Snapshot: Gill could still cut the mustard down at Warrnambool

Many public figures in sport carry the unfortunate burden of their least favourite memories being recalled most often.

Think of Luke Nolen dropping his hands on Black Caviar at Ascot or Cale Hooker chasing Lance Franklin down the wing of the MCG.

Think of the infamous mustard jacket AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan wore to the Warrnambool races.

Well, it would be remiss of Snapshot to not honour the fact it is exactly 10 years this week since the chief made that fateful decision a couple of years before he elevated himself to the top job he has, since Friday, held for eight years.

AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan has not managed to part ways with his infamous mustard jacket he wore at WarrnamboolCredit:The Age

The advent of AFLW, the successful navigation of the COVID-19 crisis and the game’s continued growth might have occurred under McLachlan’s watch, but we’ll keep coming back to the fashion faux pas just to keep him grounded.

Now we can reveal that, despite the jacket holding such a unique place in Australia’s sporting history, McLachlan was happy to see the back of it when he handed it over to 3AW radio presenter Ross Stevenson in a ceremonial gesture at a restaurant one evening.

Stevenson, both a mad Hawks fan and a lover of horse racing, had ribbed McLachlan about the jacket to the point where the only response was to give him the damned jacket.

However, Stevenson didn’t hold on to it for long.

In a moment of madness, and despite the garment’s potential to appreciate faster than the inflation rate, Stevenson returned the jacket to McLachlan. That is a series of hot potato handballs that left the much maligned jacket in the same hands it started.

Yes, McLachlan still possesses the jacket that surely needs to be auctioned at some stage to raise money given its unique place in Victoria’s sporting history!

Warrnambool races are a feature of Victorian life early in the AFL season.Credit:Getty Images

It would be sure to fetch a price as McLachlan found out how large his profile has become in the past decade when he was snapped with friends at The Ohel in Queens, New York on the weekend with the image circulating on social media like wildfire.

Power out

Fremantle escaped returning to a dark dressing room at GMHBA Stadium by just five minutes after a power blackout in the Reg Hickey stand occurred on Saturday at about the same time the Dockers shut Geelong down to win their first game at the venue since 2015.

Stadium officials were relieved the Dockers only had to put up with a media conference in the toilets – the site where former Fremantle coach Ross Lyon delivered his “you’re quite brilliant Shane” spray to 3AW caller Shane McInnes – rather than singing their theme song in darkness.

The Dockers celebrate.Credit:Getty Images

Ironically, the power blackout occurred on the same day Chris Scott threatened to equal the number of times Hickey had coached Geelong to victory despite coaching 36 fewer games. Alas, Scott’s 184th win escaped him, with the Cats now heading to play the Giants to see whether he can reach that mark quicker than any coach before him.

Perhaps Hickey was making a statement.

Tigers team

Some clubs will go to great lengths to keep selection under wraps and their members in the dark about injuries, so the Tigers’ approach to naming their team on Thursday night before their match against the Eagles was refreshing.

Richmond named Jayden Short in the centre, and then he duly attended the first centre bounce of his career while Noah Balta was named at full-back after spending most of the season up forward. He played in defence, with Tigers pair Jack Riewoldt and Tom Lynch, named in the forward pockets, playing as the team’s talls in attack.

Richmond hid their plans in plain sight and went out to defeat the hapless Eagles by 109 points, Damien Hardwick’s third biggest win as Tigers coach.

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