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Big V stamps authority

  • Saturday, May 29 2010 @ 08:09 pm ACST
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General News

Last weekend the VFL crunched the WAFL at Leederville Oval in Perth by 55 points. It was a short lived revival for the Western Australian state league, having knocked off South Australia by 1 point the previous year.

It was an ominous performance by the Victorian league's players, and stamps them as clear favourites to take out the title as best state league in the current 3 year cycle.

The VFL raced to a big lead at the first break, and more goals early in the second quarter meant the result already looked sealed.

Full forward Matthew Little booted 7 goals for the visitors and won the VFL's best player award, the Frank Johnson Medal. Claremont's Luke Blackwell was awarded the Simpson Medal as best played for WA.

Despite strong growth in Queensland the big three states of Australian football are still Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia. That's reflected in the number of players drafted each year and also in the strength of their state leagues. The champion state league is decided by a 3 year cycle in which the leagues take it in turns to play each other. With State of Origin seemingly on the outer, it's the only chance for state versus state at senior level.

Last year the cycle began again, with the SANFL's best travelling to Perth to take on the WAFL. The locals came from behind to record a shock 1 point win, setting themselves up for a crack at the Big V this year, again on WA turf, and a win would clinch the title that has been South Australia's for a number of years. But it wasn't to be, with the VFL ruthlessly crushing the Sandgropers. Three years ago the Big V defeated the WAFL by 119 points in Victoria. The WA coach conceded the VFL was a better competition than their own, something that his SA counterpart wouldn't contemplate as the two leagues continue their battle to be regarded as second only to the AFL.

It sets the scene for Victoria versus SA next year to complete the 3 year cycle. If the VFL win then they will claim the title for the first time in many years, if the SANFL win it would share the games one win each between the three states - it's not clear to this author how the teams would then be split.

Medibank Stadium (Leederville Oval), May 22, 2010

WAFL       1.2    3.4    6.6    11.10 (76)
VFL          7.3    12.7  18.11  20.11 (131)

WAFL: 4 Jones, 3 Richardson, 1 Salecic, Krakouer, Hildebrandt, Brabazon
VFL: 7 Little, 3 Rose, 2 Breust, 1 McCorkell, Marigliani, Stockdale, Stephenson, Pinwell, Pederson, Johnson, Davies

WAFL: Blackwell, Rix, Brabazon, Hildebrandt, Sweet
VFL: Little, Curnow, Johnson, Rose, Pinwell, Sewell, Clifton, Blair