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Demonland

BLOWN UP by George on the Outer

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Demonland    5,047
It wasn’t just the wind that blew up in Hobart, it was also the Demons' chance to snatch a top four position, even if only temporarily, but potentially to put themselves in the challenge for the double chance come season end.
 
Now they fall back into the pack, and are dependent upon the results of others to ensure they play finals football in September.
 
Blowing it was the real story of the game.  
 
Playing against a side that had only won four games and without their first choice ruckman there should have been no question of the result.  
 
And with a strong wind favouring one end of the ground, the Demons sure were able to keep North to a respectable distance in the quarters when the Kangaroos had the advantage.  
 
Only 2 goals behind at quarter time and a solitary kick leading into the final quarter.  
 
However, U10’s football teaches players to kick long with the wind, not try anything too fancy and play direct. While a modicum of that was seen in the 2nd term, it simply didn’t happen when it mattered in the final quarter. Too much handball and dinky kicks or trying to hit up a man didn’t work and yet Melbourne continued with this disastrous style of play. Twice in the final quarter long kicks were used and both times they resulted in goals.  
 
This was also a game for absolutely and completely appalling performances by some individuals.  Dom Tyson opened with five of his first six disposals going directly to the opposition. There's not much point in getting 30 touches if you can only hit the target 60% of the time. He almost topped the clangers list again this week, finishing just behind Jordan Lewis who managed seven of his own.  
 
Unfortunately, with Lewis playing in the backline these errors resulted in multiple goals, to the opposition.  The difference between winning and losing.
 
They weren’t alone.  Max Gawn played like a first year ruckman and kept hitting the ball the wrong direction or directly to North mids.  He has never rucked so poorly, and the result was North had an excess of clearances, despite the ruck taps going Melbourne's way. Thank goodness for Clayton Oliver who racked up 26 contested possessions and 12 clearances, to keep the damage to a minimum and provide opportunities for others.  
 
Jack Trengove probably put a line through his name for next year as he was exposed horribly for lack of pace on numerous occasions. Jack Watts has reverted to his form of 3 years ago with a mere 6 kicks for the game, while the majority of players could barely get to mid-teens for number of touches for the match.
 
The defenders were, in contrast, fantastic.  While Ben Brown finished with for goals, there was little that could be done to stop someone so big and with a prodigious mark.  But Sam Frost and Oscar Mac both had 7 spoils each to limit the extent of his influence.  They were ably assisted by the ever reliable Neville Jetta with 17 touches, 7 marks, 5 contested possessions and 100% disposal efficiency.  Michael Hibberd with 27 touches and 9 marks made for a strong defensive team, but they were let down time and time again as others failed to mark their man or read the play with the wind to let North in with ridiculously easy marking opportunities in the forward 50.
 
In the lead up to this game it was right to wonder how the Demons could fit Nathan Jones and Bernie Vince into the side  for next week's vital clash against the Giants.  After this effort, there are plenty of players who will be in for consideration to take the exit path.  
 
A broken collar bone to Hogan means yet another hole to be filled up forward, as well.  
 
Too often we have seen the chance to really stamp some authority on the competition.  This was another of those chances blown.  We can only hope the whole season doesn’t become a blow-up as it did in the last games of 2016.  
 
Melbourne 2.0.12 8.5.53 8.8.56 10.12.72
 
North Melbourne 4.4.28 6.4.40 9.8.62 11.10.76
 
Goals 
 
Melbourne Garlett 3 T McDonald Melksham 2 Hogan Hunt Oliver
 
North Melbourne Brown 4 Simpkin 2 Higgins McDonald Swallow Thompson Waite
 
Best 
 
Melbourne Oliver Jetta, O McDonald T McDonald Garlett
 
North Melbourne Brown Higgins McDonald Swallow Ziebell
 
Changes 
 
Melbourne Nil
 
North Melbourne Nil
 
Injuries 
 
Melbourne Hogan (collarbone) 
 
North Melbourne Waite (calf)
 
Reports 
 
Melbourne Nil
 
North Melbourne Nil
 
Umpires Fisher, Harris, Pannell
 
Attendance 13,939 at Blundstone Arena

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