Round 7 – Melbourne v Hawthorn: In the pink


In the pink

Round 7, Melbourne v Hawthorn, May 7, MCG


This was a Pink Lady match, maybe the first Hawthorn has partaken in? I picked up a free pink cap on the way in, and wore it as part of the ‘turn the MCG’ pink’ endeavour. However the less than 40 000 crowd was always going to make that problematic. Maybe the snow season has kicked in early, or members from both sides have already written off this season.


A Sunday mid-afternoon match, probably the fans least favourite starting time. The coin toss was at 3:18 p.m. Hawthorn won, and are kicking to the city end. The Hawks banner proclaims’ Billy Hartung 50 games’ and Rioli and Birchall are back. Melbourne have pink on their jumpers (instead of the usual red) and a bonus string of pink ladies on the lower back. Hogan and Wagner are back. It will be interesting to see if the Hawthorn midfield can get enough of the ball.


The first score is a set-shot behind to Langford, typical of his year so far. An intercept, then a good Hawks handball sequence ends with an O’Brien goal from a difficult angle. Hawthorn seem to be up and about. Lewis is not being booed when he gets a possession, that seems to be reserved for Frawley, go figure. Hodge’s bright green boots certainly stand out. The Demons do a coast-to-coast run, Burton’s fumble almost lets them complete it. In reply a Rioli to Gunston to Roughead chain ends in a goal. Birchall leaves the ground and goes down the race. McEvoy takes a pack mark, there’s the siren, and he goals. A good start by the Hawks.


Snap goals start the scoring in the second quarter, first it is Viney from the boundary, then Gunston. Langford chimes in with a dodge and a bouncing goal. It looks like Birchall is gone for the day, on the bench in a jacket. There’s quite a bit of back and forth, and it ends up 3 goals each this quarter.


After half time Melbourne are on the field well before Hawthorn emerges. But in less than a minute of play Roughy goals! Then there’s a very soft 50 m penalty which results in a Melbourne goal. Petracca racks up the possessions in the centre, and the tide seems to be turning. Every 50-50 decision goes Melbourne’s way, and they handily win the quarter, going to the final break only 1 point down.


O’Brien opens the scoring with a goal, and Watts replies after a free. The lights come on. Now the scores are level. Puoplo’s tackle is unrewarded, but downfield Burton wins the ball which results in a Roughead mark and goal. A long goal from Smith maybe seals it. But Hogan and Lewis fire back, and it’s 3 points with a couple of minutes to play. The Hawks hang on, and maybe continue their season turn around.


It was Jordan Lewis’ first match against his old team, and while he played well, it wasn’t enough to secure victory. Ben McEvoy dominated in the ruck, admittedly against Melbourne’s back up ruckmen, but he’s having a very good season so far.


Melbourne         1.1          4.2          11.6        14.7 (91)

Hawthorn            5.4          8.7          11.7        14.10 (94)


Goals: Melbourne: 3 Garlett, Hogan; 2 Hunt, Lewis; Pedersen, Viney, Jones, Watts

Hawthorn: 4 Roughhead; 2 McEvoy, Gunston, O’Brien; Breust, Langford, Burgoyne, Smith

Best: Melbourne: Viney, Lewis, Frost, Hogan

Hawthorn: Roughead, McEvoy, Burgoyne, Mitchell

Injuries: Hunt (left shoulder); O’Meara (knee soreness – replaced), Birchall (right knee)

Crowd: 38 693

Umpires: Kamolins, Ryan, Jeffrey

My votes: Roughead 3, McEvoy 2, Viney 1

About Alan Stewart

My first VFL memory is perched on my grandfather's shoulders watching a game at Glenferrie Oval during the school holidays, probably about 1968. Other football immersion is from many hours assisting my father doing maintenance or selling savs at the Tarrawingee football ground during the 1970s.

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