What went right?
An awful lot.
It can be forgotten in the wake of their shock Preliminary Final defeat. but when they took to the field that night against Collingwood, Richmond were overwhelming and deserved premiership favourites. The Tigers had swept almost all before them in a dominant home and away season that saw them arguably take their 2017 form to another level again.
It may be of little solace now when Tiger fans are wondering what might have been, but they were super for all but three hours in 2018.
What went wrong?
The first half of the Preliminary Final was perhaps the worst the Tigers have played for some time. With their season and back to back hopes on the line they had no answer to a Collingwood side that went about beating them at their own game.
For a side that took pressure football to new heights, their meek surrender in the face of an opposition onslaught will burn in the belly for a long time to come.
Is it snide to mention the travelling woes that plagued the Tigers in 2018 and saw them level with Carlton for interstate wins?
“I thought I had a pretty good year, pretty consistent. I just love the word consistent when you speak about players, and I feel like I brought that to the group. I just tried to play my role as well as I could for the Club and felt that I did that.”Jack Riewoldt on his season – Richmond Football Club Website
Riewoldt’s consistency throughout the 2018 season was a major factor in Richmond claiming the minor premiership after a dominant home and away season. For his efforts he was rewarded with his second Jack Dyer Medal as Richmond Best & Fairest, a third Coleman Medal, and selection in the All Australian team for the third time.
Richmond 16. 9. (105) def
Collingwood 12.5 (77)
Sitting first and third on the ladder, and both in good form, the Round 19 clash between Richmond and Collingwood was highly anticipated by the football world. The second largest home and away crowd to watch the two clubs play were treated to a match that more than lived up to the pre-game hype.
In a tight tussle, Richmond led for much of the day but found it difficult to shake a spirited Collingwood side and led by just four points at three quarter time. In the final quarter the Tigers were finally able to flex their muscle and with five goals to one for the term were able to power away to victory.
Room for improvement
With the recruitment of Tom Lynch it would seem that Richmond sees an opportunity to prosper with a more traditional forward structure rather than the one tall with a fleet of smalls that they have been forced into in recent times. The ruck is an area of concern too given Brodie Grundy’s dominant performance against Toby Nankervis.
Can’t be any lower because of the dominate season the Tigers had, but no higher because it didn’t end in a grand final, or a grand final win!
Thanks for taking the time to read our take on Richmond’s 2018 season. If you like what you read could you do us a favour and like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and let us know what you think we got right. (Or wrong!)