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We were expecting that after last week’s comprehensive defeat by Brisbane, our coach Mick Stinear would have his charges coming out breathing finals fire.

Instead, it was North who had the aggression, the numbers, who blocked our scoring avenues and rendered us impotent, unable to match the Kangas during any phase of the match.  

Darren Crocker, the North coach, later highlighted that how to beat Melbourne is no secret following recent losses to Adelaide and Brisbane and now North.  

With the secret out, will Geelong be our next subduer?

In fairness North was brilliant. They won across all three lines and made us look second rate. By jingo they laid 104 tackles.

We were not able to generate any corridor switches, not helped by our many dropped marks and kicking errors. Our forwards were unable to halve contests, never ever seemed to be in front and ultimately the footy never stayed long enough near our goals.

No surprise then that Melbourne, despite having the greatest attack in AFLW history, was unable to score a goal in the first 3 quarters.  

One goal three points is our second lowest score in history and the 41-point loss is our second highest loss. It was also unhappily our first loss at IKON Park.

Libby Birch is excellent as the deep defender with her intercept marking and reading of the play.

However North forced her to play one on one and you could see at ground level that she was being constantly outbodied and outsprinted.  North has three talls in Randall, Shierlaw and Emma King and it would seem we were missing one key defender.

Meggs watched all the AFLW finals games over the weekend and the standard of matches was really high.  

In a sliding doors moment, former Dee Brenna Tarrant left us for greater opportunities in Sin City. She has really blossomed and was the standout Swans key defender on Saturday.

The North big three of Garner, Riddell and Kearney were superb.  Expecting Heater to blanket the best player in the AFLW as a core strategy every time needs rethinking Mick.

In terms of our team, Tyla Hanks and Liv Purcell worked tirelessly for 4 quarters.  They along with others such as Goldie, Gay, Kate Hore, B Mackin, Paxy, Chaplin and Loz Pearce showed the level of physical commitment required to play in finals.  

Unfortunately, there was never enough connection to ever win this game.  

Anyway, enough doom and gloom.  

We are still alive in Season Eight.

Let’s move on, cash in our double chance and bounce back like true defending champions against the Cats.

In terms of the game:

Meggs and Mrs Meggs sat amongst the players families this week which was lovely and engaged in some lively chats during the game.

Q1 It was a mostly tight opening quarter.

Tahlia Randall outbodied Loz Pearce in a ruck contest before slamming it onto her boot for the only goal of the quarter.

North peppers the goals for points only and we feel lucky that no damage is done.  

Hansky has a late chance but mistimes her kick.

¼ time: Dees 0.1.1 Roos 1.4.10

Q2 We struggle to get the ball forward and when we do it comes straight out again.

North scores the only goal of the quarter by Randall who outbodies Birch in a marking contest.

It is swirly out there for footy but really sunny and warm in our seats.

½ time: Dees 0.1.1 Roos 2.4.16

Q3 Mick makes a move. Tayla Harris starts the quarter in the ruck, with Hanksy, Kate and Paxy and instantly we move the ball forward and Loz Pearce marks directly in front.  Momentum is lost as she misses left a la Max Gawn.

North then explode for their best quarter of the game.

Three rather impressive goals by North to Randall and then Eddey on the run twice.

The Dees double their score but it’s only 2 points in total.  We can’t believe that the league’s most potent forward line has failed to fire a bullet. Zanks what’s happening?  

¾ time: Dees 0.2.2 Roos 5.6.36

Q4 We are beaten in every quarter.

Kate Hore marks nicely but hits the post from directly in front.  A few moments later Bannan who has been mostly unsighted takes a nice mark and kicks truly for our only goal for the day.

North’s Gatt runs 20 metres without bouncing it and O’Loughlin kicks North’s penultimate goal.

Emma King then puts the final nail in our coffin for a 41-point drubbing.

What has happened to the #DemonSpirit these past two weeks?

Dees 1.3.9 Roos 7.8.50

Coaches and next week

Melbourne Coach Mick Stinear was thankful that our successful home and away performance allowed us the double chance.  He said North’s defence was sound and they thoroughly deserved the win.  We were scored against too easily and there wasn’t enough connection.

North coach Darren Crocker said his side has built a unique defensive system over a number of seasons and was pleased how it held up in finals conditions.  He referenced the tackling and pressure by Adelaide and Brisbane in their recent wins over Melbourne which demonstrated the method of how to beat us.

For Melbourne, another huge task awaits Mick Stinear and his football department as they regroup for a battle against the confident Cats next Sunday at 3.05pm AEDT at IKON Park. 

MELBOURNE 0.1.1 0.2.2 0.2.2 1.3.9

NORTH MELBOURNE 1.4.10 2.4.16 5.6.36 7.8.50



NORTH MELBOURNE Randall 3 Eddey 2 E. King O'Loughlin


MELBOURNE Purcell Hanks Hore Gillard Pearce

NORTH MELBOURNE Garner Randall Kearney Riddell Eddey Ferguson Gatt



NORTH MELBOURNE Shierlaw (teeth/cut lip)




UMPIRES Adams Laycock Mitchell

CROWD 5,431 at Ikon Park


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