Time on – round 21

WINNERS AND LOSERS

Collingwood 14.5 (89) def. St Kilda 10.10 (70)

Hawthorn 31.11 (197) def. Port Adelaide 5.2 (32)

Carlton 16.19 (115) def. Fremantle 12.13 (85)

Essendon 23.12 (150) def. Western Bulldogs 15.11 (101)

Brisbane Lions 18.15 (123) def. Gold Coast Suns 8.13 (61)

West Coast Eagles 16.14 (110) def. Melbourne 9.8 (62)

Richmond 14.15 (99) def. Sydney Swans 7.14 (56)

Geelong 14.12 (96) def. Adelaide 12.13 (85)

3 LIKES

1. Mark Bickley

The former Adelaide dual premiership skipper must be gaining the rights to coaching the Crows in 2012. He’s injected spirit and an attacking
flair into the team, along with new tactics and philosophies that almost gave them a remarkable victory over Geelong yesterday. Bickley has also fast-tracked the development of the club’s young talent by giving them senior exposure, which in turn has given the older heads a new lease of life and a desire to win. Kudos to Bickley.

2. Michael Hurley

Drafted as a key defender in 2008, the no.5 draft pick has proved he is just as good, if not better, as a key forward. He has physical presence,
attacks the footy and has significantly improved his contested marking since last season and was highly influential on Saturday night. With other options down back, Hurley looks more than comfortable as their go-to man out of the goalsquare. The Bombers just need to get another high draft pick, centre half forward Scott Gumbleton, injury-free and on the park. The Bombers have a potential super player on their hands in Hurley.

3. Matthew Leuenberger

The Brisbane Lions have endured a horrendous 18 months but the perseverance of playing the kids is starting to show that this proud club has some genuine talent going forward. It’s taken him a few years but ruckman Matthew Leuenberger has arrived after his best game for the Lions in the Q-clash on the weekend. The Lions’ no.4 selection in the 2006 National Draft was outstanding – 19 disposals, 12 contested possessions, 7 clearances, 2 goals.

3 DISLIKES

1. Port Adelaide

South Australian footy has copped a battering this year, with both the Crows and the Power struggling in so many areas. The Power, though,     are the worst of the two. On and off field issues have plagued much of what has proved to be a battling year for Matthew Primus and his charges.  Two  100 plus beltings in a row just isn’t good enough. They have the talent but the effort, desire and attitude isn’t there. They’re a lost hope,   Port Adelaide. The Power must somehow hold onto their young talent, which is half the battle and trade in some more. The coaching staff isn’t impressive and the lack of experience and support for the coach must be an issue. The Power must make an effort in the remaining three weeks  or more heads will roll in what I’m predicting to be a mass exodus from the club at season’s end.

2. St Kilda’s bad kicking

The delivery by the Saints to their skipper Nick Riewoldt on Friday night was very average and it proved the difference in the end as the Pies ran out 19 point victors. Riewoldt became increasingly frustrating due to his teammates inability to put the ball to his advantage on several occasions,
as well as the great defensive work of Magpie pair Chris Tarrant and Ben Reid. Can’t see the Saints going past week one of the finals if their disposal continues to dry up, as it will under the intensity of finals football.

3. The Match Review Panel

Big case for the MRP this week, with Magpie Chris Tarrant likely to be cited for his “fair bump” on St Kilda’s Justin Koschitzke. Koschitzke wasn’t hurt and the bump didn’t make forceful contact to the head so this charge should be thrown out.

 

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