AFL Round 3 Fearless Review: The Grand Final rematch that wasn’t.

FEARLESS 2014 RD 3: The Grand Final rematch that wasn’t. Hawks by so far.

It was made for Freo, in theory, a chance to atone for last year’s Grand Final loss against the Hawks. Both teams had been hit at selection – Hodge and McEvoy for the Hawks, Fyfe and Barlow for the Dockers. The game was over too early as the Hawks powered to a 58 pt win with B-listers (Smith, Breust, Simpkin, Puopolo) starring.

The Tigers would’ve pencilled in the 4 points on the way to the finals, taking on the Dogs on Saturday. Losing gun Deledio at selection didn’t help the Tiger cause, but neither did a 6 goal headstart afforded to the Dogs by the half. A 6 goal to 2 3rd qtr evened it up at the last change, but super-sub Gia kicked the winner. Dogs by 2pts.

Rumours of Sydney’s Buddy-inspired demise have been greatly exaggerated. A trip to the City of Churches’ helped the Swans find the spark. Buddy roamed for 21 stats, 6 marks and 4 goals justifying the Bloods’ faith. The Crows, however, copped more injuries on their way to a 63pt capitulation. Patience Sando! Tex is back really soon.

Banal marketing of the Q-clash aside, Tropic Thunder turned into a Tropical rout as the Sunnyboys dismantled their slightly northern neighbours at Club Metricon on Saturday twilight. Lions’ fortunes went down further when Rich did his ACL and Merrett’s elbow KO’d Swallow. Then Ablett led his merry band home by 53pts.

On preseason form and predictions, the fact that the Saints led West Coast at Pattersons at ½ time on says much for Alan Richardson’s coaching. 8 pts was the margin and veteran Saints (Riewoldt, Hayes, Joey) were aided by young gun Dunstan. Eagles eventually kicked clear with 7 of the last 8 goals to win by 25pts. Cox 276.

Collingwood and Geelong turned on another close spectacle. A shootout in the last quarter featured Tom Hawkins at one end, kicking 3 versus Tom Lonergan holding Travis Cloke goalless, allowing young Jamie Elliott to take centre stage. Elliott, with the obligatory sleeve, kicked 3 to end up with 5. Pies nearly but the Cats by 12pts.

Melbourne travelled to Sydney’s west to take on the vastly improved GWS outfit. A game that was an even money bet played out that way for three quarters. Lake Spotless saw a restricted first half open up somewhat after half time, as both teams tried to master the wet. Treloar-inspired Giants went up a cog in the last, a 32pt win.

Port travelled to Etihad with a well-deserved reputation for running opponents off their legs in the last. Against North, the @19000 present got a close game with many lead changes, but a pinged-(ham)string to Port’s Monfries tipped into the Roos favour. Roos by 7pts, Cunnington and Greenwood leading the grunt that undid the leg speed.

As part of school holidays, the AFL scheduled a Sunday night blockbuster between the Blues and the Bombers. The Bombers went in without a recognised ruckman. That didn’t matter. Essendon scooted to a 6-goal lead at qtr time & became an 81pt win. For Darth Mick, Elton John said it best – I guess that’s why they call it the Blues.

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