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THE TORRENS THUMPING by George on the Outer



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THE TORRENS THUMPING - LEAVING THE DEMONS BEHIND

That headline might lead a reader to think that Melbourne had lost badly in Adelaide but no! 

It was actually the MFC which left it’s demons from the previous week behind as it applied the blowtorch to the Crows in the final quarter of their match at the Adelaide Oval and went on their merry way to record a 51 point win before their biggest crowd of the year (even if they were mainly hostile).

Much had been made in the media about the comments of Chairman Glen Bartlett and Coach Simon Goodwin following the team’s disastrous performance against that other team from South Australia, Port Adelaide. However, coming up against a side that had lost their first nine games in a row this season, made nine changes for the game and was sitting stone motherless last on the ladder, this result was exactly what was needed. A loss was obviously out of the question but the team had to do more than just get over the line - it had to be a thumping but, for a good part of the game, it was looking as if it was going to be anything but. 

Barely a goal separated the two sides at ¼ and ½ time, while the final change saw the Demons leading by a mere two goals. 

And that was when the thumping started. 

Six successive centre clearances, courtesy of Jack Viney, Angus Brayshaw, Clayton Oliver and Christian Petracca saw the ball heading into the forward line again and again.  There was little the Adelaide defence could do as the Demons forwards made the most of the opportunities and, for a change, they even kicked straight and true. The final quarter score of seven goals three behinds was emphatic, and showed what this side is capable of doing.

The mids were the ones who turned the game, and kept the side in the game when the going was tougher.  Clayton Oliver completely dominated around stoppages, with 34 disposals and backing it up with 6 tackles. Importantly, he changed the way he played from previously, using his leg speed and mixing up both kicking and handball. 

Ably assisted by Jack Viney, who right from the first bounce showed to everyone that he was serious about the game and the result.  22 touches and 8 clearances for the game, was on the back of a first quarter blitz from him. 

Angus Brayshaw could have been heading for oblivion after his first half, but what a change in the second! Finally, put into the middle, he showed his wares and simply took over where others had left off.  Seventeen touches for the game, after having only two to half time, was a complete turnaround and a not so subtle way to send a message to the coach about where he needs to be played.

Down back, the defenders simply destroyed the Adelaide forwards. Steven May was a rock and held a cumbersome Taylor Walker to only five touches for the game, and nothing to show on the scoreboard.  Importantly, he was the general who marshalled the troops and came to the defence of them when Adelaide tried to bully his team-mates.  This left Jake Lever to do his thing spoiling the incoming attacks, while between May and Lever they intercepted the opposition ball 15 times.

A further flow-on effect was that Christian Salem was able to get the ball into his hands, and use his lethal kicking leg to best effect. Twenty-six touches off the half-back line provided the team with attacking moves, while Michael Hibberd, Jay Lockhart and even Nathan Jones provided that final desperation at the contest when needed. 

Up forward it was a much satisfying outcome.  13 goals 10 behinds was a better accuracy rate than we have been accustomed to for most of this year in front of goal, and the straight kicking kept destroying any momentum that Adelaide built during the game. Luke Jackson was magnificent, particularly when he relieved Max in the ruck, as his basketball background and athleticism enables him to keep his feet and recover quickly in the contested situation. He was rewarded with a couple of goals of his own, and the Demon fans have much to look forward to from him in the future.

Two successive games in Adelaide - one down and one to go. The team should know what is required against North, who have plenty of their own problems. 

But once again a convincing win is needed; another thumping on the banks of the Torrens is what the fans want to see to put the side back in contention for the finals. 

It is the only way to exorcise those past Demons!

MELBOURNE 3.2.20 5.4.34 6.7.43 13.10.88

ADELAIDE 2.4.16 4.5.29 4.7.31 5.7.31

GOALS

Melbourne Weideman 3 Fritsch Jackson Melksham Viney 2 Bennell Oliver

Adelaide Seedsman 2 Crocker Fogarty Himmelberg

BEST

Melbourne Oliver Viney May Petracca Salem Lever

Adelaide M Crouch Brown Keays Laird Seedsman

INJURIES

Melbourne vandenBerg (eye socket)

Adelaide Smith replaced in selected side by Crocker, Hamill (concussion)

REPORTS

Melbourne Alex Neal-Bullen for careless conduct, severe impact and high contact on Will Hamill

Adelaide Nil

UMPIRES Donlon, Gavine, Rebeschini

CROWD 12,022 at Adelaide Oval

ReportRd102020.png

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