wrong with David Teague's hair?" (Something is definitely not right but I can't put my finger on it, he still looks like he's wearing a disguise.)

I also agree with Diehard, I haven't been seeing Roughy on the bench lately; is it just that he was there but no one is focusing on him or he isn't there? That was definitely working for us in 2020. Good to see Gears up in the coaches box, but no Roberton? Anyone know what he's up to? Wouldn't blame him for taking some time away with his family, just interested to know as I read plenty of times that he was interested in pursuing a coaching career.

So annoying to have to go through a whole week like this, unsure of where we are all of a sudden. Once again, blowing a massive opportunity on the big stage, it does get under my skin. We can't win them all though, so hopefully in a month we'll be feeling more confident again after a few more competent efforts. Really can't wait to have Rowan and Paddy back though, and to see what Bert Crouch does for us. Next match can't come quickly enough.

Go Saints!
 

BrutThough

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Two very good posts.

I just watched the 2nd Q on replay trying to get some sense of how we turned up our toes and lost that game from a dominant position. That Brad Hill I50 mis-kick was the turning point. Not blaming him specifically but we can't hide from the fact that his poor kicking at crucial moments stopped us taking advantage of any moments of dominancy. I hope he will play himself back into our good books since it's clear he won't be dropped.

I thought Sinclair initially was worth dropping but really at least he was getting some action. Our kicking was just so bad, unfortunately the ones like Hill, Jones, Ross and Sinclair that were getting their hands on it were just handing straight back to the opposition.

So who do you drop? The passengers like Higgins and Butler who were nowhere near it, or the poor disposers who were letting the Demons control the game? Personally for me, it has to be the latter, with Crouch coming in and personally I'd start Bytel too, he seems to be calm and clean. I would trust that with better delivery the passengers will get better chances to impose themselves. Trouble is, how do you drop sloppy disposers when they put in the effort that someone like Ross put in? That tackle on Viney should be the kind of thing that is rewarded at the club.

Cal Wilkie has been having a mare so far, hope he sorts himself out. The backline still looks pretty suspect and disorganised. Such a shame Frawley is unavailable. Maybe it is time to try Battle down back again, he's such a good forward though that we'd be robbing Peter to pay Paul. I know no one here has the answer, but what on earth is keeping Carlisle out of the side? It's one of the biggest current footy mysteries, up there with "What TF is wrong with David Teague's hair?" (Something is definitely not right but I can't put my finger on it, he still looks like he's wearing a disguise.)

I also agree with Diehard, I haven't been seeing Roughy on the bench lately; is it just that he was there but no one is focusing on him or he isn't there? That was definitely working for us in 2020. Good to see Gears up in the coaches box, but no Roberton? Anyone know what he's up to? Wouldn't blame him for taking some time away with his family, just interested to know as I read plenty of times that he was interested in pursuing a coaching career.

So annoying to have to go through a whole week like this, unsure of where we are all of a sudden. Once again, blowing a massive opportunity on the big stage, it does get under my skin. We can't win them all though, so hopefully in a month we'll be feeling more confident again after a few more competent efforts. Really can't wait to have Rowan and Paddy back though, and to see what Bert Crouch does for us. Next match can't come quickly enough.

Go Saints!
Roberton was coaching at the VFL practice match on Saturday.
 

El_Duderino

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don’t make me bring up Battle in the last quarter against Freo late in 2019 again. You know you won’t shut me up about it.
That’s why I want him down back!!!
 

Verdun66

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I wrote in my original comments in this autopsy thread that I wasn't looking for excuses for our performance, but I was looking for reasons. If ....and it is if....we were heavy legged that would explain a lot. If in coming weeks we see more of the same, then I think we can melt away.

But I am erring on the side of caution. Judging by GWS's performance, it is a strong possibility that an early season game with little match practice behind us contributed to the poor showing. The fact that we stayed in it is perhaps meritorious. We just had no spark. And that isn't us at Marvel. If you are fatigued and have little energy it is hard to replace it just with pride. I think the pride kept us in it.

I'm big on my cricket analogies. If a good batting line up gets caught on a wet deck, and is bowled out for a low score do you criticise them? You are not going to go out there and cream the ball around as you probably would in good conditions. It's just realism. We weren't at our best, and they couldn't lift to play at our normal level.

I am going to hold my horses and see how the next few weeks unfold. Essendon a good chance to find some touch. We have had two strange games. Now for a run of games at Marvel where we should run into fitness and form.
 

El_Duderino

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I wrote in my original comments in this autopsy thread that I wasn't looking for excuses for our performance, but I was looking for reasons. If ....and it is if....we were heavy legged that would explain a lot. If in coming weeks we see more of the same, then I think we can melt away.

But I am erring on the side of caution. Judging by GWS's performance, it is a strong possibility that an early season game with little match practice behind us contributed to the poor showing. The fact that we stayed in it is perhaps meritorious. We just had no spark. And that isn't us at Marvel. If you are fatigued and have little energy it is hard to replace it just with pride. I think the pride kept us in it.

I'm big on my cricket analogies. If a good batting line up gets caught on a wet deck, and is bowled out for a low score do you criticise them? You are not going to go out there and cream the ball around as you probably would in good conditions. It's just realism. We weren't at our best, and they couldn't lift to play at our normal level.

I am going to hold my horses and see how the next few weeks unfold. Essendon a good chance to find some touch. We have had two strange games. Now for a run of games at Marvel where we should run into fitness and form.
I’m sort of half and half in the camps of everything is fine/the sky is falling.

on the EIF camp it’s too early to really know anything so let it all play out but at the same time I don’t think we will just come out and belt Essendon. It will be tough.

also people say “well because of that we need to win one of the Richmond/west coast/port games to make up for it” I’m not sure that’s really true. In my pre season prediction I had us at 2-4 after six rounds. More important is how competitive we are in those games. I’m wrapt we get Richmond early too. That’s when you want to get them. Later in the season they’ll get rolling and be much more finely tuned. We are capable of winning all three of those matches imo. Let’s see how we go.
 

stfan

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I am going to hold my horses and see how the next few weeks unfold. Essendon a good chance to find some touch. We have had two strange games. Now for a run of games at Marvel where we should run into fitness and form.
After the Don's game there is a world of hurt coming unless we right royally get our act into gear.

Plus it seems that Crouch may be the only player of note back for some of those games.

1617013330093.png
 

stfan

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I’m sort of half and half in the camps of everything is fine/the sky is falling.
I don't know if it is falling, or not, but what seems to be evident for 2021 is:
  • We have the hardest fixture in 2021
  • Now compounded as more teams look to be more competitive in 2021
  • While we are not the only club to have a bad injury run, we are certainly one of them
The other clubs have now had a year to think about the way we play and how to negate it.

So overall we need to be better to just tread water.

An issue that concerns me still is that we still lack genuine matchwinners (ie players that can turn the flow of games) and star power.
 

Mowman

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I don't know if it is falling, or not, but what seems to be evident for 2021 is:
  • We have the hardest fixture in 2021
  • Now compounded as more teams look to be more competitive in 2021
  • While we are not the only club to have a bad injury run, we are certainly one of them
The other clubs have now had a year to think about the way we play and how to negate it.

So overall we need to be better to just tread water.

An issue that concerns me still is that we still lack genuine matchwinners (ie players that can turn the flow of games) and star power.
If you’re not improving from one year to the next you will go backwards, it’s the same for every club
We have had a year to improve how we play so clubs can’t work us out, we are in the same boat as every club
 

El_Duderino

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If you’re not improving from one year to the next you will go backwards, it’s the same for every club
We have had a year to improve how we play so clubs can’t work us out, we are in the same boat as every club
Exactly. Maybe we’re going to overtaken by the teams below us but two of the teams that finished above us aren’t looking too crash hot either in Geelong and Brisbane.
 

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