Part One?!? Yes, part one. This is because it’s the Queen’s Birthday this weekend and Melbourne v Collingwood won’t start until 10:20 PM Pacific on Sunday night and I have to open up a site for a contractor at 6:30 AM Monday morning and there’s no way in hell I’m finishing the AFL Beat in time.
So, today you get the bulk of the highlights and game recaps while tomorrow you will get the standings, the Balls Graph, and the Footy Tipping Contest results.
Make sense? Ok, let’s begin!
Welcome to Balls of Steel’s AFL Beat!
The Round started late on Thursday night/early on Friday morning with Richmond visiting Port Adelaide WITHOUT Dusty Martin. Yes, he was a late exit during the week as the club decided to rest him and he went to New Zealand to visit his exiled father. The question was not whether this would affect the Tigers, but how much. It turns out it affected them a lot.
Although the Tigers started off the game well, the Power turned in a tremendous second quarter scoring seven goals and essentially deciding the game. The final margin was 14, but it was a well-earned Power win. Highlights:
I was eagerly awaiting and somewhat dreading the Geelong-North clash on proper Friday night. I knew it was going to be tough and indeed, the game was close throughout with Geelong holding onto a steadily-built lead until the third quarter when the Roos got it to within 18 points. In fact, at one point early in the fourth, the Roos were within 10, but a late rally by the Cats made the final margin a strong
The GWS Giants got a much-needed win last week and needed another one to continue the momentum and get themselves back in the finals conversation. The Gold Coast Suns were the perfect opponent. I really hope BFC got a chance to see this one in between airport trips. The 108 point final margin constitutes the largest winning margin in GWS history. Here are the highlights:
In the Friday nightcap, the Sydney Swans made short work of the woeful St. Kilda Saints who, like the Suns, might as well start making vacation plans. It wasn’t as bad as the GWS-Gold Coast margin, but it wasn’t good either. The final score was 126-55 and here are the highlights:
North American Saturday night brought only two games with the first having the Essendon Bombers visiting the Brisbane Lions. The Lions continued their streak of playing well yet losing by double digits. I’m not sure how sustainable that is… Here are the highlights:
In the second and last game, the Fremantle Dockers hosted the Adelaide Crows at the new Optus Stadium which has, in a short time, become as much of a home field advantage as the old stadium.
So, then, if I told you that the Dockers rode that home support to an upset victory over the Crows, would you be surprised? It’s true! Here are the highlights:
The remaining match in the Round pits the Melbourne Demons against the Collingwood Magpies. Depending on the result of the match, the ladder positions WILL be affected, so I can’t even give you a preliminary look at the ladder or the Footy Tipping Contest standings.
I will, however, leave you with a reminder that the byes continue next week, so the whole situation is pretty fluid anyways.
I will see you tomorrow with the Queen’s Birthday game highlights and the updated standings.