AFLW Round 5 – Adelaide v Carlton: “Almost, but not quite”

I initially followed Carlton’s Round 5 clash against Adelaide on the AFL Women’s app from Oxford Street in Sydney as I was craning my neck for the best possible view of the Mardi Gras Parade.


I wasn’t surprised by the scores and the fallout that seemed to happening in South Australia but I did swiftly put my phone back in my pocket so I could focus on the more positive things happening around me.


Back home in Melbourne I sat down to watch the replay and to pinpoint where Carlton had let victory slip from their grasp again. Around halfway through the third quarter the best summation of this came from commentator Jason Bennett who gave his very accurate summary of Carlton’s season: “Almost, but not quite”.


The more I reflected on his words the more it applied. Carlton, for the second week in a row had almost equal inside 50s, had more hit-outs and impressively kept the rampant Adelaide scoreless in the third term.


It was in the third quarter where, “almost, but not quite” applied the most. There was repeated entries into the forward 50, desperation to maintain possession with short and lateral kicks and intense pressure around the ball.


However, when the ball went into the 50 there was always a chance that ‘almost’ resulted in a goal, the short kick to maintain possession couldn’t ‘quite’ get to the intended player and the pressure around the ball never reaped any rewards.


You could see it on the Carlton’s players faces. They looked exhausted, they looked deflated, it looked as if many were thinking, “we’re doing everything right but it’s not quite working.”


They were almost there, but not quite.


That’s not to say that there wasn’t anything positive about their performance. Katie Loynes showed why Carlton missed her in their loss to the Bulldogs a week earlier. No one for the Blues goes as hard, for as long as Katie Loynes does. And if she gets knocked down she’s up on her feet a second later to lay another tackle. Her endeavour at and around the contest is almost the Blues best asset.


Breann Moody was excellent in the ruck, winning the hit outs for the game and continuing her excellent work playing a kind of sweeper role down back. So sure with her decision making and clean with her hands made her a well deserved rising star nominee.


Sarah Hosking continued to lead from the front in her role as stand in captain in Bri Davey’s absence. Her run and carry and how she plays for her team was another stand out in round 5.


Tayla Harris really stood up in this game and her work rate up the ground was a really great addition to her game this round. Kerryn Harrington played her best game to date and looks as if she’s arrived in the AFLW after a few weeks getting used to the pace.


Like their game against the Bulldogs the week before, the Blues were just beaten by the better team. It is the ‘team things’ that Adelaide do so well and that was what has seen them be so successful over the AFLW’s first two seasons.


Before round 5, Crows coach Bec Goddard said that her team ‘didn’t need a miracle’ to win at Norwood Oval. And it definitely wasn’t a miracle that gifted them their win but their hard ball gets.


The contested possession count swayed hugely in Adelaide’s favour and their ability to get the contested ball and the clearance, particularly out of the middle, was a game changer for the Crows.


So while the Crows continue to soar up the ladder with a grand final spot almost theirs, Carlton will need a miracle to grab one.



ADELAIDE   2.2   6.3   6.3   8.7 (55)
CARLTON   1.4   2.4   2.7   2.8 (20)

Adelaide: Wallace 3, Jones 2, McCormick, Hewett, Sedunary
Carlton: Harris, Vescio 

Adelaide: Wallace, Randall, Jones, Marinoff, Phillips, Rajcic
Carlton: Loynes, S.Hosking, Harris, Moody, Audley, Gay 

Adelaide: Phillips (quad), Cramey (hamstring)
Carlton: Nil 

Reports: Nil

Umpires: Mirabile, Strybos, Crosby

Official crowd: 5970 at Norwood Oval




  1. Yvette Wroby says

    Nice report Lucy. I love your optimism: they are almost a chance when I think there’s no chance. I love the Blues this year, and with Bri back next year, they’ll be better. Good to see them working harder too. Others are starting to step up, and if Tayla can stay on the field, she’s worth a good two-players as well.

  2. John Butler says

    Definitely taking the ‘glass half full’ approach there, Lucy. Keep the faith.

    A much better effort, but not much to show for it on the scoreboard. Absolutely correct re Katie.


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