Yesterday Richmond merely outplayed Hawthorn in the first two quarters. In the 3rd quarter they wore them down to an exhausted and hollow shell of a football team, which they then ground into the dirt in the last quarter. Hawthorn, who had been premiership favourites at the opening siren, were made to look very average.
What's wonderful for Richmond fans is that this is not quite the miraculous bolt from the blue that it may appear. Their form leading into this match suggested to me that they would win, and I tipped them. Last week they came back from 40 points down against ladder leaders Essendon, just failing to hold on. Before that they were competitive in narrow losses to a series of top teams, and convincingly beat Sydney.
I believe this was the real Richmond, and everyone in the AFL really has to get their head around that. There have been so many false dawns with Richmond, that it's not surprising that skeptics have been in the majority. I really think they can beat St Kilda, Fremantle and GWS in the next three weeks, and go into the break on 7 wins / 4 losses.
I listened to the whole game on the radio while cleaning and cooking yesterday. I am not often on my feet for that long - by the end of the game my back was aching and I really felt like I had played the 4 quarters myself. I am completely delighted, and as far as I am concerned that is our best win since the 1995 finals.
RICHMOND 4.4 8.8 13.9 21.11 (137) HAWTHORN 1.3 4.9 8.10 10.15 (75)
GOALS Richmond: Riewoldt 6, King 3, Jackson 2, Martin 2, Edwards 2, Deledio, I Maric, Nahas, Morris, Tuck, Cotchin. Hawthorn: Breust 3, Rioli 2, Roughead 2, Young, Smith, Franklin.
BEST Richmond: Cotchin, I Maric, Foley, Deledio, Tuck, Riewoldt, Morris. Hawthorn: Burgoyne, Roughead, Lewis, Birchall, Whitecross.