Kick it to the S#!t House – Review

‘Kick it to the S#!T HOUSE’, compiled by Michael Winkler and prefaced by Dennis Cometti, is a book that is charming in its unabashed rudeness.

Boldly stating that it contains ‘Great Australian Sporting Quotes’, ‘Kick it’ is a veritable smorgasbord of compiled gems from some of the great national sporting personalities in living memory.

The collected works are sorted into categories – including ‘Tell it like it is’ and ‘Huh?’.

While ‘Kick It’ focusses mainly on the great words from football, cricket, tennis, golf and soccer identities; it is not limited to these. It also includes some gems from the worlds of boxing, racing, sailing and other sports Australians love.

Witty and more direct than a Ricky Ponting cover drive, ‘Kick it’ does justice to its cheeky title.

‘Tonight they’re like Matthew McConaughey in a singles bar, they can’t miss!’ – Dennis Commeti.

Winkler has obviously taken great pains in compiling the collection which, while relatively thick, is sized conveniently at about A5 so it doesn’t take up to much room on the bar or poker table.

The quotes aren’t for the kids, with the author not shying away from controversial topics such as Socceroo Ljubo Milicevic’s infamous quote about drug use in the oval balled codes and Ben Cousins’ reputation ruining drug habit.

Its certainly a diverse selection, and each little quote offers something different.

Favourite football coaches, such as Jack Dyer and Wayne Bennett, feature as do a collection of cricketing heroes from yesteryear with their notoriously dry wit.

‘Kick It’, while not a book you’d sit down and read cover-to-cover, is light enough to guarantee a few laughs at the next party you stumble into, two cartons in to a Boon-esque binge.

Rating – 3.5/5.

Unfamiliar Territory for Elimination Wary Cats

Geelong vs Fremantle

WHERE AND WHEN: MCG, Saturday September 8, 7.45pm
LAST TIME: Fremantle 16.9 (105) d Geelong 15.11 (101), round one, 2012, at Patersons Stadium

Reigning Premiers Geelong will kick off its sixth consecutive finals campaign at the MCG on Saturday Night when they face Ross Lyon’s defensive Dockers.

Coming from sixth this year, the Cats are in the unfamiliar territory of an elimination final after a superb five top four finishes.

They’ll be away from their home turf, with the currently re-developing Simonds Stadium being put on ice until next year.

The turf-disadvantage that Geelong faces at finals time will be a major motivational point for Lyon, having solidified his Freo side in a finals position after a superb finish to the year.

The Dockers missed out on the finals last year, but it all seems to be going right for them at the moment: Aaron Sandilands is back and in dominant form, and while they missed a potentially scinitillating Western Derby by leapfrogging North Melbourne, they face the reigning Premiers on neutral turf.

What Geelong Will Want to See:

The Cats have reinvented themselves this year under the tutelage of Chris Scott, with a host of younger bodies being introduced into the side to increase the longevity of some of the senior brigade.

With a long and arduous home and away season behind them, it will be up to the likes of Jordan Murdoch, Steve Motlop and Nathan Vardy to make up for the likely tired legs of Jimmy Bartel, Paul Chapman and James Podsiadly.

Despite Tom Hawkins missing out on the Coleman Medal to a rampant Jack Riewoldt last Sunday, he will relish re entering the stage where he made his name last year. Along with his captain, Joel Selwood, he’ll be crucial to kicking the Cats away against Fremantle.

Tom Lonergan and Harry Taylor will be required to be at their best to combat Matthew Pavlich and whoever Fremantle select as their second ruckman out of Jon Griffen and Zac Clarke.

This could be Matthew Scarlett’s last game in a stellar career, and the Cats will be looking to lift one final time to see him through.

What Fremantle Will Want to See:

Matthew Pavlich drew level with Hawkins in the goal kicking this season; also missing out thanks to Riewoldt’s last day splurge. The evergreen forward will have to be at his very best to help find the defensively-orientated Fremantle an avenue to goal.

At his feet, Hayden Ballantyne and Michael Walters will need to capitalise on the ground ball against a rather tall Cats defence.

After a spat with Scarlett earlier in the year, Ballantyne will be looking to revenge the humiliation inflicted with a big day out at the ‘G.

David Mundy, Michael Barlow, Nat Fyfe and Stephen Hill all form part of a varied and hyped Fremantle midfield. They’ll need to do what they do at a top level if the Dockers are any chance of causing an upset. Ryan Crowley was effective on Nathan Jones in last weeks match and will likely tag another Premier midfielder in Selwood.

Luke McPharlin is a huge loss down back after injuring his knee against Melbourne, so Zac Dawson, and whoever Ross Lyon throws his weight behind to replace their star centre half-back (be it Alex Silvagni or even the retiring Antoni Grover), will surely have a big job to do against Hawkins and Podsiadly.

The Fremantle press will have to be at its very best to lock down a fast-moving Cats midfield, and it will involve commitment from every Dockers play on the field.

My Prediction:

Geelong have done this before. September is as much a part of the annual working year as March is. Fremantle, on the other hand, are entering their fourth finals series in their short existance.

Ross Lyon coached St Kilda to five consecutive finals series, but guiding the Dockers through will be a whole new challenge. Chris Scott is a second year coach, but the cattle around him are seasoned and he’s held up four Premiership cups as a player/coach in a glittering career.

Geelong are a great side with some great players, but Fremantle have more than a bit of X factor about them. Having said that, the Cats should be simply too strong for a teething Freo and expect that to show for most of the match.

Geelong by 40.

Saints Spoil Ratten’s Farewell

CARLTON 4.5 7.7 10.15 12.19 (91)
ST KILDA 4.1 8.4 10.6 16.9 (105)

On a sunny Sunday in Melbourne, St Kilda have beaten the outgoing Brett Ratten’s Carlton by 15 points at Etihad Stadium.

With coaching candidate Mick Malthouse already commenting on what his potential Carlton side may look like, Brett Ratten was still charged the task of guiding the Blues in their last game of a disappointing 2012 home and away season.

While the Blues supporters were receptive and respectful of their former legend, the players were unable to topple the persistent St Kilda.

With their last win in the bag, St Kilda reached the 12 game winning mark, but have bizarrely found themselves 2 games off the Top 8.

The Blues started brightly – going into the first break up by 4 points in spite of a controversial Stephen Milne goal late in the quarter.

Chris’ Judd and Yarran then hamstrung the Blues in the second quarter after both going off with upper leg injuries.

Despite their best efforts, they lost their lead at half time: Going in down by 3 points an the evergreen St Kilda side who were led by Terry Milera and Jason Gram.

The lead swung again when the Blues went into the 3 quarter time rest with a 9 point lead, but the Saints sealed the game late thanks to an Ahmed Saad goal.

Brock McLean starred for Carlton with a career high 39 touches finishing off a huge second half of the year to the former Demon’s on-baller. Bryce Gibbs was next best with 26 for the Blues. Jarrad Waite, meanwhile, bagged another 5 goal haul in a good performance.

Jason Gram picked up 26 touches for the Saints, and David Armitage 25, with Milera booting 3 goals to end a good debut year in the AFL.

Overall, Scott Watters managed to stick to expectation in a good starting year with the Saints, while the outgoing Brett Ratten will no doubt regret a poor year at the Blues that started with so much expectation.

VOTES

3 – Jarrad Waite

2 – Brock McLean

1 – Terry Milera


GOALS

St Kilda: Milera 3, Gram 2, Wilkes 2, Steven 2, Armitage 2, Milne, Goddard, McEvoy, Stanley, Saad

Carlton: Waite 5, Bell, Betts, Duigan, Garlett, Mitchell, Robinson, McLean

BEST

St Kilda: Gram, Armitage, Ray, Goddard, Geary, Siposs, Steven
Carlton: McLean, Waite, Kreuzer, Gibbs, O’Keeffe, Robinson


INJURIES

St Kilda: Nil
Carlton: Yarran (hamstring), Judd (hamstring)

SUBSTITUTES

St Kilda: Tom Ledger replaced by Jack Newnes during the third quarter
Carlton: Chris Yarran replaced by David Ellard during the second quarter


Reports

Stephen Milne (St Kilda) and Andrew Walker (Carlton) reported for wrestling before the opening bounce


Umpires

Margetts, Jeffery, Bannister


Official crowd

31,393 at Etihad Stadium

Dees Fell Giants

GWS GIANTS 2.2 4.4 4.5 9.5 (59)
MELBOURNE 3.4 6.10 9.13 11.18 (84)

Melbourne has won its fourth game of the season, beating the GWS Giants by 25 points in a scrappy clash at Manuka Oval.

With allegations of tanking hanging over their heads, the Demons attempted some misplaced champagne football but never really looked in doubt on a cold Saturday in the country’s capital.

In a game where the highlights for spectators were few and far between, a couple of Melbourne players were looking to plead their case to Mark Neeld, with a cull to the playing list looking likely at the end of 2012.

Lynden Dunn was one; he salvaged 27 possessions and was typically aggressive – despite lacking the trademark blight on his upper lip. Neville Jetta, in contrast, managed 5 touches all game and was lucky to not be subbed off.

The game wasn’t off limits for the Giants throughout the contest in Luke Power’s 300th; despite James Sellar booting the first of the game and Jeremy Howe looking lively early, they went into the first bell behind by 9 points.

They were behind by 3 goals at half time, before the Dees kicked away, or rather attempted to, in the third term.

The strong Canberra winds were a problem for Melbourne as they tried to convert; it snowed in the capital on Friday and it peaked at 5 degrees during the game, despite the sun emerging at the beginning.

Jeremy Howe missed 3 kickable goals, but also put 3 through, while the retiring dead-eye dick Brad Green walked away with 1 goal 3 and a petty 6 disposals.

Melbourne went into the break with a 38 point lead, but they couldn’t kick on and a few junktime goals from the Giants saw them win by an unimpressive 25 points.

Toby Greene was sensational for GWS. 38 touches, 2 goals and 4 tackles were added to the tally of the highest polling first year player since the introduction of Champion Data. One feels a sense of pride writing about him in his first year, with the future star capable of absolutely anything wherever he ends up playing the bulk of his career.

Power himself managed 25 touches, as did Taylor Adams; while Jon Giles accumulated 21 touches despite breaking even in the hit outs with Jake Spencer.

Meanwhle, for the Dees, Sellar kicked his second bag of two in a fortnight with Jared Rivers and captain Jack Trengove both managing two.

Trengove getting his first after a high fend off and than a 50 metre penalty against Tom Scully, who himself only managed 16 touches in another frustrating game.

Jack Watts got 15 touches off half back on his return after 5 weeks out with an ankle injury; subbed on for Tom Couch midway through the third quarter.

The other boom recruit for GWS, Izzy Folau, endured yet another shocking day at the office. Three touches and one kick all that he could manage.

When the final siren rang, the Demons were given a talking to in the rooms behind closed doors by their coach before being allowed to sing the song on the back of a less than convincing win.

GWS, meanwhile, now look nailed on to receive the first pick of the NAB AFL Draft. Midfielder Lachie Whitfield and ruckman Brodie Grundy the likely culprits to be considered.

VOTES:

3 go to Toby Greene who racked it up all day.

2 go to Lynden Dunn who was effective and intense

1 goes to Jeremy Howe, who was innaccurate, but booted 3.

GOALS
GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY: Greene (2), Giles, Power, Adams, Phillips, McDonald, Smith, Davis
MELBOURNE: Howe (3), Sellar (2), Trengove (2), Rivers (2), Green, Grimes

INJURIES
Melbourne: TBC
Greater Western Sydney: TBC

SUBSTITUTES
Melbourne: Jack Watts replaced Tom Couch in the third quarter
Greater Western Sydney: Steve Clifton replaced Will Hoskin-Elliott at three quarter-time

Reports: TBC

Umpires: Ryan, Armstrong, Harris

Official crowd: 7,561 at Manuka Oval

Shinboner Spirit Shines

Chris Scott in On the Couch

ESSENDON 5.2 8.6 9.10 11.10 (76)
NORTH MELBOURNE 6.2 8.4 11.7 15.10 (100)

In a thrilling war of attrition at the MCG, Brad Scott’s North Melbourne have beaten Essendon by 24 points.

Despite losing two key players before quarter time, the Roos rallied to down the Dons and all but confirm their first final series since the Preliminary appearance in 2007.

The much maligned Bomber’s, meanwhile, look a chance to miss the final 8 after winning 8 of their first 9 games this season. Its all come apart for the Bombers, and their injury-riddled midfield couldn’t even handle a North team playing the majority of the game with 19 and the sub.

Even in the face of Leigh Adams once again dislocating a shoulder, and Daniel Wells pulling up lame after a calf knock, North started brightly to lead Essendon by a goal at quarter time.

Along with the two credited injuries, they also lost Lachie Hansen in the first to what was feared to be concussion. The unlucky Roo played on to kick three goals, including the sealer, but the lead was created without him.

The Bombers rallied in the second term, led as usual by the excellent Jobe Watson, to regain a 2-point lead at half time.

With the game in the grasp of Essendon, it took some famous Shinboner spirit for the new-look attacking North side to pounce on any and every mistake their opponents made and take the game to the Bombers.

Brent Harvey proved his longevity, as if he needed to, by booting three goals within two minutes to galvanize his side and turn a 4 point negative deficit into fourteen points clear.

From there, it took the work of Watson, Tom Bellchambers whose physicality troubled Todd Goldstein, the dangerous Michael Hurley and the ever reliable Dustin Fletcher to pick up the slack from some first year players whose commitment must surely be questioned by James Hird and his million dollar coaching brigade.

North led by only 9 points at three quarter time, and their gritty display was an indictment on an Essendon side who rarely managed to combine hardness and skill in a singular piece of play against their depleted opponents.

The 24-point win was also unbelievable in itself with Drew Petrie, a favourite for the Coleman Medal, failing to add a single goal to his tally. Instead, the ever improving Robbie Tarrant and the on song Hansen added 3 each – a tally sure to puzzle sides come September with how to organize their defence.

In the end, Hird and Watson were defiant in defeat – daring their side to realise their perilous ladder position. Scott, on the other hand, was seen clasping the hands of each of his coaching staff before the final siren with the look of better things to come inscribed all over his face.

VOTES:

3 – Sam Wright

2 – Lachie Hansen

1 – Jobe Watson

GOALS
Essendon: Davey 3, Hurley 3, Crameri, Lovett-Murray, Lonergan, Melksham, Watson
North Melbourne: Harvey 3, Hansen 3, Tarrant 3, Garlett 2, Gibson 2, Wells, Wright

BEST
Essendon: Watson, Fletcher, Bellchambers, Colyer, Davey, Hurley,
North Melbourne: Harvey, Wright, McMahon, Swallow, Grima, Gibson, Goldstein, Anthony

INJURIES
Essendon: Nil
North Melbourne: Leigh Adams (left shoulder), Daniel Wells (calf), Nathan Grima (hamstring tendonitis)

SUBSTITUTES
Essendon: Scott Gumbleton replaced by Angus Monfries in the third quarter
North Melbourne: Leigh Adams (left shoulder) replaced by Matt Campbell in the first quarter

Reports: Nil

Umpires: Donlon, Meredith, McInerney

Official crowd: 42,674 at Etihad Stadium

And check out…

The camera catches Chris Scott asking Gerard Healy for an apology during a cut to commercial break:

Cats reign supreme

HAWTHORN 2.0  7.6  11.8  17.14 (116)
GEELONG  9.3  10.5  14.9  18.10 (118)

In yet another classic game of football between the two sides, Tom Hawkins of Geelong booted a goal after the final bell to give his side a three-point win over modern rivals Hawthorn.

Hawkins’ goal meant the Cats extended their winning streak over Hawthorn to nine in a row, continuing the infamous “Kennett Curse” of 2008.

The Cats had the best of it early, gaining an incredible nine -goal lead in the first quarter against a highly-fancied and blatantly shell-shocked Hawthorn.

The Hawks, without Lance Franklin, had no answer to Geelong’s early dominance as the Cats of old came out to purr one again.

Paul Chapman was monumental in front of goal with three big ones in the first, while the midfield contributed a sizeable amount between them.

Returning from their date with what would have been a indescribably distressed Alistair Clarkson at quarter-time, the Hawks looked rejuvenated in the second quarter and pegged the game back to 17 points at half-time.

Despite the mini-resurgence, everything Hawthorn had been praised for in their recent run seemed absent in their performance.

Jarryd Roughead and David Hale looked lost in the ruck, Ryan Schoenmakers lost all confidence and the midfield was steam-rolled by the mixture of youth and experience in the Geelong core.

Still, despite the loss of the underdone Luke Hodge, Hawthorn continued to re-group amid worries that Geelong had run their race in a premature fashion akin to a late night infomercial.

The Hawks hit the front for the first time midway through the final term and held a 10-point lead before a clever Bill Smedts handball led to a Hawkins snap.

Then came the defining moments; Paul Puopulo tried to soccer the ball through the goals but only managed to send it across to a Geelong player deep in defence with 30 seconds on the clock.

Cyril Rioli then tackled Smedts but the umpire called play on despite an apparently illegal ball release.

The ball found its way to Joel Selwood with seconds to go in the middle, who promptly delivered the ball to the hulking Hawkins; 55 metres from goal.

Steadying himself, Hawkins was unfazed by the siren and released a monster punt that split the big sticks.

The Hawks players didn’t utter a noise whilst watching the celebrations and cooling down in the rooms afterwards.

And in yet another monster battle between Hawthorn and Geelong, the Cats proved their threat and find themselves just four points off their rivals in the Top 4.

GOALS
Hawthorn: Gunston 4, Breust 2, Burgoyne 2, Puopolo 2, Rioli 2, Hale, Lewis, Roughead, Sewell, Whitecross
Geelong: Hawkins 6, Chapman 4, Duncan 2, Johnson 2, Christensen, Mackie, Walker, Podsiadly

INJURIES
Hawthorn: Bailey (illness) replaced in the selected side by Savage
Geelong: Hunt (quad)

SUBSTITUTES
Hawthorn: Shane Savage replaced Luke Hodge at three-quarter time
Geelong: Steven Motlop replaced Josh Hunt (quad) during the third quarter

Reports: Nil

Umpires: McBurney, Rosebury, Nicholls

Official crowd: 65,287 at the MCG

Fremantle Fail to Capitalise

Go Fremantle – Credit: flickr.com/michaelspencer

PORT ADELAIDE 1.2 1.3 2.7 6.12 (48)
FREMANTLE 5.2 6.7 9.9 11.9 (75)

In front of a meagre crowd, just short of 15,000; Fremantle has kept its increasingly slim finals hopes alive by making easy work of Port Adelaide at AAMI Stadium.

An early burst of goals by Ross Lyon’s perennial underachievers was the defining factor in the match with Port, having come back from a win against Melbourne in Darwin, looking slow from the start.

Nathan Fyfe starred on his return to the Dockers side; the highly fancied flanker found the ball 26 times and booted a goal, proving his fitness after that shoulder injury that he sustained earlier in the year.

In a trend for the round, Port Adelaide found themselves with no more than a goal and a few points to their name at the first break, similar to Melbourne and Essendon in the days prior.

In an even worse turn, they booted just one point in the second quarter to finish the half on 1 goal 3 and down by 34 points to their wasteful opponents.

The absences of Jay Schulz, Robbie Grey and John Butcher were more apparent than ever, with the midfield not having the opportunity to find a target with the limited inside 50 chances they had.

Fremantle, led by their consistently excellent captain Matthew Pavlich, found themselves up by 44 points at the main break; before Port fought back to keep it to a respectable 27 point margin.

Fremantle’s inability to hit the scoreboard would have been a source of frustration to Lyon, with his side sitting 9th on the ladder but suffering with a percentage of just over 106%.

Juxtaposed with North Melbourne’s 110% in 8th place, and St Kilda’s 121% in 10th – the Dockers will be wondering why Pavlich missed 3 of his 5 set shots and Michael Barlow failed to hit the scoreboard in a major way from the midfield in scoring 0.2.

Matthew Primus, meanwhile, finds himself in yet another spot of bother. With a GWS game to save face next week, the coach will need to oversee a victory over a side whose 78 point loss to Melbourne 6 weeks ago has led to a 100+ point average losing margin since.

If he manages to lose to the Giants, he’d be rightly nervous about his status as coach – but that fantasy would take the greatest achievement in footy chokelore to become a reality.

Freo, meanwhile, will host West Coast at Patterson’s Stadium on Saturday in what is sure to be a red hot Derby. With the Dockers looking to leapfrog North into 8th and the Eagles hoping to skip above the Crows into 4th, we can expect an even more passionate game than usual.

VOTES

3 – Kane Cornes continued an unusual rich vein of form by gathering 31 touches and a goal.
2 – Nathan Fyfe was very good on return with 26 touches and a goal.
1 – Michael Barlow couldn’t impact on the scoreboard, but his 7 tackles and 24 disposals were encouraging.

GOALS

Port Adelaide: Brett Ebert 2, Stewart, Boak, Westhoff, Cornes
Fremantle: Mayne 2, Pearce 2, Pavlich 2, Fyfe, Mundy, Mzungu, Sutcliffe, Walters

INJURIES

Port Adelaide: Nil
Fremantle: Nil

SUBS

Port Adelaide: Aaron Young replaced Jackson Trengove in the fourth quarter
Fremantle: Cameron Sutcliffe replaced Michael Walters in the fourth quarter


Reports

Port Adelaide: Nil
Fremantle: Nil

Umpires: Foot, Ryan, Mollison

Official crowd: 14,583 at AAMI Stadium

Red-Hot Suns Record First Win

RICHMOND 2.2 4.3 10.7 13.10 (88)
GOLD COAST 4.2 7.9 9.9 13.12 (90)

Karmichael Hunt makes his way to the mark.
Round 16, 2012 – Karmichael Hunt takes stock. Fox Footy

The Gold Coast Suns have won their first game of the year in sensational circumstances at Cazaly Stadium on a warm night in Cairns.

Richmond, who led by 10 points with less than 30 seconds left in the match, were outdone by a fantastic Jarrod Harbrow running goal and a quite unbelievable after-the-siren conversion from Rugby League convert Karmichael Hunt.

In a game that is sure to be remembered for a long time, it was Hunt’s 30-metre kick that went sailing through the big sticks to the delight of the Queensland crowd after Brandon Matera found his famous teammate with a desperate snap with just a second on the clock.

Hunt’s goal condemned Richmond to their second loss to the Gold Coast in as many years and to a certain frosty reception from the loyal Tiger Army upon their return to Melbourne.

The game started in spectacular fashion from Gold Coast, with the struggling and winless Suns getting off to a multiple goal lead in the second quarter and leading by four goals at halftime.

With the Gold Coast in front at quarter time for the sixth time, it all seemed to be going downhill as a Trent Cotchin and Brett Deledio inspired outfit fired to lead the Tigers to a slim three quarter time buffer.

With the Suns out on their feet in the last quarter and former Hawk Campbell Brown dropping a number of golden opportunities to get his adopted side back into the match – it took an unlucky but careless 50-metre free kick against Addam Maric for kicking the ball away after a whistle to help the Gold Coast swing the momentum their way in the final minutes.

In-demand young midfielder Josh Caddy burst through the middle of the field to give the Suns their first, before former-Bulldog Jarrod Harbrow did the same moments later to reduce the margin to under a goal.

Substitute Aaron Hall played a major part in both goals but when Shaun Grigg cleared from the bounce with 20 seconds to go – all seemed lost.

Dion Prestia’s desperate smother changed that and with 15 seconds left, Trent McKenzie delivered a trademark barrel, which was to be picked up on the run by Matera and blindly sent the way of Hunt.

Immediately surrounded by star teammates Gary Ablett and Harley Bennell, Hunt sucked in a breath and converted from 30 metres out at a slight angle.

It was a fairytale ending, with the celebratory Suns scrub sure to be a timeless image in the future for the club.

Although the beloved, revered and presumably underpaid AFL CEO Andrew Demetriou had somehow found himself on a six-week hiatus during the season – he was said to be delighted at the news.

VOTES:

3 – Trent Cotchin was unbelievable for the Tigers with 38 possessions and 4-tackle game; surely the next Richmond captain after Chris Newman retires.
2 – Gary Ablett was standard, with a casual 33 disposal and 5 tackle game , topped off with 1 goal 1.
1 – Jack Riewoldt booted 5 in a losing side, though his typical theatrics overshadowed the dominant performance.

GOALS
Richmond: Riewoldt 5, Nahas 4, McGuane 2, Graham, Maric.
Gold Coast: J Hall 2, Matera 2, Hunt 2, Ablett, Benell, Hunt, A Hall, Brown, Caddy, Swallow.

INJURIES
Richmond: Ivan Maric (groin) replaced in the selected side by Angus Graham, Ben Griffiths (calf) replaced in selected side by Jeromey Webberley, Jake Batchelor (leg), Chris Newman (head)
Gold Coast: Nil

SUBSTITUTES
Richmond: Brett O’Hanlon replaced Jeromey Webberley in the second quarter
Gold Coast: Aaron Hall replaced Josh Hall in the third quarter

Reports: Nil

Official crowd: 10,961 at Cazaly’s Stadium

Crows Continue, Power Trip

PORT ADELAIDE 2.1 4.6 7.8 8.10 (58)
ADELAIDE 5.2 9.6 13.8 17.14 (116)

Adelaide have demolished Port in the annual Showdown, beating their fierce rivals by 51 points.

While Port were competitive early, the Crows ran away with the result, despite the suspension of Taylor Walker for a hit on Richmond’s Steve Morris.

The injury-ravaged Power were no match for the revived Crows, who ended up beating them by double their score.

Ruckman Sam Jacobs’ gargantuan day at the office was undoubtedly the highlight of the match – his record-breaking 61 hit outs (beating this seasons record by 6 and being the best registered since Champion Data started recording) even out-starring Ricky Henderson’s heroic 6 goal performance.

With Shaun McKernan and Kurt Tippett both eliminated from the game early, it took Henderson’s unlikely break-out performance to drive the Crows to outscore their opposition.

While Matt Lobbe obviously had a day to forget at AAMI, winning just 12 hit outs, Paul Stewart was the Power’s version of an unlikely hero – booting a superb four goals and filling in admirably for the injured Jay Schulz.

Despite Port hanging in for the first portion of the game, the result was never in doubt past the first half of the first quarter.

A shoot out between Henderson and Stewart, John Butcher and Brad Ebert ensured that Port saw a glimmer of hope in the third after being down by 5 goals at half time, but the rampant Crows barely had to light the after-burners as they blew Port away to lead by 6 goals at quarter time and over 9 when the final siren rang.

Scott Thompson continued a remarkable season by accumulating 32 disposals, while Travis Boak – whose future remains uncertain with interest coming from, among others, Geelong and Melbourne – racked up 25 touches and a goal.

Brodie Martin snagged three majors for Adelaide, while Tim McIntyre joined esteemed ranks by scoring his first of two goals with his first kick in AFL football.

Nathan van Berlo was once again impressive with 26 touches, while Matthew Wright led the way for Adelaide with 8 tackles and Michael Doughty 6.

After the game, Crows coach Brenton Sanderson focused his contention on the farcical AFL video review system, which also got a pounding from Eddie McGuire during the Melbourne and Richmond game earlier in the afternoon, expressing his frustration at the tediousness of the procedure.

Matthew Primus, meanwhile, found himself and his team under the blowtorch once again, calling the performance unacceptable. Assuming a brave face afterwards, he did claim that he believed that the club was headed in the right direction and was not worried about what the opportunistic football media would say in the foreseeable future.

With the Power failing to record win number 5 for 2012, it was the Adelaide Crows who continued their fantastic season and now find themselves equal at the top of the ladder with Collingwood, West Coast and Sydney.

GOALS
Port Adelaide: Stewart 4, Wingard, Boak, Brett Ebert, Butcher
Adelaide: Henderson 6, Martin 3, McIntyre 2, Dangerfield, Douglas, Knights, Porplyzia, Sloane, Tippett

INJURIES
Port Adelaide: David Rodan (hamstring) replaced in selected side by Jackson Trengove
Adelaide: McKernan (head knock), Tippett (head knock)

SUBSTITUTES
Port Adelaide: Ben Jacobs replaced Chad Wingard in the third quarter
Adelaide: Brodie Martin replaced Shaun McKernan (head knock) in the second quarter

Reports: Nil

Umpires: Margetts, Dalgleish, Bannister

Official crowd: 34,829 at AAMI Stadium

Crows Overrun Tigers

ADELAIDE        3.0    8.1    11.2     17.4 (106)
RICHMOND      8.3    10.4    11.7   13.9  (87)

In a thrilling, see-sawing match, Adelaide have come from behind at AAMI stadium to fell the Richmond Tigers.

In front of a crowd of 33,780, the Crows were looking to bounce back from last week’s shock 32-point loss to North Melbourne at Etihad.

Richmond, meanwhile, were coming off a bye, and before that a close win over the amazingly accurate Greater Western Sydney. Their push for a top eight spot was hanging by a thread, and a shock win over Adelaide would have done wonders for their their confidence going into the final quarter of the season.

Being in front by 33 points at quarter time, it was all going to plan for Richmond. They were tackling harder, running faster and kicking straighter – you had to wonder whether the Crows had run out of steam after their rip-roaring start.

A spirited comeback, however, saw Adelaide and their coach, Brenton Sanderson, grinning when the final bell rang.

Taylor Walker lead the comeback as a brilliant focal point up forward, they kicked five goals to Richmond’s two in the second quarter, and it was clear to all that the Tigers had a fight on their hands.

Jason Porplyzia played arguably his best game for the season

The Crows’ momentum continued in the third, as they closed the margin to five points, both sides were tiring and it was clearly going to turn into a battle of attrition in the final stanza.

He’s not a popular figure at Footy Park but Neil Craig’s intensive fitness regime is paying dividends this season, with Sanderson’s side finding themselves able to turn over deficits through consistent midfield running.

The most fascinating aspect of the match may have been the ruck duel between the two in-form big-men of the competition.

Ivan Maric left Adelaide last season due to lack of opportunity and now finds himself a cult figure down at Richmond. The former Carlton ruck Sam Jacobs, who one senses would be doing wonders at the collapsing Blues at the minute, was the man who took Maric’s spot at Adelaide and looks a real bargain.

Maric ended up beating Jacobs narrowly in the hit-outs, 39-32, with Kurt Tippett and Brad Miller providing relief.

Jake King went off early with a serious looking knee problem to add to Richmond’s woes, while Nathan van Berlo was subbed at half time for Adelaide.

Scott Thompson starred for Adelaide with 32 touches, while Shane Tuck continued to make up for lost time with an impressive 31 disposals.

Dustin Martin was good through the midfield for Richmond, booting three goals, but it was Taylor Walker who proved the game-changer; kicking five to get his side over the line.

Unfortunately for Walker, a dangerous spear-like tackle on Steve Morris late in the game may see him heavily reprimanded – or let off completely judging by the AFL Match Review Panel’s bizarre interpretation of consistency. Jack Riewoldt and Kurt Tippett also managed three each.

In the end, Adelaide just had too much polish for a steadily improving Richmond side.

Votes:
3-Dustin Martin (Richmond) continues to show his prowess, week by week, with his daring runs and accurate kicking. His 23 touches and three goals kept the Tigers in the game.

2-For what Taylor Walker (Adelaide) lacks in intelligence, he makes up for in sheer footballing brilliance and consistency. Plenty of X-Factor in a five-goal performance, though tackling was a low point. Should nickname him Mark Robinson (sorry Robbo, shameless plug).

1-Ivan Maric  (Richmond) had 39 impressive hit-outs against opponent Sam Jacobs in an intriguing ruck contest. Who was better bang for their buck?

GOALS
Adelaide:
 Walker 5, Tippett 3, Douglas 2, Knights 2, Porplyzia, 2, Sloane, Callinan, Mackay
Richmond: Riewoldt 3, Martin 3, Edwards 2, Nahas, Cotchin, Deledio, Connors, Grigg

INJURIES
Adelaide:
 Nathan van Berlo
Richmond: Jake King (knee)

SUBSTITUTIONS
Adelaide:
 Brodie Martin replaced Nathan van Berlo at half-time
Richmond: Daniel Connors replaced Jake King at half-time

REPORTS
Adelaide:
 Nil
Richmond: Nil

Umpires: Ryan, Nicholls, McInerney

Official crowd: 33,780 at AAMI Stadium