The big talking point from AFL Round 10? The sky’s the limit for Port Adelaide, who have turned Adelaide Oval into the Portress and look unstoppable.
Over in Melbourne, Adelaide’s revival of the 2014 season came to a shuddering halt when missed opportunities gifted the game to Carlton by just five points; (match summary below).
North Melbourne got a spray from their coach; “It was an appalling effort early and when you dish up that sort of performance early on, you can’t walk away happy or satisfied.” Brad Scott not gilding the lily even though the Kangaroos got within 20 points of Geelong at the Cats’ home-ground fortress.
Gold Coast continue to break new ground – their first time into the top four, easily their best winning streak of five in a row, their sixth win at home from the last seven starts.
The Sun’s outstanding season also highlights how badly their expansion partner Greater Western Sydney are struggling. The Giants entered the AFL a year behind the Suns, but are a lot further back in terms of development.
Richmond forward Jack Riewoldt kicked 11 goals. Forget about foot-in-mouth and kick-up-the-backside. On Saturday, Jack’s boot did all the talking.
West Coast were only trailing by three points late in the last quarter when Brodie Grundy was awarded a very questionable 50m penalty. Rather than having a long-range shot, he was able to kick a crucial goal from point-blank range and the Magpies won by eight points.
And what about the Browlnow? Adam Cooney (Dogs) should be cleared of his report for front-on contact with Gary Ablett. But Ablett could be in trouble for an incident off the ball involving his tagger Liam Picken.
Hamish Hartlett (PA) will come under video scrutiny for his contact off the ball with Bradley Hill.
On the injury front, there were teeth on the ground and a few sore heads; T Lonergan (Geel, concussion) J Tippett (NM, pectoral muscle) S Coniglio (GWS, shoulder) J Kelly (GWS, eye) D Jackson (Rich, groin) E Yeo (WC, teeth) N Brown (Coll, shoulder) J Frost (Coll, concussion) A Monfries (PA, ankle) B McEvoy (Haw, leg) S Day (GC, shoulder).
GEELONG 5.5 10.9 13.14 16.15 (111)
NORTH MELBOURNE 2.2 5.4 9.8 13.13 (91)
Goals: Geelong: T Hawkins 4 J Bartel 2 J Murdoch 2 M Duncan 2 C Enright G Horlin-Smith J Selwood J Stringer M Blicavs S Motlop. North Melbourne: D Petrie 3 L Thomas 3 R Bastinac 2 R Nahas 2 A Black J Ziebell M Daw.
Best: Geelong: T Hawkins J Kelly C Guthrie J Selwood M Stokes J Bartel. North Melbourne: L Greenwood S Atley B Harvey L Thomas R Bastinac J Ziebell.
Injuries: Geelong: T Lonergan (concussion). North Melbourne: J Tippett (pectoral).
Umpires: Chris Donlon, Matt Stevic, Jason Armstrong.
Official Crowd: 27,402 at Simonds Stadium.
RICHMOND 8.0 14.2 21.4 24.10 (154)
GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY 1.5 1.6 3.9 5.11 (41)
Goals: Richmond: J Riewoldt 11 B Ellis 2 B Griffiths 2 B Houli 2 T Vickery 2 M McDonough N Foley S Edwards S Grigg T Cotchin. Greater Western Sydney: J Cameron R Palmer S Coniglio T Scully W Hoskin-Elliott.
Best: Richmond: J Riewoldt D Martin B Deledio S Hampson B Houli B Ellis. Greater Western Sydney: D Shiel A Treloar W Hoskin-Elliott C Hampton.
Injuries: Richmond: D Jackson (leg). Greater Western Sydney: J Kelly (eye) S Coniglio (shoulder).
Umpires: Justin Schmitt, Jeff Dalgleish, Nicholas Foot.
Official Crowd: 8,331 at Spotless Stadium.
COLLINGWOOD 5.0 7.3 11.4 17.7 (109)
WEST COAST 5.2 9.5 11.10 15.11 (101)
Goals: Collingwood: J Blair 3 D Beams 2 J Elliott 2 A Fasolo B Grundy B Macaffer J White J Witts L Ball S Pendlebury S Sidebottom T Cloke T Goldsack. West Coast: J Cripps 3 D Cox 2 J Hill 2 M Priddis 2 S Hurn 2 E Yeo J Darling J Kennedy S Wellingham.
Injuries: Collingwood: N Brown (shoulder) J Frost (concussion). West Coast: E Teo (teeth).
Umpires: Chris Kamolins, Brett Rosebury, David Harris.
Official Crowd: 53,049 at MCG.
PORT ADELAIDE 4.2 8.3 11.7 15.10 (100)
HAWTHORN 2.3 4.4 10.6 13.8 (86)
Goals: Port Adelaide: A Monfries 4 C Wingard 3 H Hartlett 2 R Gray 2 J Polec J Schulz K Mitchell T Boak. Hawthorn: J Gunston 3 L Breust 3 J Lewis 2 S Burgoyne 2 B Hartung G Birchall M Hallahan.
Best: Port Adelaide: T Boak J Polec C Wingard A Monfries Brad Ebert M Broadbent. Hawthorn: J Lewis L Breust S Burgoyne M Suckling I Smith J Gunston.
Injuries: Port Adelaide: A Monfries (ankle). Hawthorn: B McEvoy (corked thigh).
Umpires: Robert Findlay, Luke Farmer, Brendan Hosking.
Official Crowd: 52,233 at Adelaide Oval.
GOLD COAST 4.0 7.2 15.9 18.11 (119)
WESTERN BULLDOGS 3.3 5.8 6.10 10.14 (74)
Goals: Gold Coast: C Dixon 4 T Lynch 4 B Matera 3 H Bennell 2 L Russell 2 D Swallow M Shaw Z Smith. Western Bulldogs: A Cooney 2 D Giansiracusa 2 J Tutt 2 K Stevens L Dahlhaus R Griffen R Murphy.
Best: Gold Coast: D Prestia J Harbrow T Lynch M Shaw G Ablett. Western Bulldogs: M Boyd R Griffen T Liberatore J Tutt A Cooney L Picken.
Injuries: Gold Coast: S Day (shoulder). Western Bulldogs: Nil.
Reports: Gold Coast: Nil. Western Bulldogs: A Cooney (Bulldogs) high contact.
Umpires: Ben Ryan, Mathew Nicholls, Leigh Fisher.
Official Crowd: 14,235 at Metricon Stadium.
CARLTON 2.2 4.2 8.5 12.9 (81)
ADELAIDE 1.4 2.7 7.12 10.16 (76)
Goals: Carlton: T Menzel 3 S Docherty 2 A Everitt C Yarran D Ellard D Thomas J Waite K Simpson L Casboult. Adelaide: E Betts 4 C Cameron D Mackay M Jaensch S Kerridge S Thompson T Walker.
Best: Carlton: K Simpson B Gibbs D Thomas B McLean J Waite C Yarran. Adelaide: S Jacobs P Dangerfield E Betts S Thompson R Douglas R Laird.
Injuries: Carlton: D Buckley (hip). Adelaide: P Dangerfield (back).
Umpires: Simon Meredith, Sam Hay, Matthew Leppard.
Official Crowd: 32,419 at MCG.
Bye – Brisbane Lions, Essendon, Fremantle, Melbourne, St Kilda, Sydney
LADDER AFTER ROUND 10
P W L t PC Pts
Port Adelaide 9 8 1 145.8 32
Geelong 9 7 2 117.0 28
Gold Coast 9 7 2 112.6 28
Hawthorn 9 6 3 152.6 24
Sydney 9 6 3 124.9 24
Collingwood 9 6 3 107.9 24
Fremantle 9 5 4 117.6 20
North Melbourne 9 5 4 105.9 20
West Coast 9 4 5 125.6 16
Adelaide 9 4 5 102.3 16
Essendon 9 4 5 98.6 16
Carlton 9 4 5 86.7 16
Richmond 9 3 6 102.8 12
Western Bulldogs 9 3 6 4 84.3 12
Melbourne 9 3 6 78.7 12
St Kilda 9 3 6 68.1 12
GWS 9 2 7 68.6 8
Brisbane Lions 9 1 8 54.8 4
28: J Riewoldt (Richmond) 11
27: L Breust (Hawthorn) 3
26: J Schulz (Pt Adel) 1
25: J Kennedy (West Coast) 1, T Hawkins (Geelong) 4
24: N Riewoldt (St Kilda) 0
22: T Lynch (Gold Coast) 4, J Gunston (Hawthorn) 3
21: C Wingard (Pt Adel) 3
20: J Roughead (Hawthorn) 0
ADELAIDE V CARLTON Match report:
Carlton has dug deep to earn a stirring five-point win over an Eddie Betts-led Adelaide at the MCG.
The 12.9 (81) to 10.16 (76) victory looked unlikely at many stages, with the Crows roaring back into the contest after trailing by 20 points in the third quarter.
Carlton old boy Betts produced two final term goals to inspire an Adelaide revival.
With a kick separating the sides for the dying minutes, several massive moments all broke the Blues’ way.
A harsh deliberate out of bounds put the ball in Josh Jenkins’ hands who could not convert.
With Rory Sloane bearing down on goal, Andrejs Everitt produced a remarkable tackle to stop him kicking a winner.
And the siren sounded while Charlie Cameron conspired to drop a mark 40 metres from goal.
Truthfully, the match was described accurately by Wayne Carey as a “snorefest” at half-time, featuring more turnovers and clangers than goals.
Adelaide produced an unrecognisable performance compared to their last-out win against Collingwood, looking indecisive on the ball and inaccurate in front of goal.
But after the break, the contest caught fire, with both teams awake to the prospect of making ground on the top eight.
Kade Simpson impressed with 36-touches, while Patrick Dangerfield willed on the Crows despite a back complaint.
Carlton coach Mick Malthouse would have seen plenty to improve on, especially in the first half, but saluted the effort to grind out the victory.
“It was a tough hard win,” he said.
“Just pleased to get a victory really against a very good football side.”
Malthouse tried to avoid singling out efforts from his players, instead pointing to a team performance that he suggested may not have been possible last year.
“Defensively to just hold out and still have control of the game and of the occasion, that’s so vital.”
Simpson’s 36-possession haul was a “very brave” performance, with Bryce Gibbs and Dale Thomas also impressive.
Thomas kicked a last quarter goal that capped his best performance in the navy blue.
Beaten coach Brenton Sanderson could find positives in Betts’ four-goal showing but said their woeful kicking was decisive.
“We didn’t take our opportunities, we came in at halftime 2.7 and if that’s 7.2, we’re three or four goals up and we’re starting to roll,” he said.
“It was an ugly contest and unfortunately for us we were the losers.”
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