For the second-straight week a final-second brain fade from a Richmond player has cost the Tigers a shot at victory, leading to a dramatic draw with the Fremantle Dockers at Marvel Stadium.
With the scores level at 52-apiece, Tigers rising star Noah Cumberland claimed a mark 50 metres from goal.
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However, despite the Tigers needing only a behind to snatch victory, Cumberland opted to play on instead of choosing to stop and take a set shot at goal.
Much to Cumberland’s despair, the final siren sounded a matter of seconds later, forcing the Tigers to share the spoils with Fremantle.
Cumberland wasn’t the only Tiger with a chance to win the game for Richmond late in the fourth quarter, with Noah Balta also having a set shot opportunity, only to dwell on the footy too long and be forced to play on, having his kick smothered.
Speaking to ABC Sport following the contest, Richmond vice-captain Jack Riewoldt refused to lay the blame for the missed opportunity on Cumberland or Balta.
“You always look at the last few seconds and define the game by that, but there's so many little moments that happen over the journey," Riewoldt said.
“I think for both the Noahs it's just, it is what it is, it's footy. You can chose to dwell on it or he can chose to grow.
“He [Cumberland] won't be defined by tonight.
“It’s the role of the leaders to get around him and make sure the sun comes up tomorrow for him.”
The final second decision is set to overshadow an otherwise outstanding performance from Cumberland, who finished the contest with 12 disposals, six tackles and a goal.
Appreciation post for what Noah Cumberland did for four quarters of footy tonight ✨
— Marnie Vinall (@marnievinall) July 22, 2022
Unfortunately Noah Cumberland was more like Noah Wareness #AFLTigersFreo
— Jason Titheradge (@jtitheradge1) July 22, 2022
More late drama costs Richmond dearly
Cumberland’s decision to play on at the siren comes just a week after fellow Tiger Jake Aarts made a similar error in judgement in the Tigers’ loss to North Melbourne.
Ironically, Cumberland was the Tigers player who picked out Aarts inside 50 on that occasion, only for Aarts to surge forward towards goal before being run down.
Aarts temporarily deactivated his Instagram account after copping abuse from social media trolls.
Richmond now find themselves in eighth place on the AFL ladder, fighting to keep their finals hopes alive.
Fox Footy pundit Jonathan Brown said the Tigers were the masters of their own fate, after butchering multiple close games over the course of the season.
“Richmond should be in the top four – knocking on the door at least,” Brown said.
“Since Round 6, five games decided by a goal or less. They’ve lost four of them and a draw.
“They’ve only get themselves to blame.”
Noah Cumberland would clearly be devastated with his decision to play on but for a player that’s playing his third game he has;
* Had 16 shots on goal
* set up Aarts to kick a winning goal
* position himself to win the game for us this week
we’ve got a beauty here
— The Richmond Journey (@JourneyRichmond) July 22, 2022
I don’t blame Cumberland. He’s a winner. Was trying to win. The kid was absolutely fantastic again tonight. We’ve found one here.
— Ando (@Tigers_of_Old) July 22, 2022
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