Crocs’ gallant gesture
THE scoreboard pretty much told the story at the Croc-pit last Saturday. Brad Cooper’s team had sixty more scoring shots and the severely depleted Cairns Lions managed only two points for the game. The massive margin (over 35 goals) was always inevitable and crowd interest waned as the one-sided contest progressed.
Cooper took the opportunity to rest some key players and this heralded the inclusion of two teenagers, Tom Goodall and Brayden Wall. Both are mobile young talls and Goodall, in particular, may well hold his position in the Crocs’ best when the finals approach. Wall booted three impressive majors and his fast leading cut swathes through a struggling opposition defence.
The Crocs’ best player list could have hosted all 22 players,. Jesse Mawson kicked 10 goals, in the absence of leading forward Kye Chapple, and managed to confound the Lions whose backs were under constant siege. Adam Gross and Kurt Bradshaw helped themselves to 4 goals each as the ball flowed endlessly into the Crocs’ offensive fifty metre arc.
Early goals to running defenders Wes Glass and Troy Lehman set the tone for the day as the Crocs’ attacking moves grew more relentless. Matty Medcraft, Peter Bury and Todd Shapter, on the back of Kallum Oates’ ruck dominance, mauled the Lions’ onballers.
The one-way flow of the football made for the predicted lop-sided nature of the contest, but to the Lions’ credit the boys from Holloways Beach never stopped competing. It is tough times for them at the moment, but the football-tide always turns and the frustrations of season 2017 will erase for them with strategic recruiting in the coming years.
In a gesture of solidarity with the Lions the Crocs’ assistant coach, Wes Glass, broke with tradition at the aftermatch awards ceremony and presented the Crocs’ best player prizes to various Lions’ players. This was recognition by the Crocs’ club that, despite experiencing tough times on the field, the Lions remain a valued part of the AFL Cairns football community.
An act of camaraderie by the Crocs. A class act by Glass.
Peter Bury marks, with Matthew Medcraft looking on