Crows just fall short in AFL

The Divinyls briefly provided Adelaide’s soundtrack as coach Don Pyke described the emotions of their AFL near-miss.

“As they say, there’s a fine line between pleasure and pain, isn’t there,” Pyke said, referring to the Australian 1980s rock classic.

Adelaide again showed their top-four potential in Friday night’s pulsating match.

They had their foot on Hawthorn’s throat a couple of times, but could not kill them off.

Eventually, the three-time defending premiers stormed home with three late goals to win by three points.

While disappointed not to score a massive win, Pyke said he was proud of his players.

“You lose by under a goal generally you’ve done a lot right, so for us it’s important that we reflect on what we did well tonight,” he said.

“But … we’ve got to improve in certain areas to be able to make sure that next time we get the right result.

“I learned that we’ve got the capacity to compete at the high end, which is pleasing against quality opposition.

“So hopefully that gives our players a belief in the way they play and what they may be capable of doing.”

Pyke said skill errors, rather than any structural flaws, cost the Crows when Hawthorn made their late charge.

Friday night was also the third time this season that the free-scoring Crows, who have a 3-2 record, have conceded more than 100 points.

“It’s not ideal and again it’s a work in progress for us,” Pyke said.

“We’ve identified the areas we want to keep getting better at and that one we’ll keep working away on.

“In fairness, we played quality opposition and they’re going to do that at times to us.

“We just have to make sure we play consistently for longer.”

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