Questions from a Queenslander: Why do you get a point for missing?


IT’S the same crap every week.

“At least in our sport you don’t get a point for missing.”

It never gets old.

But the existence of the behind in the AFL is what separates us from the animals – namely soccer.

Granted, soccer does have its value. It’s like the Antique Roadshow of the sporting world – long periods of vapidness broken by the occasional thrill of something sort of interesting happening.

It’s a simple game. And the world needs simple.

We AFL fans don’t.

The behind separates us from the World Game by creating scoring variation.

The one benefit of ditching the point – St Kilda win the 2010 grand final, not Collingwood.

Without it, we would have had nine draws last season.

NINE. When you consider that people start burning effigies of Gillon McLachlan whenever just one draw occurs, you start seeing the behind’s value.

From 1897 to 2014, 14,481 games were played with 151 draws. Eliminating the behind boosts that to 940 draws.

Yeah, nah, screw that.

The origin of the point isn’t overly clear, though.

AFL records have the scoring system changing from the one goal=one point to the current system in 1897. They don’t say why. They don’t say who made the decision. And they don’t mention whether the founders knew the same tedious question would be asked by Queenslanders and Sydneysiders alike in the decades to come.

What is clear, though, is if we lost the point, the point of the game would be lost – and that’s the real point.



One Reply to “Questions from a Queenslander: Why do you get a point for missing?”

  1. I first introduced a couple of Canadians and a Pom to the grand old game with that 2010 (first) grand final. To say they were confused and bemused would be an understatement.

    But seeing as the Canadians like playing the same team 7 times in a row, I don’t think they have much of a leg to stand on.

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