AFL round 2 recap

Jamie Samuel AFL

Carlton has continued its miraculous start to its new era, defeating the Western Bulldogs by 12-points at Marvel Stadium on Thursday night. They showed incredible resilience to achieve a win over last years grand finalists, they had to this with Ashley Hansen as stand in head coach, for the Covid-19 infected Michael Voss. They also were missing star forward Jack Martin and star midfielder Adam Cerra due to Covid-19 infections and AFL health and safety protocols.

Not only this, but the Blues led by as much as 37-points in the 2nd quarter, before surviving a 2nd half onslaught from the Western Bulldogs. But the Blues worries down forward were solved in the end from Harry McKay and Charlie Curnow kicking 9 goals between them, including 2 late goals from Curnow to cancel out the Dogs comeback charge.

The Blues were out of the blocks early, Curnow kicking the opening goal within 20 seconds of the game start. The Blues showed their intensity by kicking 5 goals to 4 in the 1st quarter and taking a 7-point lead into quarter time. The Blues took the game by the scruff of the neck in the 2nd quarter, kicking a remarkable 7 goals to 3. The Blues got the 1st 4 of the term through Patrick Cripps, Harry McKay, Matt Owies and as Charlie Curnow bent one round the corner from 35, the roof was lifted off Marvel Stadium, with the Blues a whooping 32-point in front. After Aaron Naughton pulled 1 back for the Dogs, Mckay and Zac Fisher got the Blues out by 6 goals. The sides went goal for goal the rest of the quarter, Mckay’s 4th with a strong mark and snap gave the Blues the biggest lead of the game, 37-points. Mitch Hannan took a screamer and slotted the goal, reducing the margin to 31-points at the half.

The Dogs got the game back within reach in the 3rd quarter, kicking 4 goals to 2, and sent a scare through the Blues camp. As they kicked 3 of the 1st 4 goals of the term. But a clever snap from Curnow got the Blues back out 3 goals at the final change. Marcus Bontempelli finally got in on the act, taking a strong mark and kicking the opening goal. Curnow recieved a free kick 45 out on the boundary and was ice cool. Hannan kick a GOTY from the pocket, which went to goal review but was payed, as the Dogs closed to within 2 goals again. But who else, but Charlie to revive the Blues faithful. Taking another inside 50 mark, going back and delivering the knock out blow, lifting the Blues fans out of their seats and into jubilation. The Dogs still had their chances, but missed 4 consecutive set shots. The final margin was reduced to 12-points, and how iconic that as the final siren sounded, it ended in Harry McKay’s hands after a 4 goal effort.

The final siren to jubilant Blues fans who lifted the roof off Marvel Stadium, with the ball in McKay’s hands, as the fans belted out the song. The fans who have been through so much over the last 20 years it appears have new hope. They’re best start to a season in a decade. A gamestyle that is well balanced defensively as well as attack. New young talent players, Cripps hitting top form, two main forwards in Mckay and Curnow. Carlton can continue their winning form when they play Hawthorn on Sunday, in what could be, unexpectedly the biggest game of the year yet. Who would have pictured both these teams to be unbeaten at the end of round 2? The Dogs season could be in big trouble, the grand finalists are staring down a 0-3 start when they face the unbeaten Sydney at Marvel on Thursday night. In what looms a must win clash for Luke Beverage’s men.

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Sydney started their season 2-0, downing Geelong by 30-points on Friday night. With Lance Franklin kicking 4 to reach the 1000 goal milestone. In the last quarter as he kicked it, the fans flooded onto the SCG turf as they witnessed an historic moment.

Geelong got the openning 2 goals, before Sydney stormed ahead by kicking the next 4 goals of the quarter. Sydney taking an 11-point quarter time lead. The Swans got the game on their terms in the 2nd quarter, kicking 7 goals to 4 to get out to a 26-point half time lead.

The Swans took charge of the premership quarter, kicking 4 goals to 2, to lead by 33-points, with Buddy Franklin kicking 2 of them to only need 1 more in the last quarter to achieve the milestone. That moment came on the 18th minute mark, as he took a mark inside 50, fans already started to climb over the fence in anticipation. He went back and slotted his 1000th AFL goal, as thousands of supporters ran onto the SCG and were not able to be contained as they flooded around him. It took over 20 minutes to restart the game, and supporters had to help carry him off the ground. It was scenes like we’ve hardly seen in our game.

Sydney cruised home in the end to a comfortable 5 goal win. There is new hope for them after being eliminated by 1-point in last years elimination final to the Giants. They will look to continue this form when they face the Western Bulldogs at Marvel Stadium on Thursday night. Geelong will look to rebound when they face a hot Collingwood at the MCG on Saturday night.

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Collingwood continued its wonderful new start under Craig McRae, downing Adelaide in am impressive display by 42-points.

They were out of the blocks early, setting up the win with a 5 goal to 1 opening quarter. Adelaide kicked the 1st 2 of the 2nd quarter, before the Pies responded with 2 of their own, to get out to a 29-point half time lead.

Collingwood owned the premiership quarter, pilling on 7 goals to 4, including a ripping GOTY from the boundary. As the Pies took a 43-point lead into the final change. Both sides only added 1 goal each in the final quarter, as Collingwood cruised to a 42-point victory.

They will be confident that 2022 will be a strong year for development and improvement. McRae is bringing great things to the club, great energy and a great game plan. The era has truley begun for the Pies. They will look to extend their unbeaten run to 3 games, when they host Geelong in a mouthwatering clash at the MCG on Saturday night.

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Brisbane survived an early Bomber scare to get over the line by 22-points on Saturday afternoon at Marvel.

Essendon stunned everyone, bursting out the blocks to kick 4 goals to 1 in the 1st quarter. As they took a 22-point quarter time lead. But the game got back on Brisbanes terms, as they kicked 6 goals to 1 in the 2nd quarter to get out to a 5-point half time lead.

Brisbane got the game on their terms in the premership quarter. After the sides went goal for goal and the lead changes went back and fourth to start the quarter, Brisbane went on to kick the next 4 out of 5 goals to set up a commanding 24-point 3 quarter time lead. After Tom Cutler finally got the 1st goal of the last quarter, 16 mins in to give Essendon some hope, Lachie Neale and Hugh McCluggage iced the game for Brisbane. Archie Perkins got his 3rd goal of the game as consolation. But it was the Lions to good in the end, running out 22-point winners.

Brisbane will look to make it a 3-0 start when they host North Melbourne on Saturday night. Essendon season could be in real jeopardy, they face premiers and undefeated Melbourne on Friday night.

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Hawthorn continued their magnificent start under Sam Mitchell, outclassing Port Adelaide completely by 64-points on Saturday night. The Hawks moving to 2-0.

Hawthorn were out of the blocks early, kicking the only 3 goals of the 1st quarter. After Jack Gunston kicked a ripping goal for Hawthorns 4th in a row, Port finally got their game going a little. Kicking 3 of the next 4 goals. But Hawthorn regained control, kicking the next 3, including a cleaver goal from Conor Nash and another ripper from the boundary from Gunston, as the Hawks took a 28-point half time lead.

It would be a totally dominated Hawk 2nd half, as they piled on 6 goals to 3 in the 3rd quarter, but Sam Powell-Pepper scored 3 of those goals for Port. As Hawthorn pulled out to a 36-point 3 quarter time lead. Hawthorn went on to dominate the final quarter, kicking the only 5 goals, to pull away to a whopping 64-point annihilation.

Hawthorn have started their season beautifully. Winning 2 impressive games. They have set up a massive clash with the upcoming Carlton on Sunday. With both teams undefeated, this could be the biggest match up of the year so far, 2 upcoming sides with a heap to prove. For now, the Hawks are on top of the ladder at the end of round 2.

Port are in dire trouble, the side who came in 2nd last year and got destroyed in the preliminary final are winless after 2 games. They face a huge showdown against the Crows on Friday night. If they can’t get the job done over Adelaide, it is clear that this season is reset mode time for the club. They currently sit last after 2 rounds.

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Melbourne faced a challenging contest against the Gold Coast Suns on Saturday night, but came away victorious by 13-points.

The Suns started brightly, kicking the opening 2 goals, before Melbourne got their game going, kicking the next 3. As Melbourne snatched the lead at quarter time from Luke Jacksons snap from the pocket. It was a high scoring 2nd quarter with Melbourne kicking 6 goals to 4, as they took a 14-point half time lead.

The Suns kicked the 2 of the 1st 3 in the 3rd quarter to really challenge again. Melbourne steadied with the next 2 goals, including a ripping goal from the picked from Kysaiah Pickett to take the Dees out to a 22-point 3 quarter time lead. The Suns got the only 2 goals of the last quarter, but the Demons were good enough to hold out by 13-points.

Melbourne good enough in the end, but far from their best it is fair to say. Bottom line is however, they are 2-0 to start their premiership defence and have a chance to really show what they are made of when they host the struggling Essendon on Friday night. Gold Coast face an interesting contest against the Greater Western Sydney Giants (GWS), at Giants on Saturday afternoon.

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North Melbourne got their 1st win of 2022, grinding out a 15-point victory over a covid depleted West Coast Eagles on Sunday.

After the Eagles got the opening goal, North pounced, kicking the next 3. Willie Rioli pulled 1 back, as North led by a goal at quarter time. North kept the games on their terms in the 2nd quarter, kicking 3 goals to 2. By half time, Nick Larkey had kick 4, as North took an 18-point half time lead.

The sides went goal for goal in the 3rd quarter, with Kayne Turner kicking Norths 2, and Rioli kicking the Eagles 2. By 3 quarter time Rioli had 4 goals, alas North led by 17 at the final change. Larkey got his 5th for the day to start the last quarter. Aaron Black kicked a ripper goal on debut to give West Coast some hope. Larkey took a strong mark and put the game to bed, with goal number 6. As North ran out winners by 15-points.

North face a tough challenge in the Brisbane Lions away on Saturday night. West Coast face a challenging Western Derby against Fremantle on Sunday evening.

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Richmond got their season back on track, following their impressive 36-point win over GWS at the MCG on Sunday afternoon. It was ultra impressive considereing they were missing Dustin Martin, Jack Riewoldt, and Kane Lambert- just to name a few.

After each side kicked a goal each in the 1st quarter, it was the Tigers who gained controll in the 2nd quarter, as they kicked 6 goals to 3. Taking a 20-point half time lead.

The premership quarter belonged to the Tigers as well, kicking 4 goals to 3 and opening up a 24-point 3 quarter time lead. Richmond cruised to victory in the last quarter, piling on 6 goals to 3 to get their 1st win of the year and some confidence back.  Richmond will look to build when they face St Kilda next Sunday afternoon. GWS face an interesting clash with Gold Coast on Saturday afternoon at home.

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St Kilda came away with a thrilling 10-point win over Fremantle in Perth on Sunday evening, getting their 2022 campaign up and running.

It was all the Dockers in 1st half. As Fremantle burst out the blocks, kicking the only 3 goals of the 1st quarter. St Kilda got the opening 2 goals of the 2nd quarter, before Fremantle regained ascendancy and kicked the next 3 goals to open up 19-point half time lead.

The 3rd quarter changed the complexity of the game completely. As St kilda piled on a whooping 6 goals to 1 in the 3rd quarter, Max King kicking 3 consecutively to grab the lead in St Kilda’s favour. Jack Higgins soccered a cleaver 1 off the ground, and nailed a set shot to give the Saints a 16-point 3 quarter time advantage. We would be goalless in the last quarter till 6 minutes to play, when Nathan O’Driscoll kicked a ripper goal from the pocket to give the Dockers life in his 1st game. It was left to King to take a strong mark and ice the game for St Kilda with his 4th. Travis Colyer pulled 1 back for the Dockers, but it would only be consilation as the Saints held out for a memorable, rare win in the west.

St Kilda’s season is back on track and they will face an interesting challenge in Richmond on Sunday afternoon. Fremantle have the opportunity to rebound from this defeat when they face West Coast in next Sunday’s Western Derby.

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