|Venue: Princes Park||Date: Tuesday June 22, 1897|
|Result: Loss by 6 points||Umpire: Keenan||Crowd:|
|Goalkickers: W.O'Cock 3, S.Chapman 1, C.Sweatman 1.|
|Reports: Nil||Injuries: Nil|
Game ReviewOn Tuesday June 22, 1897 Carlton played their first match at Princes Park, and were defeated by Collingwood by 6 points. Coincidentally, Carlton had previously taken on Collingwood in the first VFL match at Victoria Park. Melbourne newspaper 'The Argus' reported the opening of Carlton's new home ground as follows:
"The ground, which is the same size as the famous MCC enclosure, is well fenced, both outside and the playing space, but as of yet there are no buildings. As it is, however, a joint occupancy by the local football and cricket club, improvements will come in good time. Half the ground is covered with a matted sward of couch grass, but the other half, which had to be levelled, has only been recently sown.
As the teams lined up preparatory to the start, Mr A. H. Shaw, President of the Carlton Club, called for three cheers for the Queen, and he then asked Alderman Moloney to have the first kick on the new ground, which was, of course, an old-fashioned Irish punt. Again, at half-time, the president invited the visitors to refreshments, and the health of Her Majesty having been honoured, the ground was again opened, Alderman Moloney drawing attention to the fact that they had two of the lions of old Carlton present, in Messrs. John Donovan and John Gardiner, the first-named gentleman appropriately holding the position of chairman of the trust. Both of these heroes of old were cheered to the echo. Mr Geo. Robertson, the famous Carlton follower, was there too, somewhat broader in beam than when, with a pebble in his mouth instead of the fashionable chewing gum, he charged through the Melbourne ruck.
There was everything in the surroundings to fire the light-looking juniors who made up Carlton's twenty today to play an exceptional game - and play they did, in a style that Carlton has not rivalled for years past. By 4 points only they failed to gain a victory against the powerful Collingwood, but hardly a man on the ground would deny that they deserved a victory."
Collingwood's Dan Lanigan was the first player to score a goal in a match at Princes Park in the League (and would later play 14 game for Carlton in 1899) and the first Carlton player to score a goal was Wally O'Cock shorlty after Lanigan's goal.
During the game, the biggest difference between the two teams was that the Collingwood team was more accurate, played with more coolness and had better high-marking. Carlton had held a narrow lead all day, two points up at half-time and five points at the last break. Our luck deserted us during the last quarter, when Carlton missed some easy shots to kick only 3 points for the term. Collingwood took their opportunities, however, and kicked two goals straight to steal the match and deny Carlton a fairlytale finish. Carlton had a late chance to steal the match, around 10 seconds before the final bell, but again missed to hand the game to Collingwood.
Carlton was on the worse end of the umpiring in the first half, but the free kicks evened up in the second half. Monahan and Condon were the two players that made the difference for Collingwood, playing splendidly with Patterson also working hard for the Collingwood team. For the Carlton side, Casey and Aitken worked hard all game and Williams, who had been cheered often for his fine runs with the ball, made up the best three players. Others playing well for the Blues included O'Cock who got three goals through clever forward play, Roberts with his experience and Oscar Manchester, a junior making his league debut, was also useful with his dash. Finally, Dunn, Walton, Chapman, Breeze, Woodhouse and Lyons all got honourable mentions for their game in the Carlton jumper.
On the Collingwood side were two players who would later play for Carlton; their centre half-forward Dan Lanigan (with Carlton in 1899) and their full-forward Rhoda McDonald, who crossed to the Blues in 1901.
Carlton's new ground at Princes Park opened on Diamond Jubilee holiday. Monohan and Condon steer Collingwood to victory by 6 points. - 100 Years of Australian Rules Football.
At the end of this round Carlton were in 7th spot on the ladder with a percentage of 55.1.
Mistakes Will Find You Out"Punctiliousness is necessary when mentioning dates, no matter how far one goes back.A few weeks ago Tommy Warne, former interstate cricketer, and curator of Princes Oval, told me that Carlton did not play on the present ground until the second year of the League - 1898. It was news to me, as I never read of the Blues playing on any other ground.
Tommy was a little out on his reckoning, as Carlton started on Princes Oval before the 1898 season.Tommy's inaccuracy was noted by Jim Aitken captain of Carlton in their first year as a League team. Jim says that Carlton played their first gam on the oval, against Collingwood, on Tuesday June 23 1897 (a public holiday). He remembers Alderman Jim Maloney kicking off with what was then described as a "good old Irish punt." Jack Gardiner, Jack Donovan, and George Robertson were also there and the takings were 36 pounds. Jim said that the day will linger in his mind, for he always recalls how Brook Hannah - now a missionary in China - defeated Charlie Pannam pointless. Hannah had treated McCallum, of Geelong in a similar fashion twoo previously.
Anyhow, here's to Jim Aitken and Tommy Warne. We won't scold Tommy for being a few weeks out, and look forward to further reminiscenes from both old-timers."
(Trove; Sporting Globe July 17 1935 p8)
|B:||Henry Dunne||Jim Lyons||Bill Weir|
|HB:||Brook Hannah||Ernie Walton (vc)||Peter Williams|
|C:||Chic Breese||Oscar Manchester||Bill Casey|
|HF:||Jack Roberts||Charlie Sweatman||Bobby Walsh|
|F:||Jim Caffery||Wally O'Cock||Sam Chapman|
|Rucks:||Bill Woodhouse||Harry H Morgan||Bob Cameron|
|Rover:||Jimmy Aitken (c)|
|Coach:||No coach and the captain directed the side|
|Note:||4 Rucks, 20 players on the ground and no interchange|
ChangesIn: C.Sweatman, C.Breese, J.Caffery, O.Manchester
Out: T.Blake, J.Reekie, H.Crane, J.Frost
MilestonesHistorical Fact: This was our first match at Princes Park.
Interesting Fact: Arthur Cummins turned out for his last Carlton game on this fine afternoon. He holds a noteable record of playing his whole career (of seven games) against all seven other VFL clubs - at seven different venues in seven consecutive rounds!
Interesting Fact: In 2012, the AFL looked into the scores in this match, and discovered that during the 2nd quarter a point registered by Collingwood was wrongly added to Carlton's score - making the correct result a 6 point win to the Magpies.
Debut: Oscar Manchester (Brunswick/Rainbow/University)
Records: This is the first match played between these 2 clubs.
Historical Footnote: Although this was the first VFL meeting of these two clubs, Carlton first played Collingwood in 1892. The Magpies were the youngest of the 8 VFL clubs, and the round 1 1892 Carlton game was also their first VFA match. Up until the end of 1896 these clubs had played each other 11 times, with the Blues winning 3, and losing 8. (See Pre VFL)
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