Jack Riewoldt's telling response after Noah Cumberland drama in AFL

·Sports Reporter
·3-min read
Jack Riewoldt, pictured here consoling Noah Cumberland after Richmond's draw with Fremantle.
Jack Riewoldt consoles Noah Cumberland after Richmond's draw with Fremantle. Image: Getty

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.

Noah Cumberland, pictured here being consoled by Richmond teammates Jack Riewoldt and Dion Prestia.
Noah Cumberland is consoled by Richmond teammates Jack Riewoldt and Dion Prestia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

“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.

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.

Noah Cumberland, pictured here after Richmond's draw with Fremantle.
Noah Cumberland looks on after Richmond's draw with Fremantle. (Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)

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.”

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