With a minute left in the end of the AFL’s round 22 Hawthorn – Geelong game, Paul Puopolo took a quick snap across the face of goal. Did it touch the behind post? Did it go straight through? Viewers were lucky enough to be subjected to the sight of an extended conference and then a review, to decide the, ahem, critical matter of whether Hawthorn won by 23 points, or 22.
In May 1994, 40,000 fans saw an Essendon team featuring James Hird, Dustin Fletcher and Mark Thompson play Carlton (Greg Williams, Steven Silvagni, Anthony Koutoufides) at Waverley Park. At three-quarter time, the Bombers led 7.7 to 4.14 and, in a real rarity, the Waverley Park architecture was more attractive than the game it was hosting.
But, as the final quarter progressed, the game gradually became a classic – of a sort. The Bombers held on to a one-point lead – 9.9(63) to a regrettable 7.20(62) – and as the final seconds dwindled, a sequence of throw-ins started, which the Bombers repeatedly smashed back over the boundary line. The Bombers wound the clock down to zero and when the siren went, they and their fans celebrated whilst the Blues and their fans were, I imagine, pretty annoyed.