|Venue: Princes Park||Date: Saturday August 22, 1936|
|Result: Win by 8 points||Umpire: McMurray||Crowd: 15,000|
|Goalkickers: A.Clarke 3, R.Cooper 2, W.Mutimer 2, K.Dunn 1, J.Hale 1, T.Pollock 1, H.Vallence 1, J.Wrout 1.|
|Best: F. Anderson, E. Huxtable, W. Mutimer, J. Park, B. Green, F. Williams|
|Reports:||Injuries: K. Shea (knock to head), replaced by C. Denning in final quarter, H. Bullen (leg), F. Gilby (thigh), A. Clarke (thigh), T. Pollock (ankle)|
Game ReviewFor the second week in a row, Carlton had to overcome a three quarter time deficit to gain victory; this time against an in-form Footscray. After an even first half, the Tricolours’ better tactics and forward line saw them lead by 29 points at the last change, but once Carlton’s forward line got going the Blues went on to win by eight points in a nail-biting finish.
Thursday night’s training was reasonably light, after Tuesday’s strong session. Coach Frank Maher was keeping the training drills up as the club was determined not to drop out of the four. Mick Crisp and Charlie Davey had ankle concerns and could not be considered, but Ron Cooper’s shoulder injury was responding to treatment well. Bob Green also looked likely after recovering from his bruised thigh. The announced side had Davey and Jack Carney out with injuries and Bert Butler omitted. Keith Dunn, Frank Williams and Cooper were the inclusions. Clen Denning was named 19th man.
Footscray opened with the breeze and nippy play registered two early behinds. Strong ruck work from Carlton created three thrusts forward but strong Footscray defence kept the Blues out, until Wrout and Shea scored a behind each. Shea created several opportunities and from one, a strong drive found Pollock, who was fouled on the boundary line. From the free kick, his lovely punt went through for full points. Mutimer was troubling the Footscray defence, but over use of handball and silly short passing on the soggy ground cost Carlton several chances. A shot at goal from Mutimer looked good until Cooper erroneously touched the ball on the goal line for a behind. The game lacked sparkle; both sides had issues with players co-operating and Carlton looked well below their usual standard. Park and Anderson were highlights in defence and kept the Tricolours out until a nice mark brought their first goal. This was followed by a great snap for their second goal, after some good work in the middle of the ground. Carlton replied after Shea again drove from the centre and found Cooper, loose in the forward line. His drop kick resulted in the Blues’ second goal. A long punt gave Footscray their third goal for the term and a lead of nine points at the first change.
Clarke and Wrout combined at the start to send Carlton into attack but Wrout miskicked badly and scored only a behind. Vallence had a chance but also missed for a behind. Another thrust went to Dunn, who smartly played on and ran into an open goal for Carlton’s third to level the scores. A behind to Wrout put the Blues in front and from the kick out, Mutimer marked well. His raking punt sailed through for a goal. Both sides had lifted, with Carlton slightly the better, but the tactic of handball and short passing was not paying off for the Blues. On the downside, the soggy conditions had made the game crowded. From a free in the centre, Footscray attacked and sent the ball deep into the goal square for a mark and goal. Footscray’s defence was strong and had done well against the breeze, keeping the scores within two points at half time. For the half, Anderson, Mutimer, Park, Cooper, Huxtable and Shea had been the better players.
Carlton were first to attack through Hale, but smart defence from Footscray intercepted a pass meant for Vallence and drove through the centre. A good mark in the goal square gave Footscray their fifth goal. The wind had dropped and the slippery conditions had made the ball heavy, but Footscray was surer when handling the ball and they were now playing very good football, tenacious in their attack on the ball. A Carlton attack was turned easily and Footscray gained a behind, but they were now attacking relentlessly, putting Carlton’s defence under enormous pressure. An attack from the centre resulted in their sixth goal, followed by another from a great kick from the boundary. Carlton looked rattled, but settled slightly after Gilby, Green, and Bullen combined well and sent the ball to Clarke for a behind. Great play from Pollock, with a long 40 yard run around the boundary, found Hale who goaled from an acute angle. Footscray responded magnificently, with three late goals to take a 29 point lead into the final quarter. Their play for the term had been superb, and Carlton had a big task in front of them.
For the first three quarters, the game had been a battle of the defences, with Footscray having the only functioning forward line. Carlton’s tactics of short passing and handballing hadn’t worked and so, with their season potentially in the balance, the Blues made a series of changes at the start of the last quarter. Anderson came into the centre, Wrout was moved to full forward, Shea went to the half forward line and Hale started in the back line. Footscray had placed an extra man into defence and his Carlton opponent went with him, making the forward line crowded. Attacking from the bounce, Clarke sent Carlton forward but an error by Wrout allowed Footscray to clear. The ball went straight back to Clarke who opened the Blues’ account with a running goal. From a snap, Dunn was unlucky to hit the post. Carlton were now playing a long kicking game, with results. Cooper weaved around several defenders and capped off some great play with a goal, before Shea began a move around the flank and passed to Bullen. His handball went to Clarke on the run and the eighth Carlton goal was registered. Footscray was fighting every inch of the way but Carlton was surging now, dominating the game. Shea kicked into attack again and found Wrout, who received a free but his poor kick brought up a minor score. He atoned soon after with a long kick from well out to level the scores at the fifteen minute mark. Attacking again, Bullen made good position but his short pass was intercepted by Footscray who swept forward and, from a free, retook the lead with a goal. The Blues kept attacking and after three behinds were scored, Mutimer goaled to wrest back the lead as time on began. Vallences’ first goal of the game came next, making the Tricolours’ task difficult. Shea was replaced by Denning after receiving a knock to the head. Clarke, with his third goal for the term, kicked the sealer putting Carlton up by 15 points. In a desperate late effort, a fine mark to Footscray cut the margin to nine points before a high snap at goal was touched as it went through, leaving the Blues eight points up at the final siren. The Blues had been errant at goal; fifteen scoring shots for seven goals eight, but it was enough.
With the win, Carlton had made their chances more secure. Carlton were in 3rd spot on the ladder with a percentage of 128.5. The Blues and Melbourne (also winners) were now a game ahead of Richmond, who had lost their third game in a row. Geelong’s chances now looked remote, despite their third win in a row. Next week would probably determine the makeup of the final four. Carlton was up against Collingwood in a huge game, Melbourne faced Footscray and Richmond had the resurgent Geelong.
Footnote: Carlton’s 22 behinds looks bad, but pales when compared to South Melbourne, who kicked 30 in their win over Essendon.
|B:||6 Fred Gilby||26 Jim Park||2 Don McIntyre|
|HB:||9 Eric Huxtable||10 Jim Francis (c)||11 Jack Hale|
|C:||18 Frank P Williams||8 Keith Shea||32 Bob Green|
|HF:||1 Frank Anderson||28 Jack Wrout||19 Ron Cooper|
|F:||5 Keith Dunn||22 Harry Vallence||16 Ted Pollock|
|Ruck:||15 Horrie Bullen||3 Wally Mutimer||31 Ansell Clarke|
|19th Man:||34 Clen Denning|
Round 15 | Round 17