Round 13 AFL Review

Friday, August 21
Gold Coast Suns 4.3.27 defeated by Carlton 7.18.60
On Friday night at TIO Stadium, we had the first game of Sir Doug Nicholls round taking place between the Suns and Blues. As the half-time siren sounded to send the players off for the long break, the Blues should have had the game 100% sown up! They had outscored the Suns five goals, seven points to two goals, for a huge ten scoring shots advantage. This theme of absolute game dominance, but wasteful finishing, by Carlton, would continue until the final siren. Carlton's Marc Murphy was probably the most influential player on the ground, ending with 28 Disposals that included 11 score involvements; hopefully they weren't all points...

Saturday, August 22
Western Bulldogs 12.8.80 defeated Melbourne 7.10.52

At Metricon Stadium the Western Bulldogs have turned around a 7-point half time deficit into a quality 28-point win on the back of a 6-goal third-quarter effort on Saturday afternoon. With Melbourne having pulled in front in the lead-up to the half time break, the Bulldogs coach made some positional shuffles (Bruce going into the ruck while ruckman English went forward) that helped his team starting winning the ball in the middle, and the rest is history! After kicking a bag last round, the Bulldog's Aaron Naughton was well held by Steven May. The Demon's backman keep the dangerous Naughton to zero goals from his 10 Disposals and 4 Marks.

Port Adelaide 9.14.68 defeated Hawthorn 9.4.58
While the end result of a 10-point win means a close game was played out at Adelaide Oval on Saturday afternoon, it was only close due to the Power players wasting many chances to kick their team to a comfortable lead; in the third quarter, Port Adelaide kicked five points to go with a single goal. Having 63 more disposals than the Hawks is a sign of the endeavour of the Power in this match. On a side note... It is crazy to think that Hawthorn did not get a single free-kick for the entire second half of a footy match! Has that ever happened before? The free-kick counted ended up 20-8, against the Hawks.

Essendon 10.1.61 defeated by Richmond 10.13.73
It was great to see a second match taking place in front of the excited Darwin footy fans on Saturday night, when the Bombers took on the Tigers at TIO Stadium. In another match where the winning team got to sing their song on the back of the points they kicked, the Tigers have been able to hold off a determined Essendon team in the final quarter, outscoring the Bombers by a single goal, as they won their second in a row. The Tigers now go on to play the Eagles, where the Bombers will front up against the Hawks. It was great to see Irvin Mosquito's beaming smile get to light up the place after he kicked two of his team’s goals.

Fremantle 7.8.50 defeated Sydney Swans 2.7.19
After their big win over the Giants last round, the Swans have been brought back to earth, with a resounding thud, by the Dockers on Saturday night. In a scoreline reminiscent of a Little League side, the Sydney siders managed to kick just two goals for the match. Two goals... The Dockers have been actively working on implementing a new defensive system this year, and it certainly looked pretty good in this match. Having said that, they were coming up against one of the weaker, most injury-depleted, teams in the competition this season, so they will need to keep things in perspective against GWS Giants next round.

Sunday, August 23
Adelaide Crows 5.7.37 defeated by Geelong Cats 9.11.65

For the second time that I can think of this season, the Geelong Cats have left their run until the final quarter to cement their 28-point win over the Adelaide Crows on Sunday afternoon. With the Crows coming out hot for this match, they took the advantage through the middle of the ground, and matched the Cats for forward entries, Geelong had to use their experience to get the game back on their terms. The Cats slowed the game down, working the ball through many hands. This meant Adelaide needed to do a lot of chasing which, in the end, helped the Cats to run out with another win under their belts.

Brisbane Lions 6.14.50 defeated St Kilda 7.6.48
In another example of their improvement in Season 2020, the Saints have taken it right up to the Lions in their contest at the Gabba, on Sunday afternoon. Having built up a slim lead heading late into the third, the Lions had to withstand a concerted push by the Saints to get that early lead back. While it certainly looked like the ball spent a lot of time in Brisbane's back-half, their defenders did well to concede just the single goal in the last quarter. In an entertaining game, the Lions have made it three in a row as they go on to face Collingwood. The Saints should undoubtedly keep the belief alive as they come up against Melbourne next.

West Coast Eagles 9.7.61 defeated GWS Giants 7.7.49
As they prepare to head back to the QLD hub for their next game, the Eagles have made it eight wins in a row after beating the GWS Giants on Sunday night. While it was West Coast who got off to a great start, largely thanks to the centre work of Nic Natainui, the Giants certainly didn't give up, outscoring their opposition, seven goals to five, across the last three quarters. While Nic Nat would have been the Eagle's best in this match, GWS debutant, Jake Riccardi made quite an impression in his first game, certainly ending up the top of the Giant's best players.

Monday, August 24
Collingwood 10.5.65 defeated North Melbourne 5.5.35

After a rather uninspiring first half from both teams, the Collingwood Magpies have put the foot down in the third quarter, to get an important win over the Kangaroos at the Gabba on Monday night. As a team that has struggled to kick goals in the absence of DeGoey, the Magpies worked the ball around to end the match with nine separate goalkickers, with Trey Ruscoe being the only player on the ground to kick multiple goals. While North's Jed Anderson and Shaun Higgins played good games for the Roos, it was the Magpies Scott Pendlebury who really put on a show in the second half where at times, he proved to be untouchable and unstoppable.

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