There are times when the Trinity AFL team resembles a symphony orchestra, and there are times when it sounds more like a jazz ‘jam-session’. Recently, at Tramway Oval, the First XVIII started like an orchestra. The composer (Coach) had done his work placing every note in its correct place, and clearly marking how each movement leads to the next.
The conductors (Captain and Vice-Captains) prepared their different sections to emerge from the chorus when it was their time to go solo. The opening bounce saw one of the finest centre clearances leading to an opening goal that I have ever witnessed, synchronicity which would not have been out of place at the Sydney Opera House.
Those of us lucky enough to be in the audience, were brought to our feet as the midfielders tapped the ball, ran into space and performed laser-like handballs. A slick handpass was received and then just quickly handballed to a galloping teammate.
With the path to goal cleared by a thumping shepherd, a wide open forward line was spotted (vacated by a beautifully orchestrated leading structure) and a deftly slotted 50 metre bouncing goal was achieved. In true concert tradition, the player responsible turned to his adoring fans to ask if they wanted an encore! We did!
At various times in this first movement we had impressive solo performances from key players putting Waverley under constant pressure. Players harassed, tackled and chased throughout the first half to make sure that the impressive Waverley midfielders never felt free or unfettered.
In the third quarter, the improvisation began. Some tired legs saw a relaxation in the structures that made the first half so impressive and controlled, and instead a free flowing jazz-feel emerged. Players decided when and where to play and Waverley took advantage of the syncopation and slipped in-between the beat, to put some scoreboard pressure on the men in green and white. The Captain had his work cut out for him marshalling his men to repel these interruptions, but he did have able support in the form of several first gamers who took strong marks and were able to clear congestion on the large Tramway Oval wings.
Even the coach felt the need to improvise, moving forwards back and backs forward proving effective thanks to the strength and aggression of experienced campaigners. To great effect, our centre-men decided on a quick key-change in their ruck strategy which restored our structure, and the resulting centre clearances must have been a demoralising sight for the Waverley mids. Both Trinity ruckmen finished the game with a superb overall hit-out percentage of 75 percent.
The final term built to a crescendo of repeat defensive efforts and the work of the backs, performing like the percussion section, kept the audience on the edge of their seats until the final siren brought our performance to a close with an emphatic 55-33 win against a highly-rated Waverley College. A good Aussie Rules team needs to have the structure of a Baroque Classic with the flexibility and genius of a Charlie Parker improvisation. Our challenge over the next eight rounds will be knowing which genre will get the job done.
Trinity Grammar School aims to provide the best environment for boys to flourish and develop. The unique programme of Sport that we offer plays a key role in this aim in many direct and indirect ways, and is an integral part of School life and a well-rounded education.
In addition, Trinity became the first school in Australasia to be accredited as a World Academy of Sport Athlete Friendly Education Centre, being one of only nine schools in the world to receive this accreditation.
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