West Coast celebrated their 10-year premiership anniversary in grand style with a 78-point trouncing of Essendon in Thursday night’s AFL clash at Domain Stadium.
Essendon entered the match as a rank outsiders, but held a three-point lead at quarter-time, and trailed by just 19 points midway through the third term.
However, they couldn’t stop the Eagles onslaught from that point on, with the home side booting 13 of the last 15 goals of the match to cruise to the 20.10 (130) to 7.10 (52) win in front of 33,117 fans.
Recalled Eagles utility Patrick McGinnity finished with four goals, while Josh Kennedy and Mark Hutchings booted three each.
The result lifted West Coast to within a win of second spot, but their top-four credentials will be put to the test next week when they host North Melbourne.
Bombers duo David Zaharakis and Mark Jamar are facing suspensions following ill-disciplined incidents.
A frustrated Zaharakis punched Eagles tagger Jackson Nelson in the stomach during the second quarter.
The blow left Nelson winded on the ground for almost a minute, with the 20-year-old then vomiting as he left the field.
Nelson restricted Zaharakis to just seven disposals in the first half, and 15 possessions for the match.
Jamar was reported in the third quarter after catching Eagles defender Jeremy McGovern with a forearm to the face as the two players squared up to each other.
Jamar’s night was over a short time later when he injured his left hamstring.
West Coast’s 2006 premiership side walked a lap of honour before the game as part of the 10-year flag reunion.
Ben Cousins was a notable absentee after being taken to hospital earlier in the week following an incident on a Perth highway.
But Daniel Chick accepted the invite despite airing explosive claims last year alleging widespread use of cocaine, ecstasy and methamphetamine during his time at the Eagles.
Essendon coach John Worsfold arrived at his former stomping ground hoping to pull off a miraculous win against the club he captained and coached to three flags.
Worsfold’s tactics were spot on early as the Bombers clicked into gear with clean, attacking footy through the corridor.
The Bombers made the most of their early chances, and had 4.1 to their name by quarter time.
But they could only manage 1.8 over the next two quarters as West Coast took control of the match.
Bombers forward Joe Daniher produced some memorable moments – including a smart snap from the pocket in the second quarter.
But West Coast had far too much firepower at the other end, booting nine goals in the final quarter to blow out the final margin.