Captain courageous proves to be grand and indestructible force
DOES anybody have Arnold Schwarzenegger’s number?
If Greater Western Sydney repeats yesterday’s monstrous upset in next Saturday’s grand final and a movie is commissioned, the Hollywood star is the only man fit to play Phil Davis.
The inspirational captain played the role of “Terminator” at the MCG and his GWS teammates fed off that as if they were breaking a hunger strike at a buffet.
Davis, 29, dislocated his finger at the start of the match and coolly asked Adam Tomlinson to pop it back in.
The full-back then hobbled into the rooms in the first quarter with a calf strain, but casually slotted a heel raise into his boots and started the second quarter at full-forward.
Davis then appeared to pop a shoulder, but soldiered on with a layer of strapping. In previous preliminary final losses the Giants have lost Callan Ward (2016) and Dylan Shiel (2017) early to concussion.
Davis refused to join that list yesterday and, while he might not be fit for the biggest game of his life, he ensured his mates would get there.
“Sore lower leg. Can’t quite sprint, but can jog around,” Davis said at half-time.
But he spotted Jeremy Cameron at the start of the last quarter and shortly after Cameron’s powerful strike GWS led by 33 points. The Giants didn’t score again. It turned out they didn’t need to. Collingwood had 73 per cent of territory for the last term but were wasteful.
The Magpies had 11 more inside-50s but kicked 4.5 (29) and one of those goals shouldn’t have even counted.
Josh Thomas’s kick appeared to be touched by two sets of hands, but the umpire bounced the ball in the middle before the glamorous new AFL Review Centre had sent the message. MUMMY ON EDGE Shane Mumford’s career is out of oxygen and he has also done his best to leave the umpires short of breath this year. Mumford gave away six free-kicks yesterday, taking his season tally to an AFL-record 78. That’s 22 more kicks than Mummy has had in 2019.
At 33, Mumford has now been smashed in two consecutive finals. Is the banged-up beast a cert to play Richmond? MISSING MAGPIES A clutch of Magpies will feel like putting their fists through brick walls when they look back on their preliminary final stats.
The angriest will be Brody Mihocek, whose only two disposals came in the last quarter. This will sting.
The Giants’ Tim Taranto celebrates goal during the AFL Preliminary Final win against Collingwood at the MCG yesterday and (insets) the tension and joy for Toby Greene, Stephen Coniglio and Giants CEO Dave Matthews in the final minute of the match. Pictures: Phil Hillyard