Richmond supporters rally for AFL grand final

Roar: Richmond supporter Jenny Blake was in her last year of high school when the Tigers last won the premiership.

Roar: Richmond supporter Jenny Blake was in her last year of high school when the Tigers last won the premiership.

The long wait is over - after 35 long years Richmond is back into the big dance and there are a few locals who are over the moon.

Naracoorte’s Jenny Blake is Tigers mad, she was in her last year of high school in 1980, when they last won a premiership.

“Dale Weightman was my hero...I was in a class of 18 and 16 were going for Collingwood and two of us were going for Richmond,” Jenny said.

“Bruce Tempany broke his arm a week before and after they won the premiership I wrote them a letter congratulating them and asked how (Tampany) was, and I got a reply.”

Jenny has been a Richmond member for 20 years and used to listen to the radio, marking down all the goals and points, she knew all the players, and she’s desperate to see them on top again.

“I’m still pinching myself that we’re in another grand final, I’m ecstatic,” she said.

“I’ve been waiting for this since we lost to Carlton in 1982, we’ve been in finals since and haven’t looked like we’ve done anything.

“I’ll watch it at home and try not to be too loud.”

Despite growing up with a Melbourne supporter and a Hawthorn follower, in her mother and father, Jenny followed her auntie into the Tiger Army, and said while she’s not overly confident in Saturday’s result she’ll always love her Tiges.

“I’m a bit worried in some ways, Richmond were annihilated by the Crows in the home and away rounds, but they’ve grown a lot since then and I think (grand final) will come down to who can be competitive,” she said.

“We say Richmond may disappoint, but we’re always loyal, we don’t jump ship and we live in hope.”

Meanwhile, Garry Lomman’s love of the Tigers began when he was just a youngster, stemming from specific family connections.

“It comes from the Kyby (Kybybolite) Tigers, and I have family in Adelaide who go for Glenelg,” Garry said.

“So I thought I’d stick with the yellow and black and go for Richmond.”

Garry said he’s overjoyed to finally see his Tigers in the big dance.

“It’s magnificent – I love it – I’d never seen (their last flag) because I was only 10 in 1982, so I can’t wait,” he said.

“I’d give up beer to go to the grand final.

“I reckon they’ll go alright, I’m quietly confident – I reckon they’ll win, they’ll be too much pressure for the Crows.”

The passionate Tigers fan said he’ll be watching the grand final from Katarapko on the river, with his father-in-law, an equally as zealous Crows supporter.

“If Richmond lose I’ll have to go for a swim to get away from him,” he laughed.

This story Hey, Richmond is playing too! first appeared on Naracoorte Herald.