Bulldogs hoping for AFL finals miracle

The Western Bulldogs are holding out hope for an AFL miracle after Saturday’s loss to Port Adelaide.

The reigning premiers were ninth going into the clash and the Power came from behind to score a hard-fought 17-point win in the first AFL game played in Ballarat for premiership points.

The 14.12 (96) to 11.13 (79) defeat in front of 10,087 fans at Mars Stadium left the Bulldogs needing other results to go their way to claim a finals berth.

“It’s in the lap of the gods … we need teams to lose to make it,” Beveridge said.

“We’ve still got another game and we’ll just have to see how other results fall.

“We’ll wait until the end of the weekend and we’ll either need to pick (the players) up if we’re still a sniff or we’ll reassess what our week looks like if we’re out of the finals hunt.”

The Bulldogs entered round 22 with the same number of wins as Melbourne and West Coast, who occupied seventh and eighth spots respectively.

The Dogs won last year’s grand final after finishing the home-and-away season in seventh spot, but they haven’t looked the same side for much of 2017.

“We’ve been inconsistent in our year; there’s been a lot going on but we haven’t been a formidable opponent,” the coach said.

“We haven’t quite been able to win against the opposition up the top of the ladder … that’s just where we’re at at the moment.

“We haven’t had continuity in personnel and availability, but they’ve fought on.”

The Bulldogs host Hawthorn at Etihad Stadium on Friday night, which could be a farewell game for retiring stars Bob Murphy and Matthew Boyd depending on results.

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