Adelaide Crow Over Hard Fought Victory

May 28, 2021 by
Filed under: NSW Demons 

Round 10 – Adelaide V Melbourne

Liam Chambers

Apparently Crows hold grudges. I’m not sure what Melbourne did to offend their southern brethren but the team from the city of churches just wouldn’t give up and the Dees were handed their first loss of the season.

We can feel slightly hard done by with the AFL ruling that Nick Murray’s handpass across the boundary line was deliberate and Adelaide should have been penalised. I’m sure Geelong fans will empathise with us but then again maybe not. Anyway, that’s footy and it’s a good learning curve.

It all started so well when wing man Ed Langdon snapped the ball in from the right hand side of the goal square. Adelaide responded with Riley Thilthorpe collecting a tapped down ball and taking advantage of a slow reacting defence to kick the Crows’ first. Max Gawn was back to his marking best and converted from his set shot 15m in front of goal. Adelaide continued to push hard and were eventually rewarded when Taylor (Tex) Walker marked in the goal square. 

Tom McDonald was clearly enjoying himself when he collected and ran around the Crows’ defence to start a trifecta of unanswered goals for Melbourne. Next Trent Rivers’ run up the field and kick from outside the 50m line sailed through before Sam Weideman marked the ball 25m out to score his first since returning to the top tier. The Dees looked to be pulling away but Adelaide had other ideas and small forward James Rowe made his mark when he collected the ball from a Max Gawn tap down and scored the Crows’ third. A minute later, Rowe was then awarded a free and scored from the pocket.

Melbourne started the second term aggressively, with a great run involving Christian Petracca who capped it off with a brilliantly targeted kick at Bailey Fritsch who ran on to kick into an open goal. Again the Crows struck back with David Mackay scoring from 30m after a well put together handball chain. When Darcy Fogarty was awarded a free kick in front of goal, Adelaide took the lead by a one point margin.

At this point the Dees were under enormous pressure but pushed back with a great Sam Weideman kick to Tom McDonald. Unfortunately Tom was unable to capitalise. Ed Langdon and Clayton Oliver combined to better effect though with Oliver’s wide kick sailing high through the uprights. Melbourne were regaining some control but the Crows intense passion was impressive.

Riley Thilthorpe got his second when the ball literally dropped into his hands in front of goal. Ben Keays snap from 35m out gave Adelaide back the lead. With half time looming, James Harmes superb kick from a set shot on the 50m line meant both teams went into the break on even terms. Though undoubtedly remaining in the game, nonetheless the Dees were far from their best. Christian Salem’s precision and vision was missed and Melbourne struggled to play their normal game. They were scrambling at times under the pressure from Adelaide. They badly needed a reset.

Ben Keays long and high snap restored the Crows’ lead and Paul Seedsman extended their advantage to two goals. Suddenly all the momentum was with Adelaide and the partisan crowd roared it’s supported from the Oval rafters. It looked like the home side had the undefeated visitors on the ropes and the Crows faithful were loving it. The Dees needed a circuit breaker and when Petracca stepped up to score from the 50m line, he inspired a Melbourne resurgence.

Luke Jackson was having a quiet night by his standards but he threw himself in a tackling frenzy which allowed Kysaiah Pickett to sprint around the defence into the goal. His actions boosted the spirits of players and fans alike and Melbourne looked to be handling Adelaide’s frantically paced pressure with more confidence. Unfortunately Sam Berry was awarded a free kick directly in front of goal and scored form point blank range.

Oliver Clayton was without doubt the player of the night for Melbourne and his mark and run on to snap one through reinstated the Dees’ lead just before the end of the quarter.

With only a slim 3 point lead the game was proving to be the hardest yet for Melbourne to crack. The tide looked to be turning in Melbourne’s favour when Charlie Spargo, ably assisted by Oliver, snapped a goal to extend the margin to 9 points. However, Adelaide again found a way back into the match after a fumble and a free kick awarded to Shane McAdam saw the forward score from the 50m line.

Melbourne was fighting really hard but so were the Crows and the result was far from certain. Again it seemed that the Dees were finally pulling away when first Ed Langdon, then Clayton Oliver got lucky bounces to push the lead out to 16 points. While Oliver was inspiring Melbourne, Tex Walker was doing the same for the Crows. His contested mark and round the corner kick clawed the margin back to 10. Darcy Fogarty got another with a great kick from the 50m line. Then it was Walker again from 45m to give Adelaide a one point lead with a minute to go.

And of course that infamous Nick Murray handpass.

With the return of Covid, several Victorian teams are anxiously awaiting the AFL’s decision on whether all games will be played this weekend. We are scheduled to play the Western Bulldogs. It’s being billed as the clash of the season and if it goes ahead it’ll be a blinder. I don’t want the Dees to be negative but I’ll make an exception with respect to their Covid test.

Go the Mighty Dees!!!


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