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DRAWN AND DEEFLATED by George on the Outer


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1st v 17th ... it would seem a sure one way contest between the Hawks and the Demons but it was not to be with the game finishing in a draw, the only positive being the Demons still retain their top spot on the ladder.

Melbourne was taught a football lesson by Al Clarkson, who with limited resources, just instructed his players to scrap, fight and surge the ball forward.  It stifled the Melbourne free flowing style of play and denied them the opportunities they could normally expect.

It wasn’t helped that the Demons reverted to the old “kick it long” into the 50m arc, and if it wasn’t for Bayley Fritsch leading correctly, and finishing with 3 goals, the result would have been very different.

Unfortunately for the Melbourne fans, it was obvious from the start the side was not switched on.  And to add to the ever present MFCSS, the side has now lost 2 games and drawn 1 against 3 of the bottom 4 sides. 

What is the problem?

What is the problem with the inaccurate kicking in front of goal?  4 goals 4 behinds in the first quarter should have been more like 6.2 or 7.1.  And it continued right into the final quarter when Fritsch and Brayshaw managed only a solitary point between them from two kicks inside 50. 

Hawthorn just pressured with extra numbers around the ball from the second quarter, and we didn’t respond.  It didn’t help with our use of individual players.  Petracca spent a long time off the ground in the 3rd quarter when the game was in the balance.  Gawn was down to 83% game time, well below his usual, leaving Jackson for too long in the ruck at critical times in the game.  Spargo was only given 64% game time despite his 7 score involvements! 

The Hawks hit the front in the final term, and Melbourne managed to wrestle the lead back courtesy of a Pickett goal, but yet again, we conceded another out the back goal down the other end. 

The backs did their usual fine job, but 5 of Hawthorns goals came from their mids.  Ours only provided one being the winger, Brayshaw.  Lever excelled with 15 intercepts, and Harry Petty despite an early injury concern took a number of telling contested marks and spoils.  You can’t fault the work of Salem and Hunt with 10 intercepts and 6 respectively, but the mids let the team down badly with their lack of coverage of their opponents.

The possessions of the mids was evenly matched for both sides, but it was the lack of forward output and defensive cover that made the difference in the end. 

The poor forwards could be excused thinking they had been pushed back in time to 2019 with the way the ball was coming in.  The kick it long and high was obviously not working from early in the game, but we just kept doing it.  Getting the ball to ground was the Hawthorn plan and we assisted them.  While Pickett provided chances around the packs, ANB did nothing again, while Spargo needed to be on the ground instead of the bench.

Another deflating result for the Demons, yet they still hold top spot. Truly amazing, but it shows the value of the good start to the season that we have had.  The big question now is with only 5 rounds to go before finals, can this slump be arrested. 

Can we show some grit and polish against a 14th placed Suns next round? 

Without that the Demon fans can expect to have their season expectations deflated in a big way.

MELBOURNE 4.4.28 6.7.43 9.10.64 11.13.79

HAWTHORN 1.2.8 5.2.32 10.3.63 12.7.79

GOALS

Melbourne Fritsch 3 Pickett 2 Brayshaw Brown Hunt McDonald Neal-Bullen Spargo

Hawthorn Breust 3 Lewis 2 Howe Koschitzke McEvoy Mitchell Moore Philips Worpel

BEST

Melbourne Oliver Petracca Fritsch Jordon Gawn Viney

Hawthorn Mitchell Breust O'Meara Worpel McEvoy

INJURIES


Melbourne Nil

Hawthorn Conor Nash (isolation) replaced in selected side by James Cousins,

REPORTS

Melbourne Nil

Hawthorn Nil

SUBSTITUTES

Melbourne Sparrow (unused)

Hawthorn Newcombe (unused)

UMPIRES: Justin Power, Matt Stevic, Andrew Stephens

Official Crowd 0 at The MCG

ReportRd182021.png

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