The Western Bulldogs have clinched an enormous win on the road, beating Port Adelaide at Adelaide Oval, while defending premiers Richmond have downed GWS during a thriller at Docklands to cap an enormous day in AFL.
AFL – Week 23
Game: Western Bulldogs vs Port Adelaide
Date: Thursday, August 19
Time: 3:50 PM
Studium: Marvel Stadium
The Bulldogs and Power swapped six goal quarters within the half , then the visitors extended their lead within the third term before holding on to win by 19 points.
The Tigers were on the rear foot for much of the night against the Giants, with Jesse Hogan booting four goals for GWS.
But Dustin Martin returned to his best, kicking four of his own as his side edged out the Giants by four points.
Earlier, the Swans beat Collingwood by 30 points, North Melbourne got off the mark with a seven-point convert Hawthorn, and Brisbane thrashed Gold Coast by 73 points at Carrara.
More to return .
Port Adelaide vs Western Bulldogs
Another Marcus Bontempelli masterclass has inspired the Western Bulldogs to a spirited 19-point victory against fellow flag fancies Port Adelaide.
Bontempelli’s 26 disposals featured two goals and 7 inside-50s in his side’s 15.6 (96) to 12.5 (77) triumph in Saturday night’s high-class affair at Adelaide Oval.
The skipper’s tenacious teammate Tom Liberatore was also superb, with 27 touches and a dozen clearances because the Bulldogs took top spot on the ladder.
Melbourne can regain top-billing with a convert Carlton on Sunday while Port slip from third to fifth after their third loss of the season.
The Power, aside from a purple patch within the second quarter, were overwhelmed by the slick Dogs who bank an eighth win from nine starts.
The Doggies’ renowned midfield was in top form: Bontempelli, Liberatore, Jack Macrae (32 disposals), Adam Treloar (26), Bailey Dale (23), and Bailey Smith (25) were prolific ball-winners.
Forward Aaron Naughton booted four goals and took a trademark hanger of a mark, the lively Cody Weightman scored three, and Jason Johannisen and Josh Bruce kicked two apiece.
Port on-ballers Ollie Wines (32 disposals) and Travis Boak (30 possessions), and defender Darcy Byrne-Jones (24 touches) were gallant, while Mitch Georgiades, Charlie Dixon and Orazio Fantasia kicked two majors each.
The Dogs blitzed Port early, booting five consecutive goals during a stunning 16-minute burst within the first term orchestrated by the brilliance of Bontempelli and Liberatore’s grunt round the packs.
The visitors led 6.2 to 2.1 at quarter-time despite losing defender Easton Wood to a left leg injury.
But the tide turned Port’s way in remarkable fashion within the second stanza because the home side scored five unanswered goals from five inside-50s during a idle nine explosive minutes.
The sudden surge gave Port the lead and was only halted when Bontempelli scored his second major from a dubious in-the-back place kick .
Port defender Tom Clurey was substituted out with a jaw injury following an accidental clash of heads because the Bulldogs took a one-point halftime lead courtesy of a late Johannisen goal.
The Dogs then gained an important edge up the third term, booting four goals to at least one with Bontempelli and Liberatore again prominent.
Two of the visitor’s goals came from Naughton: one after his head was driven into the bottom by a Tom Jonas tackle; the opposite after he climbed onto Jonas’ shoulders for a spectacular high mark.
The Bulldogs held a 21-point buffer at three-quarter time but, within the last term, Port rallied to twice sneak within eight points.
But the Bulldogs’ Weightman sealed the win: with but four minutes remaining, he crumbed a pack within the goal-square and snapped over his head, together with his teammate Naughton soon adding another.
Richmond vs GWS
AFL superstar Dustin Martin clenches his fist as he runs away after kicking a goal.
Dustin Martin led Richmond to an exciting convert GWS, kicking four goals at Docklands. (AAP: Rob Prezioso)
Dustin Martin has produced his best performance of the season to inspire Richmond to an exciting four-point convert Greater Western Sydney.
The Tigers trailed by 28 points midway through the third quarter but stormed home to register a crucial 13.9 (87) to 12.11 (83) victory on Saturday night.
Only 18,798 fans were available at Docklands after Richmond chief executive Brendon Gale vented his frustration about the club being forced to play a game faraway from the MCG.
But the faithful who turned up were rewarded with a classic encounter as Martin was awarded a controversial late goal on review and Daniel Rioli kicked what proved to be the winning goal every week after he was involved during a nightclub scuffle.
Rioli had just four kicks for the night but pounced on a loose ball and snapped truly within the dying stages.
Minutes earlier, Martin was judged to possess got his toe to the ball on the line and cannoned into the goal umpire, who had to get replaced due to a sore shoulder.
Tim Taranto had the prospect to grab a dramatic victory for the Giants but his dribble kick from close range was blocked by a diving Dylan Grimes on the line .
Martin finished with four goals from 28 disposals as a number of unheralded teammates stepped up within the midfield.
Liam Baker, Riley Collier-Dawkins and Jack Graham were important contributors as regular defender Nick Vlastuin helped plug a hole in an injury-hit midfield and Toby Nankervis led the way within the ruck.
GWS recruit Jesse Hogan kicked four goals— all of them within the second quarter — as Jacob Hopper, Josh Kelly, Callan Ward and Tom Green helped the Giants get on top within the middle early.
Inexperienced Giants defenders Sam Taylor and Jack Buckley kept Tom Lynch and Jack Riewoldt quiet for many of the night.
Hogan kicked three goals during a five-minute burst early within the second term to fireside the Giants to a 27-point lead before half-time and was involved during a scuffle with Nathan Broad behind play that earned him the ire of Tigers fans.
Martin took it upon himself to tug Richmond back to it and kicked subsequent two goals before Hogan took another strong mark and booted his fourth major from the goal square after a 50m penalty against Nankervis.
Again it had been Martin who sparked a fightback late within the third quarter as he kicked the primary of 4 quick goals that cut the margin back to 3 points at the ultimate change.
In the end it had been the Tigers’ famed pressure and surge game that got them over the road during a frantic finish.
Richmond face another tough task once they combat Brisbane at the Gabba on Friday night, while GWS host West Coast on Sunday.
Lions roar in Q-Clash rout of Suns
A Brisbane Lions forward accepts congratulations from teammates after a goal.
The Brisbane Lions dominated the Q-Clash, thumping the Gold Coast Suns at Carrara by 73 points. (AAP: Dave Hunt)
Brisbane Lions have destroyed Queensland rivals Gold Coast to stay their top-four charge on target after a 73-point convert the Suns.
The Lions extended their winning run to 5 matches during a one-sided match at Carrara, charging to a 19.10 (124) to 7.9 (51) victory.
Big forward Daniel McStay kicked a career-best equalling four goals for the visitors, with Charlie Cameron learning three majors.