The Yarra’s grand final farce, all Gill(igan)’s idea

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Just sit right back and you’ll hear a tale, a tale of a fateful idea. That started on the Yarra River, a grand final parade with 50 players on a barge. The coaches sat in tiny ships, and the skippers brave and sure. Nearby were millionaires, a couple at least in their shiny seats, hoping not to run ashore with mascots aboard. They headed off on a half-hour tour, yep, a half-hour tour.

All Gill(igan)’s idea. All Gill(igan)’s idea.

Perhaps the fact the above, sung to the tune of the Gilligan’s Island theme, neatly fits the schemozzle that occurred in Melbourne on Friday says enough about how the grand final parade up the famous Yarra River went.

Waiting time: Geelong’s Joel Selwood and Chris Scott.

Waiting time: Geelong’s Joel Selwood and Chris Scott.Credit:Phil Hillyard

To be blunt, the idea sank like a stone and should be an automatic entry into the grand final entertainment’s Hall of Shame alongside the Batmobile that appeared at Waverley in 1991 and Meatloaf’s performance before the 2011 grand final.

There had been trepidation with Gill (igan)’s idea before the players left on the barge with Geelong’s Zach Tuohy – who is from Ireland – using his trademark humour to describe what he thought about jumping on a boat the day before the biggest game of his career.

Luke Parker and John Longmire cruised up the Yarra River ahead of the grand final

Luke Parker and John Longmire cruised up the Yarra River ahead of the grand final

“I am not much of a pirate, I am basically made of lead so if I go overboard I am in strife,” Tuohy said. “Water is not for me. I’m generally much more at home on the golf course.”

His coach Chris Scott is more at home on fairways too, which is why when he was floating on a speedboat with Joel Selwood and the Cats’ mascot for 20 minutes before taking off he must have been wishing he had trod the same path he did in 2001 when, as a Brisbane Lions’ player, he played golf instead of attending the grand final parade.

The look on the face of Selwood and Parker’s teammates when they saw from their own barge their fearless leaders heading off in speedboats was priceless with Geelong’s Isaac Smith almost falling into the water he was laughing so hard.

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