Brought to you by the ever-rockin @graeme
ORFFA Round eight –
Rucking hell; farewell to andy, welcome to TTH
Andy is the only ORFFAN I have met; a fun guy for sure. Sometimes we have to be strong and say “right now the real world is more important than the fantasy world.” I hope we all would have the strength to do that. Mate, I am sure you know you are always welcome to drop into ORFFA or Auckland. Stay good andy, hope to see your smiling face soon.
TTH, what a guy – thanks for being willing to step in and help out. For that alone we already recognise you as an ORFFAN. Nice welcome to from the FIXtures committee: “why don’t you play the top of the table Vultures just to get an idea of how easy it will be to climb out of the cellar.” Still there are some tasty draft picks in the MSD to boost the squad and, of course, the internal debate as to whether to rename the team. Hobart Hopefuls? Launceston Losers? Tasmanian Transitions? I am confident you’ll work it out TTH.
I like a theme to run through these missives. This week, every team has to field one. But not every team fields one and yet some teams field more than one. The consternation in our banter threads is one of the constants of ORFFA life. What am I talking about? It should be obvious - rucking hell. Jeez, some of them went big this week. Had some fun with Utube while putting this together, gosh there was some gret music “when I was young” – Eric Burdon and the Animals.
Missings (1220) v Wombats (1261)
The commish was a few short of a team but at least he had a ruck. Ryder (108) comfortably accounted for Lycett (86). However, the west coaster has played all eight games to date while Paddy has only made three appearances so far in 2018. He also has the curse of Gil’s Chinese experiment against him. So, if you cannot separate them on average (Ryder 80.7, Lycett 81.1) would you rather have Ryder’s total score of 242 or Lycett’s total of 649? Correct. Yep, it is easy to be wise in hindsight but this one is clear cut. Yet, there is something in the back of my brain that says Ryder has little competition for a game at Port, while Lycett is second to Nic Nat and has Vardy breathing down his neck (or so jimbo tells us). Some lessons there if you are going with one ruck in your squad. Note, Len also has Longer (the former #1 ruck at the aints) and Flynn an up and comer at guess where. So he has hedged his bets. Lenny, being young and risk seeking, has not. Three Degrees – “When will I see you again?”
Codpieces (1237) v Uglies (888)
Nathan Vardy has a tenuous link to a playing ruck, but jimbo has shown faith in him. Touching really, misplaced perhaps – but touching. Rhys Stanley is his back up. What a cute pair. Guess what they have in common? Both Librans? No. Both zeros this round? You got it. Things got a little ugly for the codpieces when bama’s boys turned up with Maxy (148). That’s a lot of points to start behind. For the visitors Leuenberger played a role most of us are familiar with, that of the non-rucking ruck. The ruck cupboard is pretty bare for both teams but Maxy’s durability means seldom are the Uglies “gawn” in that department. However, mimicking Maxy’x new lean physique, the battlers are pretty thin after Gawn. Brian Ferry – “Avalon” – especially the line “more than this …. Nothing.”
Lilacs (1062) v Warriors (1242)
Speaking of warriors, has anyone else noticed the improvement in the NZ Warriors in the NRL? No - didn’t think so.
The Lilacs do not lack in the ruck department. Sinclair (94) has been a revelation this year (especially to former owners who include both Chris and me). Many of you will recall jelly guy trying to gazump Jen by drafting Darcy Cameron in the PSD. That turned out a bit like the LLL’s – good for a laugh but not much chop in the ruck area. The lovelys also have Sam Naismith as a further insurance option. Nice. The Warriors appeared to be playing a ruck – Lobb (107) – but CD decided he is a F. I admire TiB for insisting he is a ruck but the hand ain’t listening. Dawson Simpson is TiB’s back up. There was an extended power cut recently in my home town and having a gas hob top I was feeling a bit superior about having hot water and being able to cook. Unfortunately, the spark is electric. I am not saying Dawson is electric but I think you get the point. Dusty Springfield – “Wishing and Hoping.”
Devils (1299) v Coal diggers (1188)
The devils have opted for a three ruck strategy – Nank (111), Roughead of the west (dnp) and million $ Tommy (87). Terrific structure but dmandrews set Boyd as an emergency and he did not play. We all have choices to make and we know what happens when we have to make choices – yep, zugzwang. Not a problem Banditto faced as he chose correctly from Sam Hayes (0), John Ceglar (0) and Sean Darcy (0). Rucks are typically tall and love the outdoors, so the head coal digger chose half of SPS. Mothers’ Day must be particularly confusing for an apple islander; lunch and a few drinks with their mother, wife and sister could be awkward. It is probably stretching the bounds of comedy too far to imagine a scene with our two protagonists and one “lady” in a restaurant. Yep, an open restaurant in Tassie on a Sunday is stretching it too far. Misex – “Computer Games.”
Battlers (1249) v Packers (847)
JC has opted for the three from the same club approach to the ruck problem; Jarrod Witts (65), Brayden Crossley (53, albeit as an E) and Thomas Nicholls (0). Not necessarily elegant, but a viable battlers’ solution. The set and forget option has a lot to commend it. Barring horrific injuries, you have 100% of a ruck’s score week in and week out. Tracey has adopted a similar approach but has ended up with the meatloaf solution. Majak Daw (80) and Braydon Preuss (0) would be a terrific compliment to Goldy, but “two out of three ain’t bad.” However, both set ups have an eye on the future and will send many a side packing. Incredibly, that catchy Timbuck 3 song just came up on my music rotation. How apt.
Nuffers (971) v Vultures (1346)
One thing worse than not having a starting ruck, is having a good one who is suspended or injured. NicNat looked natty at the tribunal but that was about it. TTH’s strategy might be to build a team around him. Could work, but will be WIP (work in progress for those of you not part of the chosen race*) for some time. Fizzy, started with the duo of Kreuzer (127) and Stef Martin (112) - the latter was impressive in a losing lions’ team. Not that the top of the table Vultures have much experience at losing. Ironic that neither Fitzy nor Stef had a ruck to compete against. Bette Midler – “The wind beneath my wings.” (ruck me, how did that slip into a great music session?)
* A chartered accountant mate calls those in his profession the chosen race. Luckily he has golf to fall back on as his “career” in comedy is going nowhere.
Inflatables (1157) v Cows (1241)
I have a theory that the CD team in the city of churches has not read the page of the manual that explains how to award points for ruck work. It means that cows’ management don’t have to face up to the reality that Sauce (51) is not that good anymore. The theory holds more water given that Paddy Ryder only scored 108 against Sauce. Beware rucking in SA. Thee cows ruck approach of three rucks from the same afl club will be test this week if Mr Jacobs is on birthing duties. The blimps have been afflicted by ruck disease but had a crack with Zac (Smith) this week and his 54 was a neat confirmation of the late Professor Stephen Hawkings’ little known afl theorem: 100% of an average players score will always exceed 50% of an average players score. So, 100% of 54 > 50% of the 46 his emergency ruck (K Jack) scored. QED. Nice one Stephen. As Chris will tell you “having a ruck occasionally is good for morale.” Joe Cocker – “Feeling alright’
Chooks (1250) v Cockies (1280)
CR’s ruck adventures have been well documented and many of us enjoyed the doco “you gotta know when to hold” so there was a delicious sense of schadenfreude when ant turned up with three (yes you read that correctly) playing rucks spread across the ruck line and the interchange line. And they went bang; Sandy (150) rolled back the years, Belly (97) had a laugh and Hickey (90) did well against the big Lurch. Enough rucking points to be quite cocky about. Historically our Chief has not been a man to be trifled with; Big Boy (99) stood up for the chooks but in turned out that Goldy (69) was more “brassy”. Ant and CR sides are both good examples of the scatter gun approach - if a ruck pops up draft it or trade for it. Steve Winwood, “If you see a chance, take it.”
Hopers (1353) v Hopeless (655)
Mild mannered sNOz dissed Mike when he opened the teams and banter thread for round 8. And with good reason – Darcy Cameron (0) and Archie Smith (0) is not the most feared combo in ORFFA. Not currently anyway. SnoZ knows it and so does Mike. Perhaps the Jelly Guy has been reading the thoughts of Warren Buffett on long term returns from investing? Perhaps not. On the other hand Grundy (137) is a star and Mason Cox (60) will retain his F/R designation for the foreseeable future. Nice handcuffing and so the ‘hoppers are sorted. Especially now the pies have worked out how to play together. I hope Jelly Guy is taking notes. “That’s how a superpower drafts”, at least I think that is what SnOz said just before the giant hopper mascot enveloped him. Crosby, Stills and Nash – Hopelessly Hoping.”
And so another week in ORFFA draws to a close. Nine winners and nine losers; gosh, we are a very balanced community. I hope you were nice to your Mother and, if she is no longer with us, thought about her once or twice. Sonny and Cher – “The beat goes on.”