Opinion

Putting limited ability to use

by
August 01, 2017

"The Gun" will return for Katamatite this weekend to try and lift the Tigers from the bottom of the table.

It has been a big week for the newsroom in the sporting arena, with two premierships and a senior football victory. Pictured are the mixed netball premiership winners Hardie's Heroes.

Before this edition of Musings kicks off I would like to draw on a quote from one of the greatest theatrical masterpieces in cinematic history.

‘‘Those who can’t do, teach; those who can’t teach, teach gym.’’

While in a literal capacity those sage words will not apply to this column, the meaning behind them will certainly be drawn on.

In my eyes, there are only two types of sports journalists.

The first category is pretty self-explanatory — the ‘‘jobs for the boys’’ retired professional athletes — who, through their elite experiences, are able to provide in-depth special comments which come from a point of difference the rest of the population could never hope to attain.

I find these journalists hit-and-miss, they are undoubtedly polarising and simply either work or do not work — there is no grey area.

The other section of the industry, where the vast majority of reporters fit, is the complete opposite.

Lacking the capabilities to play sport at the highest level, but making up for it with their ability to analyse and report on the actions within the sporting arena, these sports journalists satiate their yearning for the game by immersing themselves completely in it from the sidelines.

From an early age (five to be exact) I knew I wanted to cover sport for a living.

At about the same time I also realised my hopes of playing many sports at an elite level were slim at best, thus landing myself firmly in the latter category.

Convoluted prelude aside, the point I am trying to make is this: Most members of the sporting journalism community experience a distinct lack of success on the field or court, such is the nature of following sport from the sidelines from an early age.

Here at The News though, we are all about smashing stereotypes.

A mixed netball premiership on Monday and an indoor soccer flag on Thursday were bookended by breakthrough victories for the Katamatite Tigers’ reserves and seniors sides in recent weeks. All in all it has been a pretty successful fortnight for the newsroom.

While they all fail to reach the heights of an AFL grand final triumph, it shows maybe, just maybe, we know what we are talking about when it comes to sport.

I missed the netball success, but by all reports it was a masterclass in man-management from our very own Lauren Bordin.

Calming the often destructive ferocity of Adem ‘‘Bus Driver’’ Barolli by controlling the centre third herself, the other team never stood a chance as Hardie’s Heroes smoothly worked their way around the court with little-to-no fuss.

A similarly serene performance ensued Thursday.

With ‘‘The Great Wall’’ crumbling early in the first half to concede a 3-0 lead, The Law Abiding Sigurdssons never panicked en-route to a stirring 6-5 victory.

Ringing the changes regularly, the home town favourites were simply too tactically savvy for their opponents, fouling at exactly the right times to run the clock down late in the game.

And so we come to the football field.

Barolli will tell you all you need to know about Katamatite’s triumph — you barely have to ask him — but I want to focus on this week’s clash with Katandra.

Musings is all about finding a point of difference, so let’s preview the reserves clash, because battlers deserve some limelight as much as the best footballers in the land.

●The Picola District Football League south-east division reserves contest between Katamatite and Katandra on Saturday should be as enthralling as a top-of-the-table blockbuster.

Both sides have only secured two victories for the season, but do not let that fool you, it will be on for young and old at Katandra Recreation Reserve.

This will be a battle for the wooden spoon and neither team has room for another kitchen utensil.

The Kats struggled to find momentum last week against Tungamah and eventually lost by 78 points.

Fergus Russell, Luke Dunham, Jia Rodaughan, Tyson Cheer, Ross Hopkins and Darcy Simpson battled admirably all day in the defeat though and will again be integral this week.

Scoring has been an issue all year for the home side, but a leaky defensive end will need to be patched up against the Tigers.

The Kats have conceded 1353 points in 15 matches, allowing opposition sides to reach a ton six times.

For Katamatite, it was a somewhat distracted performance last week, with minds drifting to after the game celebrations early on in the clash against Waaia.

Stephen Steward, Simon Daniel, Michael O’Shea, Stephen Dawson, Lachlan Mann and Haimona Aston were still great in the 70-point loss.

A shoulder injury to stalwart Casey Brown would usually derail Katamatite’s chances of victory, but three major inclusions should hold the away side in good stead for this clash.

Early whispers are that Barolli, who in club circles is known as ‘‘The Difference’’, will be sensationally dropped during the week and, if his pride is not too dented, will line up for the reserves.

‘‘The Gun’’ Maher will look to take advantage of the statistically worst defence in the competition in a forward pocket, crumbing for fellow deadline-day recruit Oliver ‘‘11-second 100m’’ Caffrey, who will look to use his speed out of the square to catch the Kats off-guard.

With ‘‘Leaping’’ Leroy Ryan — who is leading the Tigers’ goalkicking tally with 10 majors — also a danger in attack, Katamatite will be confident of lifting itself out of the league’s cellar.

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