Robins’ fighting spirit
Monday, 12th May, 2014
The Robins produced a remarkable second half comeback to overrun the Bulldogs and register an eight point victory in Saturday’s game at the Jubilee Oval.
It is the second time in as many games that the Robins have clawed their way back to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.
The win now gives the Robins season a steady heartbeat.
In contrast, the loss for North could have a season defining effect as the season progresses.
The Robins had a number of changes to the team that was selected on Thursday night and they lost Heath Harris before the opening bounce.
They won the toss and ran to the Essential Energy end in the opening term.
In a bright start from both sides it was the Bulldogs who opened the scoring when Blake Clare back heeled the games first major.
A second soon followed through Kelly and the Bulldogs had raced to a 13 point lead.
The Robins finally settled mid-term and goals to Milne and Pettitt had the Robins back on level terms.
The Bulldogs again gained some ascendancy with two goals from Slater and the margin was again out to 13 points late in the term.
With one final push forward the Robins found Tonkin and his shot on the siren was true and the Bulldogs took a nine point lead into the first break.
The second term opened with North doing all the attacking in the opening minutes and goals to Pettitt, Richards and Beavan blew the margin out to 26 points.
West’s new recruit Robert Bates showed he is going to be a handy player for the Robins when he bobbed up to kick two on the trot to reduce the margin to 12 points.
At this stage the contest became a little heated and Naden and Clare were given a ten minute rest.
In this period the Bulldogs again took control with Kelly kicking his second and former-Robin Dalby kicking two in two minutes.
All of a sudden the Bulldogs had a 29 point lead and tempers again flared with Kelly and Agius sent to the pine for a blow.
The half finished with the Bulldogs holding a 30 point lead and looking seemingly in control of the contest.
The second half began with the Robins needing a lift and Perkins gave them the spark with a goal inside the opening minute.
Slater replied minutes later for North but the Robins had a sniff and the team responded with goals to Bates, Perkins and White and the margin had been cut to ten points midway through the term.
Hack kicked a steadier for North before Smith kicked a long bomb for the Robins.
With time running out Richards banana kick would be enough to give the Bulldogs a 17 point lead going into the final break with the contest now on.
The final term was promising to be a cracker.
The Robins had to score first and they did through Bates who was proving a handful.
When ‘Zip Zap’ McInnes kicked his first the margin was just four points with all the momentum leaning towards the Robins.
Against the flow the Bulldogs found Grundy and his goal gave them a point lead at the ten minute mark.
At this stage the Robins were relentless and when Perkins kicked his third the margin was just four points.
From the centre bounce the Robins went forward and Martin pounced to give them the lead for the first time.
A behind to North reduced the margin to just one point.
It was now desperate and frantic.
Two behinds and then a goal to Bates had the Robins up by nine points and got the crowd on their feet.
The Bulldogs went forward to find Hack and his goal reduced the margin to just three.
The Bulldogs went forward again and a snap for a behind with just one minute and ten to go reduced the margin to two points.
The Robins, with excellent ball control and movement, shifted the ball up field and it broke open when McInnes swooped.
He ran inside forward 50 to kick the match winner with 25 seconds left.
The Robins had again pulled a remarkable win and leave the Bulldogs lamenting a wasted afternoon.
West: R. Bates 5, B. Perkins 3, R. McInnes 2, D. Milne, C. Pettitt, J. Tonkin, J. White, C. Smith, B. Martin
North: E. Slater 3, J. Kelly 2, A. Richards 2, S. Dalby 2, T. Hack 2, B. Clare, A. Pettitt, Q. Beavan, K. Grundy
West: J. Naden, C. Pettitt, R. Bates, L. King, D. Milne, T. Andrews
North: J. Kelly, Q. Beavan, A. Richards, E. Slater, B. Clare, T. Barraclough
West: 3.1 (19) 5.5 (35) 10.7 (67) 16.10 (106)
North: 4.4 (28) 10.5 (65) 13.6 (84) 15.8 (98)
North: 8.12 (60)
West: 5.6 (36)
North: 14.24 (108)
West: 0.0 (0)