Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Ding Ding! Round 3

First the news that Jacob's season is over, as they lost their semi-finals on Saturday. They were one down, then equalised in the 2nd half, so it went to extra time. At that point Keiitchi and I (the coaches) put Max, one of our best players who we'd convinced to play the last few games in defence, up front. The defence collapsed, as we have seen before when we've done the same thing. As Jacob reprimanded, "It wasn't a risk Dad - it was just a mistake." I have to agree with him, and in the proper order of things, we coaches take full responsibility for the loss.

But the boys had a great season and have all grown as players and as young men. God knows I've learned a lot as well. And the Indoor season starts next month, so the round ball rolls on.

I'm enjoying this tipping competition. Clearly in the first round we were virtually guessing as we could have got more correct results by a random result generator (we got 11 of 44 results right between us). In the second round we did much better - 18 of 56 possible correct results (I'm not talking about scores) - but it's still interesting that a bunch of die-hard soccer fans couldn't quite get a third of the results correct, with essentially 3 choices for each call. The random generator would still have been odds on to beat us. Surely as the season goes on and we get familiar with the teams and their form, we can do much better.

An advantage of tabulating the scores is that you can see the patterns, and of course it's the games we completely fail to predict en masse which are the important ones to note. We collectively found Central Coast's win and the draw between Newcastle and Queensland very predictable, and although some of us called it each way, not one of us picked that Sydney and Adelaide would draw. Especially as this comp is between a bunch of folk who allegedly have some idea of what we're talking about, it's interesting data. Thankfully as well it's a much bigger sample than last year, but there were patterns last year as well, which were not easy to spot without a clear table, so for posterity I've tabulated last years comp as well. You can find it by clicking the 'Season 2' tab at the top of the Blogger's Cup Table. I've got a little bit more to do on it and I'll get to it soon.

Wes, Mike, Wayne and Dave have already tipped Round 3 in comments on the Round 2 post.

My tips:
Queensland vs Central Coast Mariners
Roar 3:2
Another bloody Thursday night game - at 8pm! Jacob has school in the morning. Don't worry our priorities are clear and we'll be there. I've instructed Jacob to get his weekly homework done tonight and Wednesday.

Adelaide vs Melbourne
Adelaide 2:0
Melbourne will recover I reckon and start to kick some ass in round 5 or 6. Adelaide have hit the ground running and aren't going to stumble yet. I have no idea why I think that, and if history is a guide my predictions are approximately as accurate as a random generator would be.

Perth vs Sydney
1:0
Sydney are in danger of gaining this reflexive underdog-supporter's sympathy for the problems with their troops. I think they have some hubris issues though.

Wellington vs Newcastle
2:1
If anyone can help, I'm very, very keen to bookmark an amateur A-League blog from Wellington. If they're what they're promising, the fans should generate a blog or two before long if they haven't already.

Good luck everyone.

It says at the top of this page that I'm a philosopher so I better occasionally say something philosophical. It also says I'm probably mad - a crucial qualifier.

Why do I pray to the infinite? Well there are in the annals of humanity thousands of gods, all mentally graven images (thus, incidentally, false idols according to the second of the 10 commandments). There is only one infinite and it is quite clearly incomprehensible, undescribable and, to add to the anxiety of it all, all-powerful.

Often atheists, who are generally very spiritually thoughtful people, choose not to pray at all, but I think they lose something. It's my view - barely defensible in a scientific way I admit - that the evolution of our mental equipment went alongside the development of early religion, and that those creatures who could, as their consciousness radically expanded, make some peace with this unknown 'other', so enormous and frightening, by finding a connection with it, however false in the eyes of many moderns, tended to survive because they were less inclined to go mad. It may offend some, but I find it interesting that the first tenet of AA and other addiction management organisations (of which I've never been a member, but know some who are very gratefully so) is to embrace the idea of a superior being. Meanwhile however the 'infinite' is a completely rational, secular idea which we can clearly and succinctly fail to grasp. If no one else finds it a useful mechanism to get through life, that's fine because I do.

I pray to the infinite (ok, I call it God in my own space, because it's shorter and I know what I mean) every day. Usually the prayer is "Hello," but sometimes I also say, "Thanks." It certainly can't 'hear' me, but my active mental acknowledgment of the all-powerful unknowable everything, I sincerely believe, actually facilitates a successful dance with the universe - by which I just mean getting through with a smile, and even - this is ridiculous of course and I only have an intuitive accumulation of anecdotal evidence to go by - having serendipity and 'luck' work a little extra my way. I don't understand the universe at all, but I suspect there's a little more to its connectivity than we think. Being mentally alien to it is a bad risk I reckon.

Religion, in my humble view, is to madness what masturbation is to rape, and what soccer is to tribal warfare. It's an arbitrary civilised cultivation of the creative fulfillment of a need which goes back hundreds of thousands of years of evolutionary psychology.

Please forgive my indulgence here, and I am not an evangelist. It's quite irrelevant to me whether anyone gives two shits about my philosophical viewpoint.

To the infinite, may all the A-League games this week be fair with flair, may there be good sportsmanship on and off the field and may there be no serious injuries.

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10 Comments:

Blogger john said...

Hi Hamish Tips

Queensland 4
Central Coast Mariners FC 0

Adelaide 3
Melbourne Victory FC 0 (finals revenge)

Perth 0
Sydney FC 0
(perhaps Perth will never score

Wellington 0
Newcastle Jets FC 0 (are these 2 battling for the wooden spoon)

September 04, 2007 8:23 pm  
Anonymous Eric said...

My tips:

Queensland Roar 2
Central Coast Mariners 2

Adelaide 1
Melbourne Victory 1

Perth 1
Sydney FC 1

Wellington 2
Newcastle Jets 0

September 05, 2007 9:33 am  
Blogger Neil said...

Here are my tips:

Central Coast 2
Queensland 0

Melbourne 1
Adelaide 1

Newcastle 0
Wellington 1

Perth 1
Sydney 1

September 05, 2007 4:57 pm  
Anonymous jacob said...

hello hello dad
here are my tips:

Central Coast 1
QLD Roar 2

Melbourne 2
Adelaide 2

Newcastle 3
Wellington 2

Perth 1
Sydney 1

September 05, 2007 6:36 pm  
Blogger Jeccy - for the Roar said...

Here goes:

Queensland 2
Central Coast 2

Melbourne 2
Adelaide 1

Newcastle 3
Wellington 2

Perth 0
Sydney 2

September 05, 2007 6:36 pm  
Anonymous wayne said...

hey thats cool Hamish, the infinite by any other name would sound as sweet...sometimes ya watch,sometimes ya play..now about those dice...

September 05, 2007 8:24 pm  
Blogger Cecilia said...

I will now pay attention to what I cut and paste!

Queensland vs Central Coast Mariners
Roar to win, 3:1
Mrja's on fire and the Mariners defence was in good nick. However, with Wilko, Heffernan and their young gun of a keeper Central Coast may be a bit leaky! The return on Moore and Tiatto should help out Queensland, and perhaps the Matt and Mass combination can get into gear with a bit of Marcinho!


Adelaide vs Melbourne
Melbourne to win, 1:2
I don't/can't tip against my team. It will be my downfall, I know. Burns will have some brilliance (hence the goal - he is playing, right? Ineligible for the first Olyroos match?), but the removal of Archie and the unlikely event that Merrick tries something new (Kaz AND Carlos, ole!) will brighten up the midfield and the whole team. I'm delusional, I know.

Perth vs Sydney
Draw, 0:0
Perth are solid. Sydney have Necevski. He was awesome last year for Newcastle. Stalemate.

Wellington vs Newcastle
Wellington to win, 2:1
They're back at home and want to show their fans that New Zealand can produce a performing football team. Newcastle will be down a few players due to the Olyroos squad and some train-ons, giving Herbert the opportunity to get some points (intentionally in plural form).

****
I just went lurking for you Hamish - this is all I came up with:

http://virtuphill.blogspot.com/

I will now go trolling for you (hehe, I like trolling, so it's not a bother!)

September 05, 2007 10:40 pm  
Blogger The Round Ball Analyst said...

hamish and jacob, congrats on making the semis, some achievement.

tough, tough weekend, got absolutely no confidence whatsoever in my tips;

QR 2 CCM 3
AU 1 MV 1
PG 2 SFC 1
WP 1 NJ 1

September 06, 2007 5:32 pm  
Blogger Dane said...

Stupid Thursday game catching me out.... Well I would have tipped Qld to win anyway so doesn't really matter haha. For the rest of the round:

Melbourne 1 - 3 Adelaide
Perth 0 - 2 Sydney
Wellington 2 - 1 Newcastle

September 07, 2007 3:05 pm  
Blogger Cecilia said...

wOOt! I got one result right!!!

September 10, 2007 7:16 am  

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