COLLINGWOOD 3.2 6.7 10.13 15.17 (107)
FREMANTLE 0.2 2.6 6.6 12.6 (78)
Collingwood have overcome a dour Fremantle by 43 points t0 make it 10 wins from the last 10 matches and move one game clear at the top of the ladder.
The Magpies’ win was set up in the first half as they were able to restrict the Dockers to only two goals – both coming in the second quarter – all while kicking six of their own. From that point on, Collingwood were able to maintain the lead they had worked so hard to construct.
Fremantle challenged on occasions and it appeared that an upset was a remote possibility but Collingwood kept responding and maintained a comfortable margin.
The game bore all the hallmarks of a typical game involving a Ross Lyon-coached team. The match was riddled with stoppages and there were countless occurrences where Fremantle did not have a single player in their forward half.
This tactic was successful to an extent, Fremantle were able to restrict the Pies to only six goals in a half they dominated. However their defensive work was all for nothing as they had close to no targets from the wing forward. This was evident in their amazingly low, 33 inside 50s.
The second half of the game was relitively subdued despite Fremantle putting on some scoring pressure. The Dockers held their forward structure better and through Matthew Pavlich , they were able pull back the margin to as close as 17 points at one stage. However as the best sides do, Collingwood always had an answer.
With the contested nature of the game, it was the midfielders who thrived. Dane Swan was the best of the bunch, amassing yet another stack of possessions, this time he gathered 42. Swan’s influence was not just confined to the midfield either as he also pushed forward for two goals.
Swan was accompanied by Dayne Beams who continued his brilliant form and Jarrod Blair who collected 32 disposals. Both of these players have stepped up since the loss of Luke Ball and they have thrived in the stoppages. Darren Jolly also played one of his best games of the season giving the Magpies’ midfield the advantage with 43 hit-outs.
For Fremantle, Pavlich was the standout. He kicked five goals from limited opportunities. Pavlich marked everything that came in his direction and may have gotten the Dockers close if they got the ball to him more often. Michael Barlow also returned to his pre-injury form, gathering 37 touches and putting up a fight against the dominant Collingwood midfield.
1) Dane Swan (Collingwood)
2) Jarrod Blair (Collingwood)
3) Dayne Beams (Collingwood)
Collingwood: Dawes 3, Goldsack 2, Swan 2, Cloke 2, Paine 2, Thomas 2, Beams, Buckley
Fremantle: Pavlich 5, Mayne 2, Broughton 2, Clarke, Mundy, Pearce
Collingwood: Swan, Beams, Blair, Jolly, Wellingham,
Fremantle: Pavlich, McPharlin, Barlow, Griffin, Mundy
Collingwood: Travis Cloke replaced by Caolan Mooney in the fourth quarter
Fremantle: Lachie Neale replaced by Jayden Pitt in the third quarter